National 'Braai' Day: A sponsored day of forgetting?

Last week, columnist and author T.O Molefewrote an opinion piece forNews 24, about Heritage Day, but also about how, in his view, the informal commercialisation of this day is really a “white supremacist-capitalist-patriarchy's day of sponsored forgetting.”

We’re talking about the informal renaming of Heritage Day to National Braai Day. A day which has become synonymous with Jan Braai.

Molefe says, ever since Jan Braai came up with the plan to braai on this day, every year since, without fail, South Africans on radio and TV talk shows, social media, in newspaper columns and, yes, even around braais have remained divided about what this day is supposed to be about.

So what are we supposed to do on Heritage Day, if not braai?

To discuss, we invited Molefe to join us on the line.

Jan, acting in obliviousness to the day's origins, rapped on the doors of supermarket chains, abattoirs and breweries, and convinced them to join his campaign to turn Heritage Day into National Braai Day. Of course sensing the opportunity to use a national day to spur consumerism and their own profitability, like they do on Christmas, Valentine's Day and Easter, these corporations said yes, and dedicated resources to the cause.

T.O. Molefe
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