Who this land belong to?

24 Nov

I learned that South Africa has a declaration:

We, the people of South Africa, declare for all our country and the world to know:

That South Africa belongs to all who live in it, black and white, and that no government can justly claim authority unless it is based on the will of the people…”

My teacher then analysed it and said that the statement of ‘all who live in it own a piece of South Africa’ is not logical because some people especially the white are actually uninvited guests that came 300 years ago.

I wonder if that is really true, that as long as the ancestors did not set foot in a place early enough, then we the decendants will always be guests.

I am an Indonesian-born Chinese. My grandparents came from China and with them, they brought the custom and the sense of ‘we are Chinese’. I can understand why they thought so, afterall they are really Chinese who lived in China. My parents, under my grandparents’ influence, are still very Chinese. So the teaching go down to the next generation, my generation. But I wonder how chinese I am. I have never set foot there, I can’t barely speak the language, and the Chinese way that my grandparents impart to me is old-fashion one. The Chinese Taoism and Confusian teaching which widely practiced in Indonesia don’t really exist in China. If I go to China, I am labelled as overseas Chinese and treated as visitors – paying premium prices for everything. Yet in Indonesia I am labelled a ‘Cina’ which literally means chinese.

Even in UK, supposingly civilized and advance, many are saying ‘imigrants, imigrant, imigrant’ with dislike. But if you think about it, only the first generation are imigrants by freewill. Their next generation are just there by fate; they are just born there by parents who chose to leave home. They don’t choose to be imigrant, to be the guest.

If Howard is right, where do people like me belong to?

I traveled places in search for my treasure, just to find out that it has been there at the place I left behind.


2 Responses to “Who this land belong to?”

  1. Yu November 25, 2006 at 4:37 am #

    Although you can not choose where you born, but you are definitely not the guest there, because you are one of the young people who are able to change the country. I am not a native in my city where I`ve been living for 17 years, and I find it hard to claim my identification sometime, but I also have a strong feeling that it makes me different from others, which I assume is good.
    btw, I lost my sleep, at the morning of four o`clock!!!!

  2. Will November 26, 2006 at 9:59 pm #

    Where do I belong?

    I asked this question myself so many times.
    I have been born and bred in Italy. I am a native Italian speaker, yet I don’t feel Italian at all. I just don’t fit.

    At the same time, am I Irish? I have been to Ireland, but just as a tourist. Have I got anything to share with the Irish?

    Where’s the place I call home?

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