EDITORIAL COMMENT: Mandela's words are his lasting legacy
2:16pm Friday 6th December 2013 in News
"NO-ONE is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite."
There have been no shortage of tributes paid to Nelson Mandela, following the death of the former South African president on Thursday night.
There will be many more in the next few days before world leaders gather at his state funeral next Sunday.
Mr Mandela, jailed by South Africa's apartheid regime for 27 years, became a symbol of freedom and hope for millions of people across the world.
His detractors point to the period he led the ANC's armed struggle against apartheid prior to his imprisonment as evidence of Mr Mandela being a terrorist.
In doing so, they forget this was a man driven from non-violent protest to taking up arms because of an increasingly brutal regime that separated human beings from one another purely because of the colour of their skin.
And they forget that Mr Mandela left prison preaching peace and forgiveness, and how he displayed a lack of bitterness most would find beyond us.
We doubt there will ever be a more loved and respected international statesman.
His true legacy are the words he leaves behind him, none more influential than those with which preface this opinion piece.
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