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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Dear folks,

I am new member of this forum, but I am reading this for the last week.

I have received an invitation from the company that I work to a new position in Sandton region, and I am reading very much about it, mainly about safety issues. As I can see, safety is really a problem in SA, but it is not so different from where I live today, Rio de Janeiro.

In Brazil, the diversity of skin colors is the rule, and it is very difficult to identify a Brazilian, or its social class, just looking for this color. You can see a white and tall woman, with beautiful blue eyes, who is very poor and lives in a "favela", as you can see a short and black guy, who lives in a luxury apartment just in front of the best Rio's beaches.

You can also see indian-like, asian-like, arabian-like, and all other kind of nationalities in the faces of our people. It is very common for us, and no one cares about it. We are a mixed people.

But in SA, I know the past of racial hate between black and white people, and that is very easy to recognize each one, because that is no much mixing.

That is my main concern: I am brown haired and with tanned skin, but with straight hair. Some people use to ask me if I have Indian or Arabian parents or grandparents, because of it. But my wife is very white, with thin straight hair, and can easily be confound with an american, for example.

Could it cause some problem for us in Johannesburg? Could people be "offended" because of a mid-black-mid-white guy who is married to a white woman?

Sorry if it is a fool doubt, but it would be very good to know your opinion about it.

Tks & Rgds,
Davi
 

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Hi -

Hot topic :). My answer is an opinion because like anywhere in the world you will get some variation.

I believe that the vast majority of people in South Africa (especially in urban areas) are very open minded to other cultures and races. Having said that - there are fringe elements of people who feel that the new equality is a bad thing. These are 'typically' in more rural farming type communities though.

I think the 'mixed' half black, half white thing you mention is not nearly as much of an issue as you think. We have our very own officially recognised race called 'coloureds'. This group of people are long ago descendants of when the first white and black people reproduced together in the country hundreds of years ago. Again, not everyone is completely open minded but you would hardly be an exception. There are also a lot of Indians in South Africa, both those that have been there for many generations are are not 'indian' by place of birth anymore, but very much in descent.

Mixed race marriages are by no means taboo anymore. It's far from common but you shouldn't expect to get stared at.

Here comes a potentially controversial statement - apologies in advance to anyone I offend. As I said - this is just my opinion. You may find that professionally you are at an advantage by not being white. South Africa has an affirmative action policy to ensure that people of 'previously disadvantaged' races have better opportunities for jobs and/or promotion. This is especially true at government or public sector level but also in large companies. In particular government contracts tend to go only to companies who are affirmative action compliant or who use companies who are compliant, and so on. I'm not going to pass judgement here on whether this is good or bad for the country - it can't be a bad thing for you though! :)

South Africa has a history and it's trying very hard to make up for it with very strong human right laws. I doubt you would run into any problems because of you race especially in the area you are looking at.

Best of luck
H


Dear folks,

I am new member of this forum, but I am reading this for the last week.

I have received an invitation from the company that I work to a new position in Sandton region, and I am reading very much about it, mainly about safety issues. As I can see, safety is really a problem in SA, but it is not so different from where I live today, Rio de Janeiro.

In Brazil, the diversity of skin colors is the rule, and it is very difficult to identify a Brazilian, or its social class, just looking for this color. You can see a white and tall woman, with beautiful blue eyes, who is very poor and lives in a "favela", as you can see a short and black guy, who lives in a luxury apartment just in front of the best Rio's beaches.

You can also see indian-like, asian-like, arabian-like, and all other kind of nationalities in the faces of our people. It is very common for us, and no one cares about it. We are a mixed people.

But in SA, I know the past of racial hate between black and white people, and that is very easy to recognize each one, because that is no much mixing.

That is my main concern: I am brown haired and with tanned skin, but with straight hair. Some people use to ask me if I have Indian or Arabian parents or grandparents, because of it. But my wife is very white, with thin straight hair, and can easily be confound with an american, for example.

Could it cause some problem for us in Johannesburg? Could people be "offended" because of a mid-black-mid-white guy who is married to a white woman?

Sorry if it is a fool doubt, but it would be very good to know your opinion about it.

Tks & Rgds,
Davi
 

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Dear folks,

I am new member of this forum, but I am reading this for the last week.

I have received an invitation from the company that I work to a new position in Sandton region, and I am reading very much about it, mainly about safety issues. As I can see, safety is really a problem in SA, but it is not so different from where I live today, Rio de Janeiro.

In Brazil, the diversity of skin colors is the rule, and it is very difficult to identify a Brazilian, or its social class, just looking for this color. You can see a white and tall woman, with beautiful blue eyes, who is very poor and lives in a "favela", as you can see a short and black guy, who lives in a luxury apartment just in front of the best Rio's beaches.

You can also see indian-like, asian-like, arabian-like, and all other kind of nationalities in the faces of our people. It is very common for us, and no one cares about it. We are a mixed people.

But in SA, I know the past of racial hate between black and white people, and that is very easy to recognize each one, because that is no much mixing.

That is my main concern: I am brown haired and with tanned skin, but with straight hair. Some people use to ask me if I have Indian or Arabian parents or grandparents, because of it. But my wife is very white, with thin straight hair, and can easily be confound with an american, for example.

Could it cause some problem for us in Johannesburg? Could people be "offended" because of a mid-black-mid-white guy who is married to a white woman?

Sorry if it is a fool doubt, but it would be very good to know your opinion about it.

Tks & Rgds,
Davi
No issue at all, there are so many coloured people around, you gonna feel at home :)

Cheers
A
 

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But in SA, I know the past of racial hate between black and white people, and that is very easy to recognize each one, because that is no much mixing.

That is my main concern: I am brown haired and with tanned skin, but with straight hair. Some people use to ask me if I have Indian or Arabian parents or grandparents, because of it. But my wife is very white, with thin straight hair, and can easily be confound with an american, for example.

Could it cause some problem for us in Johannesburg? Could people be "offended" because of a mid-black-mid-white guy who is married to a white woman?

Sorry if it is a fool doubt, but it would be very good to know your opinion about it.

Tks & Rgds,
Davi
Davi, this particular situation is a LOT more relaxed than it was during Apartheid. You will fit in just fine, no problem, especially as you are familiar with dangerous security issues and.... you have a job offer! Unemployment is one of SA's largest burdens. Colour is no longer the major focus as it used to be.
 

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Dear folks,

I am new member of this forum, but I am reading this for the last week.

I have received an invitation from the company that I work to a new position in Sandton region, and I am reading very much about it, mainly about safety issues. As I can see, safety is really a problem in SA, but it is not so different from where I live today, Rio de Janeiro.

In Brazil, the diversity of skin colors is the rule, and it is very difficult to identify a Brazilian, or its social class, just looking for this color. You can see a white and tall woman, with beautiful blue eyes, who is very poor and lives in a "favela", as you can see a short and black guy, who lives in a luxury apartment just in front of the best Rio's beaches.

You can also see indian-like, asian-like, arabian-like, and all other kind of nationalities in the faces of our people. It is very common for us, and no one cares about it. We are a mixed people.

But in SA, I know the past of racial hate between black and white people, and that is very easy to recognize each one, because that is no much mixing.

That is my main concern: I am brown haired and with tanned skin, but with straight hair. Some people use to ask me if I have Indian or Arabian parents or grandparents, because of it. But my wife is very white, with thin straight hair, and can easily be confound with an american, for example.

Could it cause some problem for us in Johannesburg? Could people be "offended" because of a mid-black-mid-white guy who is married to a white woman?

Sorry if it is a fool doubt, but it would be very good to know your opinion about it.

Tks & Rgds,
Davi
That will be NO problem. Relaz about it.

Good luck
 

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Davi,

I'm glad you received intelligent answers to your question. I was considering a move to SA myself and wondered the same things. although I did post some questions here in the past and mostly they too were answered. I am an African-American, retired, so these things are important to me.

I've visited Brazil and the impression I got was that things aren't as hunky-dory as you might say. Also there are some Brasilian forums and there are always long protracted arguments about racism, or the lack of racism, in Brasil. No one seems to agree, and from what I observed in Rio ("my next trip will be more extensive) is that the Blacks are generally on the lower end of the socio-economic ladder while the whites (?) are on the upper end. But, everyone seems to get along, and with my dark complexion I was often mistaken for Brasilian, and even had some aggravation from the beach police because of it. But oh well, I still love Brazil for I felt right at home.
 

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Look, racism is everywhere even in Brazil, it just depends who and what you call racism. No one is going to bother you in South Africa because of your fair skin wife, or your dark features. Many people black and white will adore your wife and will try to take her away fom you, even for ust a moment to dance. There is a lot of cheap labor in South Africa so you will probably have a black cook, family driver or security guard. Being black mysef I think this is a good thing, because these people would be unemployed if it wr not for expats. But watch them, they too love pretty women from Brazil.
A fe people might call you "colored" a classification that should die as it was reserved for mixed people, who would be grouped with indians and asians or any other person who was not quite black and not quite white - but those days are gonenow, however there are many people who lived in the old system still alive, then there are circles of hatred and superiority complexes still intact-- but these are all over the world.
As far as crime is concernd, most of th tough crime is committed by blacks, but don't be suprised if a few white guys try to "take you for a sucker too" that is crime happens and it usually does not discriminate by color, just by locale -so be careful where you go. Just like in Brazil.
You will invariably be more attracted to cultural social lives in the former Portugeese territory circles, of people from Angola and Mozambique, but that is only becaus these guys (and girls) have a better taste for good wine than the rest of us.
South Africa is a beautiful country, the economy is deteriorating not becau black took over the government, but because for the first time the weath is being shared among millions instead of a few hundred, it will take time to Adjust - But south Africa is the hope of all of Sub Sahara Africa, not for economical reasons only, but for racial harmony through out Africa and eventually the world. People like you show the world what a beautiful place it can be. All the fear about problems kids of mixed marriages will face is a creation of racist societies. People are people, and South Africa is learning that, however it is not alone on that score.
So yes, there will be times when you will see or hear something that is offensive that you might only hear or see in the United States, and not in Brazil, but whatever you see or hear - the good thing is, it is no longer legal. If you settle in South Africa, when your kids grow up they will see less and less racism, and their kids may never see any, as they will all just be South Africans, an important state of the African Union, where only people from the United States will need visas to go to! How things change!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Dear jvwh3b,

Talking about Brazil, you are right that here we have racism too, but your conclusions are not fully right. Let me explain it to you:

You are right that the major part of the poor people are black in Brazil. This is mainly because that in Brazil, as USA or England, we had slavery of african people for a long time. The slavery in Brazil was abolished in 1888, but the consequences were felt for decades, and in many ways, it is still felt.

Also, we still have small communities in Brazil that are mainly white skinned, europeans' descedants, and that are still very racist. But from far this is not the main prejudice that we have here, much because, as I told below, we are a very mixed people, and is really difficult to know today who is completely black, or who is completely white.

The main type of prejudice we have here is the social one. Be called "poor", in Brazil, is many times a type of swearing. And the kind of aggravation you felt at the beach, white, black, yellow or brown people from poor communities feel every day. You are right that black people are the main presence in these communities, but it is much more a reflex of our (bad) history, than from some current racism.

So, in a strange opposite way, believe me: the aggravation was much more because you were probably confounded with a poor guy (once it is more difficult to see a rich black guy here), than because your complexion. If the policemen were sure, from the beginning, that you were rich, you would certainly not be bothered - even being black.

Probably the biggest problem we have here, even bigger than the violence, is exactly the social differences. Living less than a mile from each other, you can see people living in complete poverty, and other driving their ferraris.

Brazil is a country of many constrasts, and many of them are not good ones. Here, you can find the best and worst of what the capitalism brings to the societies.

Rgds,
Davi



Davi,

I'm glad you received intelligent answers to your question. I was considering a move to SA myself and wondered the same things. although I did post some questions here in the past and mostly they too were answered. I am an African-American, retired, so these things are important to me.

I've visited Brazil and the impression I got was that things aren't as hunky-dory as you might say. Also there are some Brasilian forums and there are always long protracted arguments about racism, or the lack of racism, in Brasil. No one seems to agree, and from what I observed in Rio ("my next trip will be more extensive) is that the Blacks are generally on the lower end of the socio-economic ladder while the whites (?) are on the upper end. But, everyone seems to get along, and with my dark complexion I was often mistaken for Brasilian, and even had some aggravation from the beach police because of it. But oh well, I still love Brazil for I felt right at home.
 
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