ALAN Wilson's letter on Friday was an eloquent commentary on the problems we face and how we should be dealing with them ("Ensure we don't repeat mistakes"). Good logical first world advice.
Thandile Kona's In my View on the other hand clearly demonstrated the difficulties we face as he personifies the emotional struggle some people face between their childhood experiences and their educated adulthood ("Defuse anger with dialogue", October 25).
While first world countries are the best off in terms of lifestyles and material benefits, this is not because someone gave it to them. It took centuries of time, hard work, self discipline, individual accountability and mature thinking for their wealth to be achieved.
And yes, while not so noticeable, wealth disparity still exists as a natural result of differences in ability and effort applied by different people.
Although not generally as advanced, the more successful second world countries demonstrate similarities to the first world, but instead of demonising their conquerors they learnt from the colonial powers, and to this day in India, Pakistan and Hong Kong the past is acknowledged as a phase in history. While their own substantial achievements are gloriously celebrated, the colonial buildings and street names are left as part of their history and no resentment is evident.
They were taken to the water and they drank.
While much of the third world is still very short of the attributes required to achieve even second world status, there are many signs of advancement with all the stresses that immaturity brings. Power struggles, jealousy, deceit and resentment are all very evident among the peoples in the countries north of us, some of whom were never colonised and where many who were taken to the water chose not to drink.
Contrary to Kona's assertions, and without fanfare, the majority of white folk did and still do acknowledge the damage done by the previous dispensation, and have continued to work toward overcoming the damage done, by teaching and advancing deserving candidates throughout the corporate world and domestic service.
But South Africa's small first world population just cannot cope with the avalanche of third world people desperate for a better life and needs the support of mature guidance from within the third world, from those who were led to water and drank.
Government, on the other hand, has done its best to sabotage these efforts by opening the borders, paying children to have babies and destroying institutions of advancement by giving indifferent and greedy cadres positions way above their capabilities and who generally rob the public purse wherever possible.
The capacity for changing this lies with the third world voters and if they cannot see this, it must be expected that first world patience will evaporate.
No-one's interests are served by advancing the immature passions of resentment and jealousy, promoted as righting historical wrongs, as legitimate justification for savagery.
Valdy Jensen, Walmer, Port Elizabeth