During our stay in Pretoria, we were also able to go to one of the most famous landmarks in South Africa - The Voortrekker Monument. It sits atop a hill and the entire city of Pretoria is visible from the top of this building. It was incredible.

For those of you too lazy to click on the wiki link, this monument was built to honor the Voortrekkers (also referred to as the Boers or Voors), the Dutch settlers who had colonized large parts of the Western Cape. This colonization wasn't pretty - they slaughtered and enslaved the native Zulus and Ndebele. They were able to win the wars because of their advanced weaponry and thus they took the land.

Let's think about this. This monument commemorates a group who slaughtered the original Pretorians. Even the name Pretoria comes from Andries Pretorius - the leader of the Voertrekkers. Why would any Black South African want to go there? They don't. We learned that only White South Africans ever go to the Voertrekker monument (besides tourists, obviously). So why is it still up? White South Africans are a minority compared to the Blacks. Should such an insulting monument even be up?

But let's not get ahead of ourselves - the Boers weren't necessarily evil. They didn't want to be in Pretoria; they were being forced out of the Eastern Cape by the British and were trying to survive. This monument doesn't symbolize their brutality; it celebrates their innovation and ability to survive. But is it possible to ignore one while embellishing the other? I personally don't think it's possible to turn a blind eye to such savagery. But it's a matter of opinion.

Check out my pics here:

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