“I want to become a drug dealer when I grow up”

What would you like to become when you grow up? A question we all heard when growing up – a question which expressed the ambition and expectations children once aspired towards. Doctors, lawyers and teachers were once some of the answers…. Sadly that is not what I heard yesterday. Several teenagers no more than 15 years old boldly expressed their desires to become drug dealers.

I was taken aback before enquiring why, and their response was, “it’s the money!”. We are living in a society which prizes money above the sanity of life. Who can we blame? The government, their parents or maybe their teachers? How far have we come away from the compass of morality? How far have we wandered outside of Eden that our kids can’t see true role-models anymore… How sad!

ABOUT REIGER PARK

Reiger Park is a coloured township situated in Boksburg in the Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality, Gauteng, South Africa. It was established as Stirtonville after the Second World War when people influxed from rural areas seeking work on the gold mines. In 1963, due to the apartheid government’s policy of separate development, the black people were moved to Vosloorus, the Indians to Actonville and the coloured people were left to stay in Stirtonville, then renamed to Reiger Park.

The locals have given their own unofficial names to the different areas of Reiger Park, for example Jerusalem (due to the many churches in that area), Excuse Me (due to the houses so close together that when you sneeze, your neighbour says bless you) and Popcorn (a new area developed in the 1990s with the houses popping up so fast that they were likened to popcorn). In 1997, the Popcorn area experienced violent rent boycotts; in 2008, it was one of the sites of violence during the anti-immigrant riots, beating and burning émigrés on streets described as “war zones”.