Everywhere I look there’s another article about the passing of Nelson Mandela. Most articles laud him, a few villify him. And any criticism of his legacy is being labeled racist.
The fact is that the legacy of Nelson Mandela —or, as he was affectionately known by his clan name “Madiba” or, intimately, by “Tata” (father), by his people who are streaming to his memorial to say goodbye, who are at once mourning his loss and celebrating his life — is a complex one.
Different qualities can coexist within one person, and depending on the arc of a person’s life — if it is positive, such a person can indeed be a hero, yet still be seen with his flaws.