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Apartheid Was Based on Bad Theology

The system of apartheid in South Africa, a sophisticated but oppressive structure of racism that reigned for decades, was based in large part on theological doctrines that were formed at Stellenbosch University in the 1930s and 1940s. The Afrikaner nationalism and distorted Christian theology that came from Stellenbosch's Seminary fueled many Afrikaner's belief that they were God's chosen people. They saw themselves as biologically superior to other races. Therefore, they felt called to create a new segregated society that would allow them to civilize other people while not tainting themselves with the "darkness and barbarism" of those inferior groups.

These doctrines gave the white South Africans religious justification for horrific crimes against their countrymen and women. More than 3.5 million black, Indian, and biracial people were removed from their homes in what was one of the largest mass removals in modern history. Nonwhite political representation was obliterated. Black South Africans were denied citizenship and relegated to the slums called "bantustans." The government segregated education, medical care, beaches, and other public services, providing black, Indian, and other "colored" people with significantly inferior services. The result was a segregated society where people were dehumanized based on beliefs that were supported by bad theology.

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