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Nelson Mandela

Essay by   •  January 4, 2012  •  Essay  •  1,220 Words (5 Pages)  •  1,899 Views

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Nelson Rolihlaha Mandela is a cultural icon because he will be remembered for centuries for liberating South Africa from the inhumanities of apartheid using nonviolence as a strategy and his compassion for all people as demonstrated in his commitment to fight against AIDS. His impact on the social and political world will be known throughout history as he united the races to form the first democratic society in South Africa. His compassion and generosity is evident in the time he has spent spreading awareness of the tragedy of the AIDS crisis in South Africa. He is one of a few people who have been able to change a society's way of life so dramatically.

Nelson Mandela could have had an easy life as one of his countries first black lawyers but instead he sacrificed everything to fight against the injustice of the apartheid. He believed that everyone should have the same rights and not be treated inhumanly because if their race. Because of this, he was charged with treason and attempting to over through his government (N is Nelson 1). During his twenty-seven years in prison he was known the most famous prisoner in the world (A Monument 1). It was his time in prison that he got the ability to think ahead of everyone else. He had future generations in mind and thought in terms of decades not days or weeks. His determination and belief in a free and democratic society where everyone lives in peace, with equal opportunities is what made him able to change his culture. He became the nation's first president elected by the entire population (A Monument to Mandela 3). Another quality of Nelson Mandela is how his compassion stands out beyond measure as exemplified by his tireless work in raising AIDS awareness.

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Compassion is one of the first things that come to mind when thinking of Nelson Mandela. He is the driving force behind a world effort to fight the AIDS pandemic in Africa. It is demonstrated his 46664 AIDS campaign, named after his prison number (Kasonde 2). He looks at AIDS as a human rights issue, not just a disease (Kasonde 2). How many other political leaders are thought of for their compassion? He looks at compassion as a necessity in governing a society and something a democracy must have to ensure equality. Despite all of his good works, he is not without criticism.

Not everyone agrees with Nelson Mandela's outspoken beliefs. After he attacked the United States for its human rights

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