#r2bcheerful42 – Bantu Stephen Biko

Today is the memorial of Stephen Biko’s death in custody of the South African police, back in 1977. He was founder of the Black Consciousness Movement (BCM) and I first became aware of him though Ian’s reference in Reasons to be Cheerful (Part 3) in July 1979, ahead of Peter Gabriel’s iconic tribute to him in the song “Biko” the following year. Bizarrely, “Biko’s” was also the name of the burger bar at my Student Union in University in the UK in the 1980’s. It is odd how the SU chose to memorialize people, but hey, that was the 80’s for you.  I am sad to see that it is no longer the case.

Now, obviously I do not have any photographs of Steve Biko that I have taken myself and in some ways it’s odd to include him in a list as a “Reason to Be Cheerful.” I can only assume that Ian was eluding to the fact that heroes like Steve Biko are a real reason to be cheerful. For that reason it seems appropriate for me to not post a simple photo but rather his likeness in the style of the famous Obama “Hope” imagery.



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