The Power of a Human

Hans Gedda / Sygma / Corbis

Nelson Mandela spent 27 years in prison on trumped-up charges. After his release in 1990 he continued on his tireless task against Apartheid and helped create a multi-national democracy in South Africa. He was elected president in 1994.

I have read a number of interviews with Mr. Mandela but there is one that stands out in my mind. Unfortunately I didn’t save it and looking through thousands of search results has proved daunting. Oddly enough it wasn’t the interview content that impressed me so much. It was the interviewer’s description of the situation. Mr. Mandela was president and there was nothing but chaos swirling around outside. Violence, unspeakable acts being carried out by humans; a grim atmosphere. Mr. Mandela was observed in the midst of all this data being reported by his advisors who were swarming about. He calmly left what seemed like pure mayhem and entered a small room where the interview was to take place. According the the reporter, Mr. Mandela seemed to throw a switch in his mind, completely shutting out everything he had just been thinking of and provided complete focus to the interview. Amazing.

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