Defend Truth

22 Questions with Sukasha Singh

Sukasha Singh is the production editor of DM168 and an accomplished journalist. Enjoy her 22 Questions below:

Sukasha byline

Sukasha Singh

DM168 Production Editor

Old-fashioned manners. In Joburg’s northern suburbs, civility is as commonplace as honest politicians, so I stick out for sticking to my old-school ways.

At one point in time I seemed to have a handle on things and would meditate or do yoga for 30 minutes before starting the day, but I haven’t done that in a while. Nowadays I usually wake up at whatever unGodly hour my dog decides she wants to go out.

I’ve been lucky to have traveled a bit in my career, so I don’t have any travel itches that need to be scratched. If anything, I’d like to explore South Africa more and maybe South America. The only rule I have about international travel these days is that I won’t support repressive regimes with questionable human rights records, and this makes my travel list significantly shorter.

I re-read a story on the Guardian website about how Finland is starting the fight against fake news by educating children in primary school to be critical thinkers. In 2014, Finland was targeted by Russia with a fake news campaign and the government realised that people needed to be educated on how to identify misinformation. An excerpt from the story: “He wants his pupils to ask questions such as: who produced this information, and why? Where was it published? What does it really say? Who is it aimed at? What is it based on? Is there evidence for it, or is this just someone’s opinion? Is it verifiable elsewhere?”

Small talk. I just don’t know how to talk to people about meaningless nonsense.

How Did I Get Blackjacks On My Unmentionables?
(Why you probably shouldn’t have mimosas after tennis at 6am and other so-called life lessons)

Onitsuka Tigers. I have the fashion sense of a 10-year-old tomboy, so I used to collect Tigers and had 11 pairs at one point. I’ve given most of them away now.

Not a fictional character, but an author I grew up reading and always enjoyed – Douglas Adams. His hilariously absurdist way of looking at life would come in handy when it looks like the world is coming to an end every other week.

Buying a house with my sister in Joburg’s northern suburbs.

Rupert Murdoch. He owns Fox News and hundreds of newspapers around the world that publish right-wing propaganda, climate change lies and anti-feminist vitriol. (He’s so toxic that even his kids won’t work with him.) I would try to undo some of the catastrophic damage he’s done over the years.

Brie Larson. Other than being an accomplished actor, she is known to champion diversity and even asked that media corps try to send women and people of colour to Captain Marvel press junkets (because there are normally only white men at these junkets). Obviously this made right-wing twerps very angry and despite them unleashing armies of misogynist trolls to cancel her on social media and to give the movie low ratings, Captain Marvel went on to make a billion bucks.

Alt J, Ravi Shankar, Gang of Instrumentals and a few NPR podcasts.

I’ve always wanted to live either on the beach or on a farm with wide open spaces – still working on this.

It’s a toss-up between Jennifer Saunders, Tina Fey and my mother who sends me (a journalist) WhatsApps that say “Don’t forget to be peasfull today”.

Mark Zuckerberg. I’m curious as to how he would defend the weapon of mass destruction he created when he’s not allowed to lie and he doesn’t have carefully prepared PR notes in front of him. Would be interesting to watch him squirm as evidence is presented on how Facebook has decimated independent journalism, fostered the growth of misinformation that has led to violent hate crimes all over the world and has allowed dictators to manipulate elections.

I don’t have much existential fear, but I am arachnophobic.

Something that entailed a lot of playtime with my hound. Also something that involved humanitarian activities that focused on educating and uplifting rural communities. I’m painfully aware that the life I live in my middle-class bubble is far removed from the lives of millions of women and children in South Africa who don’t enjoy the freedoms I do.

Any of the mad men who are currently ruining the world with their right-wing, conservative, nationalistic BS: Vladimir Putin, Julius Malema, Jacob Zuma, Donald Trump, Xi Jinping, Boris Johnson … this list could go on for days.

What’s your secret for being optimistic in dark times?