Despite the controversy surrounding Malema's actions, Friedman, who heads the University of Johannesburg's Center for the Study of Democracy, says the idea Terreblanche's murder was caused by a racially charged song is a fallacy.
"I don't agree with the argument because it implies we had some sort of happy existence beforehand," he says. "I don't think anyone who understands South Africa could argue that race relations have been fine since 1994."
But he adds that tension doesn't necessarily have to translate into racial violence and rarely has. Critics of the ANC -led governments since the end of apartheid, point to the country's high crime rate as evidence of a new form of racial violence, citing the statistic that 3,000 white farmers have been murdered since 1994. But the statistics for black on black crime are much worse, with numbers ranging as high as 50 murders committed per day in black townships.
Sixteen years after the end of apartheid black and white South Africans may not like each other, but they are learning to co-exist uneasily. The reaction to the murder of one of the country's most controversial white supremacist leaders actually proves just how far South Africa has come, says Friedman.
"People are really polarized in racial camps, but it hasn't lead to violent acts," he says. "They tear each other's hair out with words, rather than fists, and they certainly don't use weapons to settle racial differences. I don't see that trend changing."