DISGRACE: Beyond the Cynic's View of Declining Justice in South Africa

2015-08-25 06:33

My friend, the Cynic, has some interesting perspectives on the South African justice system. Some of his more colourful thoughts are best not expressed verbatim here, especially to those who are feint hearted about profanity. Anyway, here is a revised, more palatable version of some of his banter from a recent conversation:

Lady Justice is blind to the plight of the victims, their close family and friends... and the crimes of the rich, famous and powerful.

Respecting the law really amounts to you respecting the rights of the rich, famous and powerful to do as they ducking please.

The purpose of the law is to provide a labyrinthine ritual to explain why the rich, famous or powerful are innocent, and a short and brutish pathway for incarcerating the anti-establishment and the poor.

The role of the courts is to transform criminal acts like murder into Latin speech acts. The incantations of this dead language and the illusion of its magic like quality are for unthinking fools who enjoy convoluted and ethereal exercises in rhetoric. In plain words the incantations always mean just this: “Innocent, because you have proven that you are rich, famous or powerful.”

Dumb journalists are the ones that are enamoured by Latin legalese that pop up in court proceedings. Instead of piercing through the bullshit and exposing the truth, they swim in it, feeling all self-important that they have learnt a new word or two, singing “read, read, how clever we are.....” and reporting second hand rubbish. They hardly remember the victim and what is at stake.

Revenge and the Law: The unthinking masses unquestioningly believe what they have been told time and time again by those in power. “Now, now, little children, our great father, the invisible, benevolent, omnipotent, angry God in the sky does not approve of revenge. Great Mr Invisible man would like us, his dumb children, to forgive the criminal, and take care of this little bitty baby by rehabilitating him. Oh, don’t pity the victim. The victim is in that heavenly place among the cushy clouds, playing a serene tune on the golden harp, all sucking day long.”

If you want the unthinking masses to believe you are innocent, simply play the blame game. Blame the devil, a tokoloshe, a phantom intruder, apartheid, the building contractor.... any dumb idea will do.

Tip #1: How a ‘reasonable man’ should check for a suspected intruder in the middle of the night. Remember, it is inappropriate to nudge your girl to wake up and ensure her safety first.

Need to find a way around the law. No fixer required. Just make sure the police arrive there first to examine the crime scene.

Coming soon. Schuster’s new movie blockbuster sequels: Dom Cop, Dommer Cop II, Dommer and Dommer Cop III....

A Simple Equation for Building a Civilized Nation: Conviction = 99% Punishment + 1% Rehabilitation.

The pomp and ceremony of a heartfelt prayer with the Bible as a prop acted out each day before your trial proceeds is an effective way to swing a dumb judge’s and the unthinking masses perception to your favour. Just add some family and friends for an extra dose of sincerity.

Rather cry a few tears in court today and feign remorse than spend years in jail in a great pool of regret.

FACT: The more attractive have a greater chance of convincing the court that they are innocent, even when they are clearly guilty. And there is nothing like a clean cut, conservative black suit with a tie to exude attractiveness, innocence and feign intelligence. Compliance professionals such as salesmen, pastors and politicians have long understood this.

The more devious of the two competing lawyers has lesser moral qualms appealing to the god complex of the judge. They shamelessly outdo their opponent in uttering those sacred words ‘my lady’ or ‘my lord’ over and over and ...over again. It is called praying, I mean, playing to the altar.

On the science of judgements: Ever wonder how these geniuses of justice get through the avalanche of evidence, precedence and nonsense? They simply ignore reason and common sense and count which of the two opposing lawyers uttered the greater number of ‘my lady’ or ‘my lord’ praises from the court transcripts. This is a fool-proof method of arriving at the truth and constructing a fair ruling.

On the science of judgements (cont’d), kissing up to an authority figure is another favourite fool-proof method. It goes something like this: Yes, Honourable Mr President, Sir.

Why are prison sentences so low? Judges cannot count in double digits.

Prison sentences and the Magic Number 10: 10 months or more for brandishing a firearm; 10 years or more for manslaughter; 100 years or more for murder (and special treatment offered by the 28s).

6 months for stealing a little something to eat; 10 months for killing?

We need a law that allows the citizen to sue stupid judges.

Progressive and world renowned correctional services experts from South Africa have made an amazing finding. Their revolutionary studies have shown that if you are rich, famous or powerful, a short holiday course in anger management is adequate rehabilitation for murder.

New anger management therapy: Learn how to repress your anger until you qualify for parole.

Correctional services are offering a gym contract that guarantees you a six pack. What are you waiting for? Go kill someone. And order one of their short jail time packages NOW! Don’t forget to inform your friends. Fully equipped to meet your personal needs. Ts&Cs: Offer only applies to the rich, famous and powerful.

The privileged understand that PAROLE is just another term for LUXURY GETAWAY.

PAROLE: An idiot’s solution to the overcrowded prison problem. A genius’s solution. Put corruption to work. Fill up those empty World Cup Stadiums and empty out those ageing ammunition from the Arms Deal.

REHABILITATION: How dumb conservatives and lofty liberals play dice with the lives of law abiding citizens.

Apt Metaphor for the Public Prosecutor: A Toothless Pussycat

If legal loopholes miraculously fail you, all is not in vain, loyal supporters can call slimy Dr Death for a personalised, customised get out of jail pass.. and live a long, heavenly life. All donations to be made in full in advance.

I am reminded of when I was young and thinking about a career. I thought how noble it would be to serve the public and become a lawyer or a police officer... My old man advised me to set my mind on an honest job or he would wallop me. I now understand why.

Laws are there to prevent the righteous man from taking the law into his own hands and beating the crap out of the criminals.

To conclude, my wise and bitter friend The Cynic ended by saying this about justice in South Africa:

How do I know that the law in this country is just a fiction? Our charming and unscrupulous President has done no wrong.

--------

But is this only half the story? Do we still have the potential to rise from the prevailing corruption, disorder, cynicism and increasing bitterness?

There are indeed many weak, wicked and stupid people involved in the justice system.

But what a shame it is that the many people there who once had the conviction, courage and intelligence to resolve many of these problems, appear to have given up hope.

What a shame it is that these rational men and women are not joining forces to provide justice to the justice system.

And how utterly shameful it is that we citizens are willing to submit ourselves to and tolerate such rot.

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