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Recovering backpacker, Cornwallite at heart, political enthusiast, catalyst, writer, husband, father, community volunteer, unabashedly proud Canadian. Every hyperlink connects to something related directly or thematically to that which is highlighted.

Thursday 6 November 2014

The Death of the Just Society

Canada must be a Just Society.
  - Pierre Elliot Trudeau

Jian Ghomeshi has hired the best legal defense he can get. 
Marie Henein is worth every considerable penny she gets paid - she delivers wins for her clients.  She does this partly by eviscerating her clients' victims.  She plays mind-games, she knows what triggers to pull and what buttons to push to break or establish perspective frames in the minds of her audiences.  Truth, after all, is in the eye of the beholder.
She does this in good conscience, because hey, it's not personal - it's just business.  She's just making a living, right? 
The sort of "fairness" folk like Henein are able to deliver is inaccessible to most Canadians.  Our prisons are filled with people who've committed less heinous crimes than those Ghomeshi is accused of. There are plenty of people in the justice system for crimes the likes of which more than a couple politicians have committed in the public sphere and gotten away with.
Equally, there are plenty of victims out there who know that to seek justice is more likely to lead to revictimization than closure. 
Such is the pervasiveness of laissez-faire capitalism - justice is not a law of social gravity, it's a commodity to be bought and sold.  If you've got the coin for it, at least.
What we have taken to calling justice is, in truth, anything but.  Justice has become what we can get away with or what we can bully/con/charm/buy our way out of.
So much for the Just Society.
You can't have freedoms without responsibility - so what we need is a Responsible Society.  But such is not our culture at present. 
With the preponderance of free social engagement tools, however, there's a not-so-subtle shift happening - a social murmuration is starting to emerge.  Leaders with foresight are seeing where this shift leads and are, in fits and spurts, getting ahead of the curve.
You can't have responsibility without mindfulness, without knowing context both spatial and temporal.
Just something to be conscious of.

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