The justice system gone awry

The purpose of justice is to ensure fairness and sustenance of a competent civilization. Only in primitive cultures can one envisage a condition of survival of the fittest. A society that punishes the hard worker, but promoting the sluggards is susceptible to become extinct, within a short period. It is necessary to identify the symptoms, before attending to remedies.

The blame game is the biggest symptom of a nonperforming society. Ask any person who is starving. The answer is uniformly to blame somebody or something else. Covid-19 pandemic will probably stand out as the sweetest ever excuse for those taking comfort in blame. Drought is the commonest, in explaining the reasons for not having food.

Next in line, especially among the impoverished African countries, is the former colonialists. The former colonialists are considered evil when compared with the former colonized. However, when looking deeper into the reasons for colonization, one constantly notices the blame game syndrome, featuring dominantly. Except for skin-color, there is nothing different between whites and blacks.

Intellectual capabilities are not identified by skin-color. But we have to first find out causes leading to the classification of one race as dominating others. Everything revolves around the justice system. It is the justice system that addresses human problems, rather than racial conditions. To effectively unpack the advantages and disadvantages of justice, we have to first emphasize its necessity.

What is the purpose of justice? In the animal kingdom, there is no justice. In times of scarcity, a lion can feed on its own kind. Hyenas would wait for a cheetah to kill its prey, before exercising their dominance to take over what belongs to the cheetah. In the animal kingdom, most species have become extinct or are fast becoming extinct. However, using the power of the mind, humans can implement a justice system, to enhance their survival.

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Unlike the animal species, living at the mercy of the jungle life, without justice, human survival can be anchored on justice. In our current civilization, nations are sustained in their territorial independence, so that none is supposed to interfere in other’s respective territories. Sadly, we still have some countries still using the blame game, against other nations. But the blame game is non-survival, as uplifting the one blamed while diminishing the one who blames.

There is a law of cause and effect that, if taken advantage of, could change people’s lives for the better. That which one blames is cause over the one blaming it. If there is a boulder, blocking the way, one becomes the effect, where the boulder would be the cause. This is regardless of the fact that a boulder is inanimate.

Jesus told his disciples that if they had faith as little as a mustard seed they could move mountains. Jesus was emphasizing the point that humans were created to be the cause, over everything. The moment humans cease to be the cause, they become the effect. Instead of controlling things they are controlled by things. In times of slavery, slave masters were the cause, over slaves.

In other words, slaves did not have any rights. I laugh when most people try to coax anger, as to become so emotional about what happened during those slavery times. They start blaming the former slave-traders. But at that point, they fall into the trap of being the effect, rather than the cause. Blaming the former slave-traders makes them superior, while the one who blames them is weakened. Remember, what is blamed is senior to what blames.

Nevertheless, all humans were created to be the cause, rather than being the effect. One cannot blame anything without being the effect. The moment a person becomes effect, he is no longer able to cause anything. He sits in the comfort of blaming the boulder that blocks his way, as to be unable to move any further. He will, obviously, die eventually, without food, regardless of having a good reason for not moving any further.

He may acquire as many sympathizers as possible, helping him to continue blaming the boulder that blocks his way. But that does not change anything, as he remains to be the effect, which is non-survival. The cause and effect law insists that the two, run in opposite directions. You survive when you become the cause. But you die when you become the effect.

In this world, people are categorized according to classes. One class is said to be powerful and the other class is said to be weak, with the third being in between. However, all humans were created in God’s image, so that the class categorization is a fallacy. It serves to justify the blame game syndrome. The prime factor of failure lies in the inability to appreciate having been created in God’s image.

Regardless of where a person comes from, when discovering being God’s child, one becomes the cause, over his environment—like God. If created in God’s image one cannot be the effect. Imagine a country exercising independence in its territory. But electing a leader who turns around telling them the country cannot move any further because there is a boulder blocking the way.

The blaming of the boulder, blocking the way becomes a rallying point for the entire nation. As long as the subjects agree and sympathize with the leadership, the citizenry is towards its extinction. That which is blamed would have become the cause so that the entire nation becomes effect—at the mercy of the boulder that blocks the way. Being the effect is another way of succumbing to death.

Few people may start blaming the leader for the impasse. But such people would also be the effect, as long as blaming the leader of the same group. By blaming that leader, the person would have given him the unnecessary supremacy. Right there you have a sort of confusion in exchanging blame against one another. One is not the cause, when blaming the leader, or any other person, for that matter. Each person, having been created in God’s image, is the cause.

The fact that the leader would have failed, presents no excuse to blame him. This is where the justice system—if handled properly—comes in. The starting point is the agreement of how the group needs to be governed. No-one can have a right to impose his will upon others. That would be the opposite of freedom or independence. The group, therefore, starts with the document called Constitution. The judiciary serves to administer cases of injustice among the group members.

This brings us to an interesting current development in the MDC. Many people blame the Gokwe man, having brought confusion in the opposition party. But, with all fairness, that Gokwe man should be held with high esteem for exercising responsibility, expected of every party member in that group. The Gokwe man refused to be the effect.

There is a positive side that most people fail to appreciate, as far as the current confusion in MDC is concerned. Everyone ought to understand that confusion comes before order. Standing by what is right is what is important. Jesus, actually, brought confusion in Judaism. But, because He was right, what He taught still stands. They killed Him, but Christianity stands triumphantly. Eventually, everything will eventually fall in order, as initiated by Jesus.

It is the truth that prevails over everything. But the point is that it is unnecessary to blame the leader when things go wrong. Each person bears the responsibility on issues of justice, using the Constitution, as a guide. The courts adjudicate where disagreements exist. One school of thought is that the judiciary is captured by the state—thereby, buttressing the blame game.

Under normal conditions, the judiciary processes ought to bring reconciliation to the feuding parties, on matters of constitution. Bearing in mind that the constitution would be based on the contracted principle. The citizens’ room for appealing may end up with the constitutional court. But let us use the MDC fiasco, as a currently existing example. Others state the possibility of state capture. That may as well be true, but I beg to differ.

The processes were followed through to the Supreme Court. I suppose ZANU PF, though appearing as now taking advantage, had nothing to do with the outcome of that judgment. Madam Khuphe, having been accorded with leadership towards the congress, should have seized the opportunity to unite the two factions. Her press conference, after the outcome of the judgment, ought to have been reconciliatory, rather than divisive.

She would have called for a meeting with the 2014 executive committee members. This would have been for the purpose of drawing up the strategy for the extraordinary congress. Having been bestowed with leadership, she ought to have displayed her maturity. Her role would have been to unite the feuding groups, seeking to pave way for a united party.

Contrary to what most people think, the judgment was beneficial to both parties, but against ZANU PF. Unfortunately, that opportunity was messed up by the two gentlemen, Komichi and Mwonzora, from the MDCA—possibly, this is where ZANU PF’s interference may have come in? Rushing to the press conference, after the Supreme Court judgment, rubbishing their colleagues at MDCA without proper communication, could not have been normal.

This is like failing to take responsibility for the children born in an illegitimate marital union. What happens to the children of an illegitimate marriage? Unless, if the MDCA leader had publicly disagreed with the Supreme Court ruling, immediately after the judgment. But, even then, due processes ought to have been followed, if mindful of the constitutional provisions.

By acting unilaterally, the two gentlemen, actually, violated the principle of constitutionalism, though professing to be the advocates of constitutionalism. Their behavior served to, unnecessarily, buttress the rumor that they were Zanu pf pawns. What is important is appreciating that justice follows the principle of doing unto others what one wants to be done to him.

The properly administered justice could, actually, cause the offender to confess and apologize. Those in MDCA should only review the Story of David and Saul in the Bible. In addition, they should remember what finally happened in the story of Bishop Kunonga of the Anglican Church, now that Harvest House has been taken? There is no need to supplant stupidity for wisdom. The principle remains superior to everything physical.

The most damaging culture in our political landscape is the failure to distinguish between a democratically elected leader and a monarchy. A democratically elected leader does not own the country, as owned by the electorate. Some may blame the late former President for having advocated for a monarchial culture into a democracy.

Mugabe did so in agreement with the naïve populace. Even as he came up with the idea of crushing those opposing him in Matabeleland, his supporters were in approval. Mugabe’s opponents were treated as enemies. But how would his supporters feel, if similarly treated, themselves? Whatever one doesn’t like done to him, should be viewed as unjust. This is why justice has its roots from the Constitution of a country.

Each and every person would be expected to have had a say, in the promulgation of the Constitution. Failure to do so makes one an effect, rather than being the cause. Every person is entitled to decision-making and expected to independently examine the contents of the Constitution. Blaming the leader of a country when things go wrong, cannot be right. The person in power is not in that position by any other means but through the ballot paper.

Those in rural areas make it sound plausible that they have always been forced to vote against their own will. However, that happens to be another sign of irresponsibility. Remember, that which you fear, hate, or feel uncomfortable with, is superior to you. It is the cause over you and, therefore, you would be the effect of it—but headed towards demise.

The children of Israel feared a man called Goliath. They became the effect, where Goliath was the cause. I suppose as to show them the power of being the cause, God had to use young David, for the job, even without a superior weapon. To become cause does not mean having to dominate other people. This is just as the man who caused confusion in MDC could be viewed as a nonentity, yet having caused upheavals in that party. Each and every individual holds the power when appreciating being the cause.

The people of Zimbabwe lament over President Mnangagwa’s abuse of the military and police. They would be fully aware that abusing the army for his political support is unconstitutional. They sit in the comfort of blaming him, instead of using the constitution to handle what needs to be corrected. All of this cannot be easy, of course. Doing the right thing cannot be easy in this world, yet being what is necessary for survival.

When appreciating the responsibility of doing unto others as one would like them to do to him, one applies justice. Those working as lawyers and judges are people too. There is nothing peculiar with those people, just as there is nothing peculiar with those in other fields. Taking responsibility and ensuring an effective justice, means doing unto others what one would like them to do unto one.  Otherwise, there is no other justice in this world.

Andrew Masuku is the author of Dimensions of a New Civilization, laying down standards for uplifting Zimbabwe from the current state of economic depression into a model for other nations worldwide. A decaying tree provides an opportunity for a blossoming sprout. Written from a Christian perspective, the book is a product of inspiration, bringing relief to those having witnessed the strings of unworkable solutions––leading to the current economic and social decay. In a simple conversational tone, most Zimbabweans should find the book as a long-awaited providential oasis of hope.

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