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The cost of innocence – part 2

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Tue, Sept 18, 2012

“Innocence does not find near so much protection as guilt” – Francois de La Rochefoucauld

Editor: The act of unjustly accusing an innocent person of wrong-doing has been around since the days of old. To date, there are many instances where individuals untruthfully conjure stories to prove themselves innocent, when all evidence verifies that they are profoundly guilty. On the other hand, the wrongly accused must bear the blame and punishment for actions which they have not committed. Likewise, in attempting to foster an honest and pious lifestyle, some are ridiculed by those in opposition to their demeanour.{{more}} These represent the perfect examples of when the innocent must pay for the guilty.

In one’s lifetime, there would have been an instance when he did something wrong and if he did not own up, serious repercussions would have resulted. Consequently, to rid himself of the penalty, he placed the blame on someone or something, spoke dishonestly, or if brave enough, owned up to his wrong on the grounds of being self-conscious or by force. In the event that another person was held responsible for the actions of his guilty friend, he would have been placed in the uncomfortable position of trying to defend himself ineffectively, unless the situation proved him innocent.

Childish offences purport quite minor consequences, but as one grows older he would realise that since age comes with responsibility, then obviously his actions determine whether he would be rewarded or castigated. Therefore, why is it that as one matures he seeks to act contrary to the expectations of a law-abiding citizen? Subsequently, when placed in the spotlight of his transgression he unashamedly mutters a preposterous story, claiming his innocence. Albeit, his story does not win over the hearts of the more experienced, but once he has ‘connections’ and his case is liable to an untruthful remix, he is well on his way to walking scot-free. As irrational as it sounds, this actually takes place on a daily basis by those considered as exemplary figures.

In the same way the one that you admired, was always reliable or constantly by your side turned out to be the one that brought you disappointment. However, because of someone who may have known them, their actions go unnoticed and they may continue with the same unacceptable behaviour. How did that make you feel? Their presence brought about an ever-present weight on your heart that made you think twice about having him or her in your life. Likewise, what if that special someone was innocent and was accused of some illegal activity, yet no-one believed him? He would face persecution at the hands of the law with no one to defend his plea.

Furthermore, take a look at the unfortunate souls who must bear the burden of unethical judgement of foul play, as well as those who choose to pursue the right path, even if it involves ignoring the herd majority. Their lives, filled with sorrow, pain and retribution are the emblems of the disintegration of a moral and cooperative nation. Notwithstanding this, there exist those who foster a close relationship with God to bring them out of such situations and believe that one day justice will be served.

It goes to show that such situations can also cause the destruction of an innocent soul, if it involves saving the one at fault from chastisement. Let us then try to uphold standards worthy of praise and not unfair judgement and that those in authority can bring light to these issues and ensure that justice be delivered in all fairness.

Elizabeth Bullock

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