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Question: What attribute does Lady Justice share with the Bengal Tiger?

Answer: Elusiveness

I’m sure I’m not the only human being in the entire world who believes that justice is in the same category as those mysterious, rarely-seen creatures, such as the aforementioned Bengal Tiger, whose natural hunting grounds are mainly in India and neighbouring Bangladesh for those that want to know. In fact, I get the impression that those who come from a privileged background have more chance of tasting the sweet fruits of justice than those who live at the lower ends of the social and economic ladder, which isn’t fair at all, simply because everyone – yes, everyone – should have opportunities to seek justice in life.

But some would argue that the world is the way it is and that there will never be a world where there will be TRUE equality for all. Well, I think such a pessimistic attitude certainly isn’t going to help get everybody a seat at the dinner table; and, yes, I do believe that there are enough seats at the dinner table (and also plenty of food to go around). I’m not one who’s inclined to believe that the world’s many, many bounties are here in the world just for some people to enjoy, and for others to just dream about enjoying. Yes, it won’t take a rocket science to figure out that I prefer egalitarianism over elitism any day. People can call me whatever they want – but I am who I am and I’m not going to apologise for my beliefs and principles, nor should anyone else who feels strongly about the world’s justice deficit problem.

We can all have lengthy debates and fiery discussions about the perceived causal factors that create and maintain such inequity all over the world, and I’m sure many of us have our own opinions on the matter. I don’t know about you but I believe that complex problems have complex roots. The world isn’t a black and white place – and don’t forget that.

We live in a highly technologically advanced world, yet so many human beings languish in areas of the world where there isn’t access to water that’s fit for human consumption and/or access to safe sanitation facilities. We live in a world that has plentiful supplies of food, yet hundreds of millions (billions?) of people are plagued by the starvation demon. We also live in a world that clearly has a disturbing level of apathy towards the suffering and plight of fellow human beings, especially from my generation (I’m in my early twenties). I interact with so many young people on a daily basis and I’m saddened to see that a lot of them are too wrapped up in their own lives, so much so that they’re unable (or unwilling?) to see what exists beyond the horizon. Sad, but true.

Injustice enrages me, just as it does to others around the world. And there are so many kinds of injustice, from having to pay additional fees because your bank intentionally deceived you to being falsely imprisoned while on holiday by criminal-minded, opportunistic police officers. I’m sure many of us have been struck by injustice on a number of occasions, including myself. Sometimes it’s been our own fault, and sometimes it was the fault of forces beyond our control.

I’m not a fantasist. I don’t believe that we will one day be fortunate enough to grace thee grasslands of a world that will resemble the numerous utopias that have been depicted in various Hollywood productions. The world will ALWAYS have cruel, greedy, stupid human beings who have a psychopathic tendency to inflict anxiety and misery onto their fellow human beings. Don’t ask me why. I just know that some people derive an enormous amount of personal pleasure from deliberately hurting others.

There are some instances when we, as individuals and as communities, can tackle injustice, and then there are other times when we can’t; when, sadly, we have to stand by and let human nature take its destructive, demeaning course. It’s accurate to say that cases of injustice occur all over the world and blight the lives of countless people, who just want to get on with their humble lives without harming anyone or anything. So this monster pretty much has its – very slimy – tentacles spread throughout much of the globe, unfortunately. Sometimes we have to eject ourselves out of our comfort zones to really “punch” some serious dents into the injustice cycle – and I’m not advocating any violence at all, so let’s get that clarified and out the way.

I’m sure some of us have become desensitised from all these years of watching all the carnage and chaos on our TV screens day after day. Some believe this is the brain’s way of coping with all the misery and heartache that it is exposed to. But we have to be extra careful that we don’t get trapped in a mentality that just accepts all the suffering and instability with a carefree attitude; with a mentality that makes us think that there’s nothing we can do to make a truly lasting difference in the world.

I suspect those who have been victims of the relentless inhumanity and barbarism of rancid, heartless people and forces will probably connect more with this Social Student entry of mine. I ask people to be hopeful, not unrealistic. And I ask people to do the right thing when they meet or see people who need assistance; people will, of course, have to figure out for themselves what the “right thing” is when the time is right. I hope I’m not asking for much.