Sunday, December 17, 2017

It's Machel's turn inthe 'Court of Equity'

UWI Professor of Education, Theodore Lewis ("Leniency for Machel" Express, December 13), gave us a lesson about an overlooked feature of our courts. His thought-provoking letter highlights an often overlooked aspect of Lady Justice's raison d'Ítre: to dispense mercy.

When Her Court of Equity takes the lead, it counters an unrelenting litigant who demands his pound of flesh even though more logical retribution is clearly possible and applicable.

Lewis's letter addresses the guilty verdict pronounced on our superstar, Machel Montano, and the impending sentencing.

As Lewis reminded us, the crux of the matter was a manly confrontation between two sets of protagonists which ought to have been resolved out of court.

Two names relevant to my mission are The Merchant and Sugar Aloes, each of whom escaped the full wrath of Lady Justice for offences light years more serious than what Machel Montano and Kernal Roberts did.

In each case, as far as I recall, non-custodial penalties were imposed by the courts after stirring pleas for leniency and other testimonials were considered.

When added to Mighty Sparrow's circumstances (which Lewis mentioned), the three precedents are powerful singly and jointly, to catalyse Lady Justice's reliance on Her Court of Equity for Machel's sentencing.

If the three precedents aren't sufficient to do the trick, then, in addition to all the pluses Lewis has identified, may I add this: no human has ever made it, or will ever make it through life without doing or saying something better left undone or unsaid.

It's the hallmark of humanity to possess and exercise free will, therefore to make judgement calls which may turn out to be the wrong ones, especially when the call is made when red flags are madly flapping.

So, over to you, Lady Justice. Please, let equity rule. Your decision is scheduled for the height of the Carnival season.

Don't let a pound of flesh drain the lifeblood of the Greatest Show on Earth, a billion-dollar money spinner which Machel rulz!

Ayodele Chieng

Petit Bourg