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No Justice, No Peace!

Written By : Allen Peterson
February 19, 2011
It is always interesting to contemplate phrases you hear on the street. The fact that daily we hear statements that make no sense seems to bypass most people. It seems as if the utterances that make the least amount of sense also seem to become the ones most used for our political slogans.

During most protests by the political Left, the slogan “No Justice, No Peace” gets used quite often. It’s a fine sounding slogan. It rolls off the tongue quite nicely. It makes a good chant (especially if your fist is in the air). It sounds logical, perhaps even poetic (in a simple sort of way).

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It’s a slogan I’ve heard many times over the years. It is a slogan mostly used to unite the political Left (with some exceptions). After typing the slogan into my computer search engine I found “No Justice, No Peace” used in various headlines from organizations like Socialist Alliance, Socialist Worker, many anti-Israeli pro-Palestinian sites.

It’s also a slogan that you hear quite frequently from Jesse Jackson, Cornel West and of course the always entertaining Al Sharpton.

I also found the slogan used in Pope John Paul’s world day of peace. However, the late Pope changed the statement to the much improved “No Peace without Justice. No Justice without Forgiveness“.

The only problem is, the statement makes no sense.

It is quite obvious that you can have peace without justice. Most of the world’s totalitarian regimes have enjoyed peace without justice. The idea is quite simple. You simply shoot or send to the gulag anybody who disturbs the “peace” and tranquility of the collectivist state. It was a technique that worked rather well for the Soviets as well as the Nazis (until the National Socialists went to war).

For the Soviets the aim was to get rid of the “enemies of the people.” This included the rich (unless they were in the communist party). The great British philosopher Bertrand Russell used to call for peace during the cold war by saying “Better Red than Dead.” Russell’s peace without justice viewpoint was answered by the great Russian anti-communist Alexander Solzhenitsyn when he replied “Better to be dead than a scoundrel.”

For the National Socialists the aim was to rid Germany (and later the world) of inferior races, thus bringing “peace” to the Fatherland. Like the communists the aim was the same; to create a perfect society by weeding out the undesirables.

If the Germans would have succeeded there would have been peace in the world. But it would have been a peace that ignored the humanity of countless millions. There is always peace in a graveyard.

It is also quite obvious that you can have justice without peace. World War II was anything but peaceful, but it was just. Try asking a veteran who ran up the beach at Normandy in the face of German machine gun fire. Did he feel peaceful on that fateful morning? Every war and revolution in history has been unpeaceful. There was very little peace during the Revolutionary War, Civil War, WW1, WW2, the Korean War or the Vietnam War.

In fact, when we try to determine which wars (if any) were just, we NEVER rely on the criterion of peace, because unjust wars can eventually end in peace as easily as just wars. The critical question (among many others) is whether the goal of the conflict is just.

If it is possible to have peace without justice and justice without peace, then what should we do with such a slogan? I say we should get rid of it. But instead of removing it and thus leave a hole that would be later filled with an equally absurd slogan, it would be wise to come up with one that really works.

My recommendation: No Truth, No Justice. Since it is impossible to have truth without justice, or justice without truth, the slogan would be internally consistant. And who knows, If we fight for truth and justice long enough we might find ourselves being given a very special gift…

Peace.

No Justice, No Peace

Written By : John Hawkins
August 21, 2006

Thank you very much to John Hawkins for inviting me to guest blog today. I hope John feels better soon and feels up to spreading the message of the right wing.

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Theodore Dalyrmple has a devastating article in the City Journal about the terrible criminal justice system in Britain and how the government is systematically failing in its prime responsibility – to protect its civilians.

For the last 40 years, government policy in Britain, de facto if not always de jure, has been to render the British population virtually defenseless against criminals and criminality. Almost alone of British government policies, this one has been supremely effective: no Briton nowadays goes many hours without wondering how to avoid being victimized by a criminal intent on theft, burglary, or violence.

An unholy alliance between politicians and bureaucrats who want to keep prison costs to a minimum, and liberal intellectuals who pretend to see in crime a natural and understandable response to social injustice, which it would be a further injustice to punish, has engendered a prolonged and so far unfinished experiment in leniency that has debased the quality of life of millions of people, especially the poor. Every day in our newspapers we read of the absurd and dangerous leniency of the criminal-justice system.

….Only five days later, the papers reported that 1,023 prisoners of foreign origin had been released from British prisons between 1999 and 2006 without having been deported. Among them were 5 killers, 7 kidnappers, 9 rapists and 39 other sex offenders, 4 arsonists, 41 burglars, 52 thieves, 93 robbers, and 204 drug offenders. Of the 1,023 prisoners, only 106 had since been traced. The Home Office, responsible for both prisons and immigration, still doesnt know how many of the killers, arsonists, rapists, and kidnappers are at large; but it admits that most of them will never be found, at least until they are caught after committing another offense. Although these revelations forced the Home Secretary to resign, in fact the foreign criminals had been treated only as British criminals are treated. At least we can truly say that we do not discriminate in our leniency.

Scandal has followed scandal. A short time later, we learned that prisoners had been absconding from one open prison, Leyhill, at a rate of two a week for three years323 in total since 1999, among them 22 murderers. This outrage came to light only when a senior policeman in the area of Leyhill told a member of Parliament that there had been a crime wave in the vicinity of the prison. The member of Parliament demanded the figures in the House of Commons; otherwise they would have remained secret.

They don’t investigate many crimes and then they don’t try to prosecute them because the paperwork is too heavy and the courts just let them out. Those who do go to prison serve short sentences that they can get reduced by half. Apparently, all the bureaucrats are conspiring to hide the truth in obfuscating and dishonest statistics.

When you couple these depressing facts, which Dalrymple has gotten from a new British book, A Land Fit for Criminals, together with what Melanie Philips has written in Londonistan, a truly frightening picture of crime in Britain emerges. It’s amazing that the Conservative Party isn’t making more of this issue since it must really strike home to everyone who has ever been a crime victim.

What is also clear is that Americans must be vigilant to stop any tendency in our cities to travel down this same path that Britain has traveled down. Britain has conducted the experiment. We can see the results. Let’s learn from their tragic mistakes.

Cross-posted at Betsy’s Page.

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