I do apologise for the title ass I really dislike utilising inappropriate language but the case of Ethan Couch has really pea’d me off! I am sure most of you are aware of the Texas teenager who in June of 2013 at the age of 16 stole beer from a store then casually went on a drinking joyride and ploughed the truck he was driving into four pedestrians killing them all and leaving his passenger paralysed and brain-dead. After the incident his blood alcohol level was assessed at approximately triple the legal limit for an adult.
He subsequently pleaded guilty to four counts of man-slaughter and given an unimaginable sentence of a mere 10 years PROBATION based on his status as a minor and the so-called “Affluenza” defence. This defence assumes the inability of one to understand the consequences of his or her actions because of financial privilege and environmental upbringing. In other words, someone that was raised wealthy and not instructed on the basics of social responsibility towards others in society is not accountable for their actions. Now the fact that he escaped justice with the pithy sentence he was given wasn’t the wake-up call he needed to make necessary changes in his life as he reportedly continued to drink even after rehab. If that wasn’t enough, he escaped his sentencing with his mother by fleeing to Mexico after a reported farewell celebration with friends. As most of you may be aware of by now, they were recently apprehended in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.
My personal rant with all of this is neither due to the fact that some ridiculous plea was used by the defence to get him out of serving a just sentence for his crime nor the fact that he idiotically attempted to escape the asinine sentence that he was gifted with. No, my fury lies with the judicial system that ignorantly allowed this miscarriage of justice in the first place. It should be absolutely clear to everyone by now that there are two systems of justice in the United States. One for the affluent, privileged, and ethnically acceptable citizenry and another for everyone else. In a country rooted in the light of justice and equity, we are clearly descending into chaos and darkness and rapidly taking the rest of the world along with us.
Acceptance of the Affluenza defence is inherently dangerous to our perception of equity and justice. If someone of wealth and influence can escape justice and not be held accountable for his/her actions simply based on being raised in a privileged environment, then why not accept a contrary defence for every poor, middleclass and underprivileged individual who has committed a similar crime as well? I mean if you were raised in poverty and educated by parents that did not or could not convey right from wrong to you, shouldn’t you also be allowed to be absolved of any criminal or negligible actions on your part and excused for any anti-social behaviour that you may exhibit? Isn’t that the true message of the Ethan Couch decision? Wouldn’t this reinforce the notion that responsibilities for one’s own actions with respect to constitutional law is mute especially under exceptional discerning circumstances of wealth, race or familiarity? Does this not negate both the spirit and letter of the law as outlined in the US constitution?
It is quite evident by now that the United States is a nation in decline and has been on life support now for some time. This can be contributed to inept leadership; enormous personal and national debt; massive government and social corruption; a blurred social consciousness; continued disparity between the classes; the declining education of the masses and deteriorating family social structure; as well as an apathetic population mired in arrogance. Does any of the aforementioned sound familiar? Well it should as several of these have been the precursor to the fall of the Roman Empire. The Ethan Couch case is just the latest in a series of judgments, policies and events to underscore America’s continued decline on the world’s stage.
With the dawning of a new year and no end in site to the internal and external challenges faced by the nation, a new dark age seems to be rapidly descending on the country as well as the world as a whole. The United States can no longer be considered a country of truth, justice, liberty, affluence and a balance of power but instead, a major contributor to the decline of western civilization as well as that of the rest of the world. Unless there is a rapid reversal of current trends, we are destined to continue to bankrupt our culture and subsequently relive one of the darkest periods in the history of humankind. It falls to those of good conscience and influence in the various aspects of our government and society to hold back the darkness and ensure that this nation maintains its place as a beacon of truth, justice, liberty and light for all and not for the privileged few.
Adiuva me verterem figuram mundi