I made a post on Facebook that said,
"IF you really care about the indigenous tribes, stop pushing Common Law! Planet Earth is only free when we are ALL free." -- CindyKay
I received several messages afterward asking for an explanation. So here it is: (I wrote this in a hurry, so please forgive any typos.)
The problems with Common Law courts are numerous. I list just a few briefly here:
- Laws are made by judges in courts, not by the people or according to the culture of those involved.
- Judges decide on the case by considering it in light of earlier cases, or precedent. This gives judges tremendous power.
- Lower courts follow the decisions of higher courts (hierarchical). This gives "higher court" judges even more power.
- Adversarial system of trial is utilized: two opposing parties present their case before a judge and/or jury.
- A jury of people who may or may not be familiar with the moral or cultural practices of those involved hear the facts of the case.
Each of these points is fraught with numerous problems but as you can see, Common Law removes power from the masses. So what about the saying, "Do no harm, cause no loss, impede no freedoms?" Isn't that a cool saying? Well, it's a nice mantra -- but it loses its shine in the light of a system where the powerful few decided for the many what defines harm, loss, and freedom. Read more about the history of Common Law here: Common Law and Civil Law Traditions.
The following is a July 10, 2012 statement made by Michael Anderson, Coordinator of the Aboriginal Sovereignty Movement of Australia, regarding a group of attorneys who are attempting to get the Aboriginal people to sign over power of attorney to them. (One of these attorneys is a knight of the British Commonwealth named Sir John Walsh of Brannagh, a Sacha Stone legal advisor.):
"[We] are attempting to unite our people...without any directions, influence or control in our affairs by the invader states. We must take responsibility and ownership of our affairs by establishing local, regional and national governance. Furthermore, we must establish our own International profile as a united national government asserting our independent sovereign identity." Full article here: "Undermining sovereignty unity to get at colonial compensation treasure?"
We have been controlled through our misunderstanding of justice and law ever since the fist known writing-down of law in the 1700s BCE in Babylonia (Hummurabi). So what is the solution?
See also Aboriginal Practice Points.
The point is, in order for the world to be free, EVERYONE must be free; not just those whose practices and traditions allow for judges to make social policy. Those who prefer Common Law may utilize Common Law or create a suitable transitional version of it. And the rest of us may develop communities that share similar values and organize our social structure and order around those. The possibilities are endless.
Here are a few quotes offered as food for thought:
"Signs and symbols control the world, not phrases and laws." Confucius (551-479 BC)