…And justice for all

In today’s world of turmoil due to a deadly pandemic and an uncertain future, all that is left is the hope for justice

METALLICA released the album “…And Justice for All”, the heavy metal band’s fourth studio album, on Sept 7, 1988. The cover depicts Lady Justice bound in ropes.

The album, which incorporates dark themes like corruption, death, murder and censorship, sold eight million copies in the US.

Fans sing to the tunes, and musicians and wanna-be guitarists try to pluck to the song “One”, imagining that one day they will be on stage under the glaring eyes of tens of thousands of fans, mesmerising them with their fingers.

The album became a global hit, but the symbolism of a damaged Lady Justice, aka Doris, carries a deeper and darker meaning — injustice, inequality and unfairness.

In many courts in the US, Lady Justice is a holy symbol — a woman carrying a sword and a set of scales — representing all the virtues of the country’s legal system.

She represents fairness and equal administration of the law. More importantly, it resonates law, order and justice.

“She stands tall and strong for a fair and equal application of the law, virtue, integrity, impartiality, power and justice. Symbolism is a powerful form of communication; Lady Justice stands in courthouses to remind all those who pass through of the power of the law and justice,” according to World Atlas.

Administration of the “law without corruption, favour, greed or prejudice” has been the core of the judiciary system across the world. For the legal fraternity, these are their guides and the oath they sworn to protect.

For all of us, justice is the one and sole common denominator that makes us equal irrespective of race, religion, colour of our skin, creed and political beliefs.

It transcends beyond one’s richness, social stature, class and position.

Beyond just being the rules that guide us in all of our daily actions, justice equals the men and the women, the rich and the poor, the Mont Kiara residents and the rural kampung folks of Kuala Krai, CEOs and roadside petty traders, drivers of supercars and the owners of manual 660cc Perodua Kancils.

It protects every living soul, provides the shield against transgressions and makes all Malaysians that call this country “bumi bertuah” as equals.

For more than six decades, the country’s legal system has been the umbrella for the country’s 32.6 million citizens. It has helped the country flourish under the rule of law and a beacon of the weak.

In today’s world of turmoil where societies are scuppered by a deadly pandemic and an uncertain future, all that is left is the hope for justice. Justice and hope are all that we have.

Mohamad Azlan Jaafar is the group editor and MD of The Malaysian Reserve.