The Magistrate's Blog (2005-2012)

This blog has migrated to www.magistratesblog.blogspot.co.uk This blog is anonymous, and Bystander's views are his and his alone. Where his views differ from the letter of the law, he will enforce the letter of the law because that is what he has sworn to do. If you think that you can identify a particular case from one of the posts you are wrong. Enough facts are changed to preserve the truth of the tale but to disguise its exact source.

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Location: Near London, United Kingdom

The blog is written by a retired JP, with over 30 years' experience on the Bench.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Plus Ca Change - One Of A Series

I have just watched BBC4's broadcast of the Nureyev/Fonteyn Romeo and Juliet, to the stunning Prokofiev score.

Okay, it's set in Renaissance Italy, to a tale by an Elizabethan Englishman from what was to become the Black Country (well nearly, anyway) but what struck me in the quiet bits, when I was sent to put the kettle on, was how many of the human follies on display are to be seen in our courts four centuries later. Stupid, pointless blood feuds among young men, their testosterone overload overcoming any common sense they ever had. We worry about knife crime: this lot carried swords and daggers. Perverted ideas of family 'honour' have come back to haunt us in the 21st century.

Every mistake that a human being can make has already been made by someone else - yet we still have to find out the hard way for ourselves. Shakespeare could warn us about most of the pitfalls - if only we were not too proud to listen.