Mon | Feb 26, 2024

High-handed sentence for Isat Buchanan

Published:Friday | December 8, 2023 | 12:06 AM

THE EDITOR, Madam:

Those with power are expected to behave responsibly. While I agree that Isat Buchanan should be sanctioned, I am appalled at the abuse of power seen in the two years that he is barred from practising law. The Jamaican Bar Association (JAMBAR) has over-reacted.

Buchanan seems to suffer from the foot-in-mouth disease. However, the sanction he was given is not compatible with what he said about Director of Public Prosecutions Paula Llewellyn and Justice Minister Delroy Chuck. This is a young man with a history of a felony who has dusted off his shoes and rose to become a lawyer with great potential to be a master advocate.

Yes, he seems foul-mouthed at times but those who are educated in the law should guide him on expected behaviour, not destroy a promise. JAMBAR, and power that is, in fact, seem to be saying ‘we let you in, however, remember that you are a poor youth, so do not irritate us. That is so wrong. Many of those who decided his fate are older with children who are lawyers. There is something called Karma. By your action, you are saying to the inner-city youth ‘stay in your lane, you might get a lighter sentence if you scam or commit a robbery than if you are educated and dare say anything deemed offensive’. This is an unequal society and, if we continue this Israel/Palestine situation, we will forever have scamming, because the marginalised youth will say ‘whatever I do, I will never be treated fairly, thus it is easier to live in the outcast lanes’.

The marginalised youth will rationalise that they will take the chance among their ‘chapping’ peers. The master/slave mentality is alive and well in jurisprudence in Jamaica.

PROF RACHAEL IRVING

The University of the West

Indies, Mona