Of taking offence to and much more…

So yesterday I was looking at the Times of Malta and I was – let’s say to put it mildly – surprised to read this article – which describes the acquittal of a man, who ran over someone (the fact that the latter is foreigner doesn’t really make a difference for the argument herewith) with his car because this person called him or made some sort of reference that the former was ‘gay’ – referring to homosexual tendencies. Now in this case, as the newspaper reports, the victim had allegedly made comments or gestures referring to the person’s sexual tendencies and that person got offended. Offended!!!!

Now at this point, let’s not talk into the merits of sexual tendencies and discourse in our local Maltese context. I really have a lot to say on the subject of the Maltese and the way they profess and live their “catholic faith”. That is something I will not argue in this blog post. However what literally made me gape like a fish, was that the “court considered he had been provoked, and that the perceived insult might not have been acceptable in a locality like Mellieha” (as cited in the Times of Malta).

And here I literally stop.

I find it not only totally incomprehensible but also, as a person, living in the Maltese community, unacceptable. It could very well be the court’s decision and I have to accept its finality however I do have a right to question what is happening around me.

So I candidly ask:

What, pray, is wrong with the community of Mellieha, that these people are allowed to attempt to harm another human being, on taking offence to a comment or gesture?

Are all the people of Mellieha of the same mentality (or rather culture [which I believe is given the wrong slant in the article] that if someone as much as mentions sexual tendencies, they freak out?

And what would happen if one resident of Mellieha took offence to another human being’s comments in another locality? Would the same law of leniency apply?

But then I also ask what makes the people of Mellieha so different?

You know, I do take offence to a number of comments myself. And this has nothing to do with sexual tendencies. I assume that like me, there are quite a number of people, who may take offence to, for example, a specific behavior. So, since to the best of my knowledge, I have been a model citizen so far, should I, the next time I take offence to someone’s behavior (because I feel he/she is trying to humiliate me) attempt to harm someone because I know that will get by, with a slap on the wrist? Or maybe not? Absolutely incomprehensible!

This summer there was another incident here in Malta, when a group of one of the best role models in society aggressively attacked an activist who was protesting against illegal camping on one of Malta’s public beaches. In that case, irrespective of the fact that in my opinion they gave a huge show of disrespect to Malta’s Court of Laws by their behavior and the way they were attired (or lack of), they got off with a €60 fine! In that case, there was photographic evidence but the court couldn’t proceed.

And yet again, we harp on the same subject. I understand that I really know very very little about the law, but I ask: is the law so complex that it fails to see something so, in my humble opinion, glaringly obvious? Why are we protecting those same people who love to show that they are bullies, simply to see the smirk on their faces as they say… See – as if anyone can stand in my way! … yes literally!

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