Opinion and Entertainment Review (of sorts) by C J Oakes
Yet even then, our modern society generally fails to meet the most fundamental notion of justice, namely, that the punishment fit the crime.
For instance, what is the punishment for pedophiles? Years in prison and the opportunity to get out one day and repeat the crime (which, many do).
What is the punishment for murder? In some cases, killers get the death penalty, though ironically, in some locations the killer cuts a deal and escapes capital punishment while an accomplice that did not actually commit the crime is executed.
What is the punishment for theft in so-called civilized countries? Time served behind bars. The victims get nothing. In some cultures and in ancient times, the penalties are/were the victim must be paid back seven-fold and/or the guilty lost a hand.
Justice is a tricky proposition which is why Black Mirror: White Bear on Netflix is so refreshing.
I am going to try to avoid being a spoiler, though some may have already guessed that the story is one of justice, real justice.
White Bear is Episode 2 of Season 2 of Black Mirror. The series is odd, providing futuristic imaginations of what the world could be if technology is injected with steroids. Always strange, always creepy, the program reminds me of a fully modernized Twilight Zone, with each episode not only entertaining and odd, but conveying a very human lesson in the process.
The story White Bear opens with a woman who has amnesia. She awakens, groggy and confused into a world where villains roam and the population have become mere spectators. As she is chased by these villains, people just watch, seemingly oblivious to her plight. One woman who helps her explains that something got into the electronics and caused most people to become apathetic to the plight of others. Only one in ten were unaffected, with many of those becoming hunters of the others. Why? Because they can.
To avoid giving too much away, I must stop here. But this episode of Black Mirror had to find its way into my blog — it was just too powerful a concept of justice!
If you believe that justice is failing in the modern world, chin up. The future, at least from the perspective of the writers and producers of Black Mirror: White Bear are concerned, will set that right.
If you have Netflix and are signed in, go to Black Mirror: White Bear to watch the episode. If not, find someone who does or get Netflix yourself, if only for a month. It will be worth the ten bucks to watch this show.