The Last Straw

May 17, 2011

The French radio has gone into meltdown after yesterday’s court appearance by Dominique Strauss-Kahn.

And I have to admit I have joined the shocked commentators who looked in total horror at the humiliation, seemingly consciously inflicted, on this prisoner. While the French have focused on the handcuffs, I wondered if there are no water and facecloths in US prisons. Though it is not easy to inflict self harm with a safety razor, I am being kind in thinking that it was for Monsieur Strauss-Kahn’s self preservation that he was not allowed to shave.

But the absence of a tie was the last straw.

If the State of New York had any sense it would have judged the situation better. It might have thought about the effects that this horror show might have on tourism. I can now quite happily live with the possibility of never setting eyes on the Art Deco architectural jewels in New York and being able to, in real time, think about the ambiguous nature of the Statue of Liberty.

I would be terrified to visit such a very unthinking place.

In France one was considered guilty until proven innocent during much of my life.

But appearing in a dishevelled mess before a judge would be considered a marked sign of disrespect to all concerned.

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