Sunday, 31 May 2015
The Other Side of The Story... There is Indeed Always One
Just a few weeks ago, an Ethiopian solider in Israel was involved in an altercation with a police officer. The officer struck the soldier and the entire episode was recorded on video. There's no sound, and nobody really knows what's being said. From our point of view, it is clear that the police officer certainly struck the soldier.
People strike each other every day. Sometimes people do it when they shouldn't, but at other times, they do when it needs to be done. Clearly, one cannot condemn a man defending himself from another and punching him or doing anything necessary to save his life (if need be.) Yet, if a man simply strikes others when he feels like it, he will certainly be in violation of basic societal rules - let alone the abundant transgressions from a Torah point of view.
But what if we see a man striking another and we do not actually know if he did so rightfully or not? How are we to judge and what makes us consider the striker in the wrong without adequate proof? Shortly after this episode took place, the soldier received an apology from the prime minister of Israel. Everyone saw that video and it seemed quite welcome. The media did a terrific job of sharing good values by not judging another for any one particular reason (like the colour of his skin.) It gave the world some reassurance that we are doing things right and we must know the right thing to do...
Are we ready to hear the other side of the story - and could it be valid (or have we perhaps already made up our minds?) Yes, there's no sound, so nobody can tell what's being said. Nobody seems to see the before scene of this either, having no real knowledge why the officer has appeared on the scene and what he might actually have being saying.
But perhaps we have all already made our decision. The public media has already shown who was in the right. We all saw the punches being thrown. But do we know what was actually going on at the scene?
It's something to think about in our daily interaction with others too - especially when we see things from afar - knowing nothing about what has brought the situation to be as it is - and what may have made the other do as they did.
It's a hard lesson and probably takes a life time of work before we can really think straight.
You be the judge. What really did transpire - however? Please - no negative comments about either side. If you have something positive to say, please feel free to share your comments. This post is in no way meant to take sides. It is meant to highlight how we are quick to make judgments, when quite often - there is another side to consider.
Watch the video below. Then read the news article - yes, the other side of the story: Cop at center of racial row: I'd like to tell Netanyahu what really happened