In Plain Humour

In Plain Humour

Following excerpts are from an Old English Saturday night Prime Time Comedy show:
You… can be a millionaire…and never pay taxes! You can be a millionaire… and never pay taxes?” First… get a million dollars. Now… you say, “Steve… what do I say to the tax man when he comes to my door and says, ‘You… have never paid taxes’?” Two simple words. Two simple words in the English language: “I forgot!” How, many times do we let ourselves get into terrible situations because we don’t say “I forget”?  Let’s say you’re on trial for armed robbery. You say to the judge, “I forgot armed robbery was illegal.” Let’s suppose he says back to you, “You have committed a foul crime.  You have stolen hundreds and thousands of dollars from people at random, and you say, ‘I forgot’?” Two simple words, “Excuse…..me…”
What a world for us to live!
A village guy climbed a Kitul Tree just to taste a little Kitul Toddy.  Of course on the sly. Unfortunately got caught to the owner of the tree. He asked why did you climb-up my tree. Guy answers – “just to see whether I can find a little grass for my cow.”
Owner retorted – where do you get grass on top of trees?
Guy very politely says, “My friend that is why I am coming empty handed” who can disbelieve this rustic lad?
A play where the script is being written!
A Minister serving in a cabinet of a government is asked by a judge at an inquiry
Did you go to occupy this luxury apartment with your family?
Answer –  the Hon Minister  “Yes your lordship”
Question – Do you know that this apartment was leased out by a person accused or alleged of a scam involving public money?
Answer – “No your lordship.”
Question  – Do you know Mr.  Minister how much is the lease rental for the apartment paid to the owner by who-ever?
Answer – “No your lordship”
Question – Do you know who arranged for your family to move into this apartment?
Answer – My family – Wife & daughters Your lordship
Question – Did you ask your family how much it costs?
Answer – No your lordship
Question – Did your family ever inform you that the lease rental is USD 10,000 per month?
Answer – No your lordship
Question – If you knew that this apartment was leased out by a person accused of a charge dealing with public money – would you have occupied this apartment?
Answer – No your lordship
Questions yet to be asked
Question –  Do you now know that the apartment was leased out to this questioned party?
Answer –  (may be)
Question – Now you know that you have done something which you should not have done as a Minister –
Answer –  I did not know then your lordship.  In my busy schedule I only slept there.
Question – But you know now that you have occupied a premises which you should not have occupied.
Answer –  Your lordship my head was burdened with the debt burden of the country at that time.
People –  Now that you know, you have done something which you should not have done why don’t you go home!
When we learnt civics in the elementary school we learned that “Ignorance of the law is not excuse”.  But those of us who did not pursue the studies up to the law degree are not aware whether “Ignorance of facts can excuse one from ethical obligations and public liability”.
We read, see and enjoy comedies, plays and writings on the subject. But a clear answer has to come by way of acceptable verdict.  Till then we continue to surf the domain in quest of a proper reply.
Ignorantia juris non excusat
“ignorance of law excuses no one”
“The rationale of the doctrine is that if ignorance were an excuse, a person charged with criminal offenses or a subject of a civil lawsuit would merely claim that one was unaware of the law in question to avoid liability, even if that person really does know what the law in question is. Thus, the law imputes knowledge of all laws to all persons within the jurisdiction no matter how transiently. Even though it would be impossible, even for someone with substantial legal training, to be aware of every law in operation in every aspect of a state’s activities, this is the price paid to ensure that willful blindness cannot become the basis of exculpation

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