High Court stormed/protested

Thumper 3 February 2009 11

Protesters stormed the High Court yesterday after it rejected a legal challenge against the Northern Territory intervention according to the Canberra Times.

About 50 protesters, indigenous and non-indigenous, charged through the front doors 15 minutes after the court handed down its decision. The crowd overwhelmed security guards, chanting ”Always was, always will be, Aboriginal land” and waving flags and banners.

Scuffles broke out between police and the protesters, and one man was arrested. The crowd dispersed after a half-hour stand-off with police.

The High Court rejected claims from the traditional owners of the Arnhem Land community of Maningrida that aspects of the intervention, including land acquisition, were unconstitutional.

Whatever you think of the decision (or the intervention for that matter), storming of our legal institutions simply because you don’t agree with the decision is reprehensible. If you think it’s wrong, appeal, don’t riot.

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11 Responses to High Court stormed/protested
caf caf 10:58 pm 03 Feb 09

It may be of interest to those wondering about appealing High Court decisions above to know that this particular decision actually overruled part of a previous High Court ruling (Teori Tau v The Commonwealth, where it was held that the land acquired under the Territories power did not have to be on just terms).

Sleaz274 Sleaz274 9:06 pm 03 Feb 09

Good on them maybe the High Court got a glimpse of the real world when the mighty doors of power were flung open. I agree with trevar.

Utah…hahhahahahahahaha and then when the very people who decided on the matter can decide if they were absolutely wrong hahahahahahahhaaha they’ll be stormed next.

utah utah 8:32 pm 03 Feb 09

trevar said :

Can a High Court decision always be appealed?

Yes. The Court passes judgement based on the laws written by Parliament, in this case the Constitution. If you don’t like the decision, lobby to have the law changed by Parliament.

Granny Granny 12:47 pm 03 Feb 09

It was certainly premature at the very least.

jakez jakez 12:44 pm 03 Feb 09

trevar said :

so why should we assume that judges are good at judging?

Judging by the way people carry on here over decisions of the ACT Magistrates and Supreme Courts, I’m not sure anyone is going to disagree.

jakez jakez 12:42 pm 03 Feb 09

As trevar said, you can’t appeal a High Court decision.

I’m just glad nobody was severely injured.

trevar trevar 12:37 pm 03 Feb 09

I know this is a little off topic, because I really just took issue with the idea that storming our legal institutions is immoral regardless of the circumstances; but it comes down to natural justice. If something’s really worth fighting for, lots and lots of people will protest, but if it’s only a little bit worth fighting for, only a few will, and the police can deal with that, as happened yesterday. No chaos. Just a set of circumstances in which the system of government was, for whatever reason, called into question. And perhaps their demonstration can prove just how close to the line the intervention treads, and how a judgement, which is neccessarily black-and-white, cannot deal with all the shades of grey in this case.

My main point is that it cannot be assumed that judges are good at judging things. They may well be, but it ain’t neccessarily so. We know that our legislators aren’t very good at legislating, and that police are only moderately good at policing, so why should we assume that judges are good at judging?

Perhaps I will accept prehensible, but no way is it reprehensible!

Granny Granny 10:59 am 03 Feb 09

Well, I’m in two minds.

Trevar has a point about some things being worth fighting for.

On the other hand, if we had a riot every time someone disagreed with a High Court decision the system would soon degenerate into chaos.

So on the whole, I’d have to go with prehensible I think.

Duke Duke 10:55 am 03 Feb 09

Unhappy about the government failing to help impoverished aboriginals? Protest!

Unhappy about the government attempting to help impoverished aboriginals? Protest!

trevar trevar 10:42 am 03 Feb 09

Can a High Court decision always be appealed?

There does come a point where violence is a better course of action. I don’t necessarily think we’re there on this issue, but I would never argue that any authority, whether its the Parliament, the High Court, the police, the military or even the head of state, is above suspicion of idiocy. I think history teaches us that the higher the authority, the more likely it is that the individual holding the office will become an idiot.

I don’t necessarily agree with the protesters, and I suspect that there is potential for appeal at the moment, but you can’t simply assume that a legal institution is just, so I completely disagree that this action is ‘reprehensible’. It might be silly and premature, but it’s not reprehensible.

It is entirely hensible…

Mr Evil Mr Evil 10:23 am 03 Feb 09

“Whatever you think of the decision (or the intervention for that matter), storming of our legal institutions simply because you don’t agree with the decision is reprehensible. If you think it’s wrong, appeal, don’t riot.”

Nah, that’s a much too sensible suggestion for these idiots to comprehend.

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