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January 25, 2022



Radim Kupec on the death of Romani man in Žatec: The essence of equality is justice

23.10.2016 15:30
Radim Kupec
Radim Kupec

With respect to the events of Tuesday, when a young Romani man, Miroslav Demeter, died, many articles have already written and many questions asked that have not yet found their answers. Here I will try not to repeat what has been said by the others who have not been afraid to openly write their opinions about this issue. 

Most of that thinking has concerned itself with the circumstances of this death, or the reasons that it happened, and various reactions to it can be seen. For example, a very dear personal friend of mine whom I have known for years is refusing to accept an award I nominated him for, and which he fully deserves, just because he is disgruntled by this situation and by the approach being taken toward it by those representing the state and the system. 

Tomáš Ščuka's opinion piece has correctly described the situation and I fully subscribe to it. His article sufficiently describes the causes of the omnipresent antigypsyism in society. 

All of these articles and commentaries have a common denominator:  Regret over a young life cut short before its time, disgruntlement over the lack of information available, fear, and naturally a feeling that justice has somehow been degraded in this case. Another common factor that is obvious when we look at the contributions published on this issue to date is that nobody from the "majority" society, from the so-called "other", "better" part of society, has spoken up about it yet.


These words of Cicero were what first occurred to me, and they baldly reveal the problem:  Are we able, as the majority, to defend the idea that justice is the same for all? I think we are not able to defend it, to say nothing of equality. 

Each Romani person reading this probably knows what I mean by that. As a society, we are very well able to judge others without admitting the existence of diversity, and without tolerance. 

I personally, together with my organization PřesHranice z.s. ("CrossBorder"), which focuses on human rights protection, among other things, call for a serious investigation into these events and for anybody who has erred or not proceeded in accordance with the law and regulations to be beld accountable. If we find any kind of discrepancies, if we hold any suspicions, if we find any ambiguities, we will draw attention to them. 

In accordance with the legal regulations of the Czech Republic, we will take all the steps necessary to clarify this case, including the eventual prosecution of persons suspected of committing any crimes, and the awarding of compensation to the family who have remained without their breadwinner and father. With respect for the bereaved, with respect for justice and the law, and with respect for human beings...

Radim Kupec, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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