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July 05, 2020

If no one has respect for law

Every human being is born free and equal and no one has authority over others, according to Jean-Jacques Rousseau. Being born free and equal, men alienate their natural liberty to society only for their own advantage, hoping that society will in return provide them with what they need and will protect them by law. On the other hand, they should abide by the laws of the society, which are the only conditions of civil association. When a society fails to do so, men regain their natural liberty for their survival, breaching the laws of the society.
Recently, about 300 unidentified men armed with swords rampaged through a squatter in Hlinethaya Township in the former capital Yangon, injuring some of its residents and damaging a number of their shelters that could hardly be termed as any forms of human dwellings by any standards. The purpose of the attack was to regain the land by getting rid of the alleged squatters from the land said to be owned by a company. This undesirable rampage continued without any intervention for some time, forcing the residents to defend themselves by wielding whatever weapons they could lay their hands on. Later, the company that claims to own the land said it had to hire those men with swords as it was impossible to solve the problem at the court of law. It can be said that all of them have regained their natural liberty, which means just survival or preservation for oneself.
The society has still failed to provide the residents what they basically need as human beings and as a result, they settled on the vacant land plot said to be owned by the company. In Myanmar, it is also not clear whether those who are said to own land have also acquired it in accordance with the law. Therefore, the government and the Hluttaw have had to set up commissions to tackle land disputes across the country in accordance with the law and to provide land or low-rent apartments to the landless.
Everyone needs to respect laws that bind them together as a society or a country. If no one has respect for the law and regains their natural liberty, the ties that bind them together as a society will collapse.


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