19th May, 2011.
When laws are accepted to work and yet morally they are not upright, then there is trouble. This means that with the laws there are victimization, there are immoralities of all kinds that must be connected in one way or the other with the law that will be in use and yet morally dead. Such laws are many and they exist in very many societies even to day. For the sake of this research, I will use the apartheid law in South Africa.
In the play Antgone, the law of the state is given priority than even human life. This is what we find in the law apartheid.
There are many laws that do revoke the morality nature of the human beings. Apartheid was an example. Apartheid was a system of rules that was applied in South Africa. It entailed rules and regulations that curtailed the freedom of the non whites whop were being ruled. Just like in the play Antigone, the rulers i.e. the government enforced and emphasized that the law would apply at all costs.
The system of rule took place between 1948 and 1994. The national party that ruled South Africa as from 1948 formalized the racial segregation into law. This included the laws like those that prohibited mixed marriages, sex between whites and the blacks, registration of populations with the races, laws that that grouped people, laws that suppressed communism among other laws that were under the umbrella of apartheid. (Davenport, 29)
In South Africa, the racial segregation was done at the highest point possible. People especially the blacks who were the natives of the land were deprived of their citizenship. They were forced to move and live in small governing groups called the Bantustans. Some of these groups later became independent states. In this law, black people were segregated in Medicare services, schools, public services that were provided to the blacks were of poor standard as compared to that of the whites. This is an immoral act considering that both the whites and the blacks are human beings and should be entitled to the same goods and rights. Just like in the play Antigone where those who were considered to be disobedient to the state were deprived of their citizenship, people in South Africa were deprived of their citizenship and forced to live lives that were not fulfilling. (Lodge, 32)
In the apartheid law, there was the rule there was an act of 1950 which classified people racially. It came with the issue of identity cards. This was mandatory of all people above the age eighteen. In the identity cards, the people’s races were clearly stated. It also came up with boards that determined the races of people whose races were not clear. The population registration act thus separated people. Human morals do not allow this. Once a person is born, people should not subject him or her to such segregation because they are all human beings.
There was also the grouping act that was formalized in the year 1950. Before this act, people used to live side by side and there were no much chaos. However, this law divided people into races. The blacks had their own areas of living, the Indians and the whites. There was total separation of people. This came with different implications on the people. The whites were left to the good places and very productive areas were reserved for them, this is an immoral act. Choosing what is good and discarding that of low quality to the rest. (Lodge, 23)
In South Africa, there was segregation in education. The education system that was designed for the blacks was majorly to prepare them to live not a better class than the laboring one. So they were provided with education to give those skills and discipline to be good servant to the ruling class. This went up to the university level where a separate university for the blacks was created I the year 1959. These universities were also to enroll the colored and the Indians but not the white.
The coming of apartheid in South Africa saw the creation of the department of the colored affairs. This was after the introduction of the separate voter representation which was done in the year 1951. It also saw the introduction of the parliamentary bill that allowed the parliament. Through this bill, the parliament was able to overrule the decision of the court. This thus could not see justice through. In the same year that judges were appointed in favor of the ruling party, an act was made that saw the increment of the number of the senate members. (Davenport, 66)
In summary, with this brutal treatment, the case in South Africa rose eyebrows in the international community. Apart from the internal uprisings in the country, many people were also concerned from outside. With the rising demand for independence, the blacks of South Africa were given support from different communities in Africa and the apartheid law was abolished in the year 1994. This saw the election of the first black president of South Africa, Nelson Mandela.
Davenport, T. R. Modern History of South Africa. London: MacMillan, 1977.
Lodge, T. South Africa since 1945. New York: Longman, 1983.