Back in Leeds, I believed if you did not want to be a Doctor it meant one thing. You suffered woeful parental neglect. ‘Jews are either doctors or tailors.’My Leeds-born Mum carried the scars from Praszka.Her family had fled. Those who did not were dead. ‘When they come do not shilly – shally packing—run. You can start again.’ Levi, her dad was a tailor.My mother’s three boys would upgrade their permanent incipient refugee status. Lesser alternatives were dentistry and the legal professions. In fulfilment of my ordained task, I found myself in Aberdeen. There I did as my mum ‘s family history demanded.I became a Jewish doctor who is afraid of blood—a psychiatrist. I also dabbled in my dad’s family heritage. The Benjamins, the Burs and the Shinwells were political activists. If there was a union, they were agitating activists. If there were not, they would start one.The ‘New Left’ resonated with my genome. I joined them. We believed in the Brotherhood of Man, Power For the People. We fought against those who did not honour and respect everyone as equals.Our dogma, our belief and aims were simple. We supported the crushed individual. We were all born to be free and equals. We breathed civil-rights. We chanted freedom and equality for all.We were a full blown, self-acknowledged political movement. The movement, even then, detested Zion. I left in disgust.
I came to Israel because of Dayan. He won the six-day war. I stayed because of someone else.Menachem Begin was the re-incarnation of my Polish Zeideh. Begin thoughts, beliefs and passions were part of me.Dada was alive and well. He bombed the Iraqi reactor with one bomb. When the Holocaust came, the Gentiles did nothing to save us. Begin, the new old Jew did. The running was over.Begin told us, ‘there are Judges in Jerusalem.’ We knew we were to respect the law. Begin did.
I ran Oranit; I had decisions to make. I would ask my legal advisor. I asked one question only. The question was, ‘would I go to prison if I by- pass red tape.Later I ran another settlement. There I met a religious Jew. I asked him why Aharon’s sons died a horrible death.Moses faithful helper received punishment after we received the Ten Commandments. The reason was they drew fire onto themselves. They believed they were a rule unto themselves. They paid dearly.I withdrew from public life; I returned to psychiatry. But I remembered Aharon.
Something strange happened. Gradually things changed; the changes were all for the worse.Psychiatrists no longer make decisions in psychiatry. Lawyers do.The situation is not unusual or peculiar to mental-health. The defence force and its policy making are no longer in the hands of professionals. They seconded themselves to obtuse and abstruse legal opinion.The government cannot pass laws without asking its legal adviser. If it dares to do so, our high court strikes it down. An election decides who will represent us. The judiciary decides who will best serve themselves. And woe betides those who dare to object. The chutzpah to end all chutzpah is the learned reasoning.The self-appointed judges are defending democracy.When I was in Aberdeen, I met a guy at a party. He proclaimed,’ I am a pacifist, and I will fight anyone who opposes me.’His excuse was he was drunk on whisky.
How did this happen? Let’s return to Aharon—but this time another one.The Lord Chief Justice, Aharon Barak in a moment of unparalleled self-aggrandizement decided everything was judgeable. Everything was judgeable by the justices. One body was exempt. You will get no prizes for guessing who is above scrutinyThe present Aharon and his inheritors were to be henceforth the ultimate arbitrators in every process. In one stroke, the legal profession was invincible. The legal profession declared itself above us all.Unasked they took over every means of institutional monitoring, auditing and feed- back.Psychiatry is hamstrung. You may wonder why.Twice weekly a quasi- judicial body holds court in every Psychiatric Institution. Unbridled and uncontested the committees interfere in therapy and mandatory detention. The results are far-reaching and deleterious. Again, you may ask why? The legal profession claims to protect the fundamental rights of everyone to freedom. In the name of fundamental rights, the legal profession releases scores of patients whom psychiatrist deem dangerous.
The concept, 'human rights', is political.
As an ex-member of the new-left, I recognise it.It is not a legal concept.It is a social and political statement.The principle is passé. Society today is addressing another issue. Today's burning issue is how do we protect society having protected the individual.The solution can only come from those who represent us.The electoral booth alone decides who they are.
The ageing flower power generation is giving one last kick before becoming extinct. Corbyn and Saunders are the last dinosaurs of my generation.Aharon Barak and his groupies are a different proposition. They are trying to self-perpetuate themselves.Like Aharon’ s sons, Aharon Barak's next generation decided it is not responsible to anyone but itself. The legal profession is drawing fire.The fire will come; they are not above the will of the election box.The election decides who will be our lawmakers.Lawmakers decide which law will apply. Lawyers are part of the process of implementing the law.They are nothing else.
Israel is no longer a lawful country respecting the law. Israel is a country under the hegemony of lawyers. Lawyers who brazenly show a condescending lack of respect to the lawmakers.
The legal profession's behaviour, well-intentioned as they claim it to be, is destroying democratic process.No longer do they defend anyone and anything.Psychiatry has lost its way, so has the legal profession.
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