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  • Dr Navin C Naidu

Towards textbook obscurity

Updated: Oct 27, 2022

Slouching towards textbook obscurity is the pre-occupation of the host of guarantees offered by the State to benefit its citizens, but it is robustly rejuvenated temporarily during National Day or Independence Day celebrations. Meanwhile capitalist higher education institutions spare no effort to resuscitate the ideals of State and citizen co-existence in a democracy.

The first casualty is usually the concept of democracy supposedly designed to ensure sound economic policies and social justice under the rule of law. These lofty and supposedly noble principles seriously undermine national schemes, patriotic themes and cultural memes.

The “rule of law” is another willing victim in the scheme of things. European legal scholars like W. Friedmann (Legal Theory), Wolfgang Horn, Werner Birkenmaier and Roman Herzog went to great lengths to elucidate what the rule of law really suggests, means and represents.

The rule of law best describes a State which does not meddle with the individual and generally exists to benefit its citizens. Or, man does not exist to serve the State, but vice versa. This gains strength and prominence in textbook obscurity as a perfect rote item for written examinations.

Fundamental rights and human rights stand in line, too, ready to be rushed into textbook obscurity by the passing of unjust laws that threaten constitutional firewalls. State interference generally assumes geometric progression dimensions.

The great philosopher Immanuel Kant said that the constitutionality of a State depended on the existence of written laws that are just and impartial. Choking and strangling written constitutions and laws cause more than tremors and traumas that forces the moral man to resort to the law of the jungle – survival of the fittest.


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