The Shapelle Corby circus continues to roll on here in Australia tonight with the screening of a prime time TV special on Channel Nine. (If you have no idea who Shapelle Corby is, check here). The program will apparently tell the "untold story" and a live audience that will offer their verdit at the completion of the show. Like lots of people at the moment, Nine will cash in tonight by pulling a big audience. What'll it do with the advertising revenue? How much did it pay the people who will appear in the show?
Who knows, but it is all getting a bit. Whether Shapelle is some sort of Marijuana Queen or not, I dunno, but between the swarming mass of reporters, dozing judiciary members, colourful lawyers and the ever expanding number of assorted hangers-on basking in the limelight and baking in the Balinese sun, it's often forgotten that in the middle of all of this is a girl who's life is at stake. It's bloody crazy, and I don't get it.
Let's just imagine the outcry in Australia if the Indonesian government, president and media interests took a such a massive interest in a case of an Indonesian citizen on trial in this country. There'd be a huge outcry of "bugger off" if was taken up at the highest levels of our Government and our legal systems and processes, with TV crews and the media nosing about, day after day.
I don't think that we are a racist country- far from it, but the fact that many Australians think they can comment on Indonesian justice and legal system without real understanding or concern does smack of racism.
And whilst I have no real personal concern for any of them , I reckon some people would do well to remember that our government wrongly jailed an Australian resident, Cornelia Rau, and wrongly deported another, Vivian Alvarez Solon. But where's the outpouring of concern for the horrible experiences of these women? Or what if the person on trial was not a, young, slim, firm bodied, Australian girl, but was some short, fat, plain faced immigrant with an Asian name?
Would we care as much? Would the Nine Network run a prime time special on their experiences?
At the end of the day, Shapelle Corby strikes me as being quite intelligent, confident and in control of herself. She knows that she won't spend the rest of her lif in jail. One way or another whe will come home, and she will be rich and famous for the rest of her life.