Where are we at?
We are now waiting to hear from the Judge. At any time she could call a meeting and announce her rulings regarding the two voir dires.
There was some discussion as to whether she would just email her decision to the Crown and Defence or have a formal meeting. Apparently - because of the Defence's last minute application to "stay the proceedings" she realized that the accused would need to be in the room to hear first hand her decision - which means we, as the public, can also be in the room.
I was relieved.
She said that she would come to a decision as soon as possible, given the pressure of time needed to come up with the closing arguments scheduled for May 11 & 12.
So that is where we are - we are waiting.
But the waiting is different than the waiting for the trial.
All of the evidence has been submitted. There will be no new evidence - no surprises.
Now it is about "interpretation."
Yes -- interpretations. I've never paid that much attention to the power of interpretation.
This came up on Friday - as well. During the closing voir dires both the Crown and Defence began to accuse each other of "interpretation." Yes -- everyone who had been so against interpretations - were all now engaged in interpreting.
Actually this whole trial has given me a new appreciation about interpretations so vividly argued during the testimony of each expert - including Chahal.
According to definition, an interpreter is someone "who translates orally for parties conversing in different languages - one who explains or expounds."
And it seems no matter what the "fact" or what the "evidence" is - you can always put it another way which we have seen over and over.
Yesterday, I had tea with an old friend of mine who is threatening to impose an entirely different interpretation onto my latest freshly launched book - then I intended. Apparently my words, even my most carefully chosen words, can mean something entirely different from one person to another - depending on the lens.
I remembered the first poem I wrote and published - a kind of self-disclosure poem with deep hidden meanings about my own inner psyche. I was astounded when the three most important people in my life at the time, read into it something very different than my intention.
Packaged, published and crafted to the best of my ability - I have to now give my book away for others to take and interpret for themselves.
Same with the six-week trial, it too has also been packaged, organized, exhibited, and transcribed into binders for the Judge, Crown and the Defence to interpret.
It is now all open to interpretation.
I think it is unfortunate that we will be missing the interpretation of the one person who has the most intimate knowledge of what happened November 30, 1984. But even though the accused is allowed to remain silent, I have no doubt that he is interpreting it all in his own way. I hope in the end, he chooses to learn from it all rather than close himself off from this opportunity to re-examine all of life.
We are all interpreting. It is a fragile exercise.
Most exercises of communications and interpretations are probably misguided and completely off the mark - we can expect that.
Yet the exercise of interpretation is worthwhile, because it reveals something of ourselves. It wasn't my poem that was on trial when my three important friends read it - my friends were. They revealed more about themselves than anything. I decided to love them anyway. Their interpretations were actually very endearing.
“There is no such thing as objectivity. We are all just interpreting signals from the universe and trying to make sense of them. Dim, shaky, weak, static-y little signals that only hint at the complexity of a universe we cannot begin to understand.” - Bones
After the misinterpretation of my first precious poem, I had to make a decision about becoming a writer. Would I continue to have the courage to write -- knowing I could possibly be misunderstood with every word?
I remember taking the poem to my father - "What does this poem mean to you?"
He read it - paused. "This poem is about you. You are revealing something very important about yourself." And then he told me what I had wanted to reveal. And his eyes told me that he understood.
All the misunderstandings in the world were worth that one moment in time. Truth passed between us.
As tenuous as interpretations are - when someone does "get it right" like my father -- that connection is worth it all.
About the trial, I know that I - the mother of Candace - cannot be entrusted with the interpretation of this case. My motives are suspect. I know that I cannot be objective. After all - I am the mother. I am allowed.
(But it has been a challenging and interesting exercise to try to be objective while at the same time respecting the mother in me. I've proven to be wrong many times throughout this 32 year process. I am glad that I don't have to make the final interpretation of the facts.)
I am glad that there is one person appointed for such a time as this -- someone who has the experience, the skill and a sound working knowledge of the law - who has been rightly mandated with this responsibility.
My prayer and hope is that she will truly "get it" -- what ever that means.
Meanwhile - we wait.
“All knowledge that is about human society, and not about the natural world, is historical knowledge, and therefore rests upon judgment and interpretation. This is not to say that facts or data are nonexistent, but that facts get their importance from what is made of them in interpretation… for interpretations depend very much on who the interpreter is, who he or she is addressing, what his or her purpose is, at what historical moment the interpretation takes place.” - Edward Said
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