Law, the Films of Peckinpah & Unsupportable Dichotomies

What becomes apparent, revisiting the films of Peckinpah, particularly THE WILD BUNCH and PAT GARRET AND BILLY THE KID is Peckinpah’s stance on Law in the dimming days of the west and beyond. And it’s not a favorable view.

The Law in the films of Peckinpah is nothing more than crime tamed to serve the rich, crime in the service of rich interests.

If we accept the definition of crime at its basest definition, to be ‘the violation of the other’, be that a violation of property or person, than in Peckinpah’s world the law is such violation used in the service of monied interests. It is crime not just organized, it is crime… sanctified.

If you as a private citizen go over and kill citizens in Iraq or Haiti or Afghanistan it is a crime. But if you do it at the behest of monied interests, that same crime is suddenly sanctified.

Let’s take the crime of bombing. That same crime of bombing, vilified for the individual (suicide bomber) becomes glorified if that crime is done en masse (bomber pilots) for your betters; done for your masters… corporate and civic.

Whether in the fictions of Peckinpah or the ‘reality’ of our Nightly News, it is an unsupportable dichotomy.

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