I realise that some people struggle with the thought. It came up for example with the case of the nun who runs the orphanage who looks like she knows the toys carried by Luke Chetcuti come from surplus profits from strip joints and whatever other ancillary vice possibly goes with that.
There are two schools of thought about what she would do. One side looks at the ends and turns its gaze from the means. The kiddies in the orphanage are getting toys and they’re happy. The nun’s job is to take care of the kids so why should the provenance matter?
The other side considers accepting the gifts as complicity in reputational laundering which in itself helps cover up the wrongdoing that needs laundering. That’s complicity and is aggravated by the fact that the suffering of the victims is made worse by cooperation in the crime.
Now that example is far from Adrian Delia’s wreath at the Daphne memorial. Though not very far.
The wreath is also reputational laundry, not unlike the toys at the orphanage. And again there can be two schools of thought for this. One says that what matters is the gesture. Bringing flowers is better than not bringing flowers. Coming for five minutes in a media circus in the morning is better than not coming at all. So Adrian Delia should have been allowed to get along with his ritual undisturbed.
Or you can look beneath the surface. You don’t have to look deep. Consider this Facebook exchange by people who form the thin crowd of support around the PN leader, the last men standing that came in with him and forced everyone else to walk away. In their innocent transparency they speak their mind and say what they really think about how deserving of flowers the memorial to Daphne Caruana Galizia is.
These are not just the last trolls standing. They are PN candidates and nominees. This is what is left of the political party who as Dione Borg callously and painfully reminded us used to fight for free speech and democracy once. As these people here blithely put it they support the government’s daily destruction of the protest site. They waive the flag of the government like Manuel Mallia does. The same Manuel Mallia who once endorsed Dione Borg’s book ‘lest we forget’ the violence of the Labour Party against free speech and assembly in the 1980s.
They’ve all gone to the other side.
When you know this is what they think — when you know this is the company Adrian Delia keeps — when you know he doesn’t mean it, because you know his best buddies won’t mind saying they don’t — would you accept flowers from these people?
Would you let them wash their rotten reputation in the blood of your sister?