Oscar Pistorius – A PR Nightmare and rightly so!

By Tricia Liverpool

Oscar Pistorius – A PR Nightmare and rightly so!

​Anyone who has been following the Oscar Pistorious trial is aware of the facts which are the Paralympian pumped four bullets through his bathroom door killing his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp who was inside. Where things get a little grey is whether or not this was a premeditated murder or an accident given Pistorious’ defence has been built around the high number of home invasions in South Africa, which led to him mistaking his girlfriend for an intruder.

As I was not there that night, I can’t pass judgement, but I can become indignant every time I hear someone expressing concern about how killing someone affects the perpetrator’s career!

Barry Roux the lawyer for Oscar Pistorious, has argued that his client has suffered quite enough by now and should be spared prison. According to Hadley Freeman who writes for The Guardian “Roux said that Pistorius “lost a person he loved” – editorial interjection here: he “lost” her because he killed her – “[he lost] his self-respect, most of his friends, his career, all his properties, all his money. He’s lost everything.””

This, of course, is not strictly true: he hasn’t lost his life, unlike Steenkamp. But then, Roux added sorrowfully, “He has lost his sponsors.”

Yes unfortunately Pistorius probably won’t be bagging any more lucrative contracts from Thierry Mugler, but such is the price one pays for shooting a gun in the middle of the night at a noise you hear in your house without bothering to check if it’s actually your girlfriend.

“There was an accused and a victim … and the accused became the victim,” Roux intoned solemnly. Really?!

Even South Africa’s president Jacob Zuma recently criticised Oscar Pistorius’s defence team for arguing the Paralympian should be spared prison because he is disabled and “has money”.

Pistorius’s lawyers called expert witnesses last week to testify that South African jails are ill-equipped for disabled people because, for example, the showers lack handrails. His lawyer warned that even in a hospital section the athlete would be exposed to diseases.

“I’m not sure why that comes into the picture,” Zuma told the Guardian in Pretoria. “They were taking that too far in my view. There are people who are [physically] challenged in prisons; it’s not an issue here. That brings an unfortunate thing, an added thing, because a man has money.”

The president added: “I thought that was an unfortunate debate. You don’t need it, because there are people who are disabled who are in prison. Why it is raised as if he was the first one to be convicted? I thought they were pushing it too far.”

Whether he killed his girlfriend on purpose or not, I would suggest Barry Roux & Co are definitely killing the career of Oscar Pistorious and to be honest, I for one cannot sympathise!

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