Scene Amerigo Bonasera dalam Godfather : Interpretasi Wajah Hukum dalam perspektif Mario Puzzo

TheLaw

Novel The Godfather – Mario Puzzo, di publikasikan pertama kali tahun 1969. Kami membacanya pertama kali tahun 1994. Bagi kami novel ini merupakan salah satu karya sepanjang masa. Story World-nya unik; dan alih-alih hanya memandangnya sebagai cerita gangster mafia, novel ini sarat akan simbol atau metafora. Pesan yang hendak disampaikan dikemas dalam kisah suksesi kepala keluarga (Don Vito Corleone) kepada penerusnya (Michael Corleone) melalui sebuah revenge. Kami sendiri cukup senang untuk membaca novel ini lebih dari sekali. Bagi kami, novel ini sendiri memenuhi salah satu kriteria great book sebagaimana kriteria great book menurut Alder Mortimer.

Salah satu yang menarik adalah apa yang coba disampaikan melalui simbol karakter Amerigo Bonasera. Karakter Amerigo Bonasera hanya merupakan sebuah karakter minor dalam novel tersebut. Namun menjadi menarik ketika karakter ini diangkat tepat pada bagian-bagian awal novel dan langsung memberi pondasi pandangan selain kesan dar – der – dor seperti yang tampil di permukaanya. Simbol apa sih sebenarnya Godfather ? Apa peran yang sedang dimainkannya dan kenapa dia hadir ditengah-tengah masyarakat.

Apa pesan yang hendak disampaikan oleh scene tersebut? Untuk memahaminya, berikut ini adalah cuplikan dari scene Amerigo Bonasera dalam novel tersebut.

“Amerigo Bonasera sat in New York Criminal Court Number 3 and waited for justice; vengeance on the men who had so cruelly hurt his daughter, who had tried to dishonor her. The judge, a formidably heavy-featured man, rolled up the sleeves of his black robe as if to physically chastise the two young men standing before the bench. His face was cold with majestic contempt. But there was something false in all this that Amerigo Bonasera sensed but did not yet understand.

The judge went on. “You acted like wild beasts in a jungle and you are fortunate you did not sexually molest that poor girl or I’d put you behind bars for twenty years.” The judge paused, his eyes beneath impressively thick brows flickered slyly toward the sallow-faced Amerigo Bonasera, then lowered to a stack of probation reports before him. He frowned and shrugged as if convinced against his own natural desire. He spoke again. “But because of your youth, your clean records, because of your fine families, and because the law in its majesty does not seek vengeance, I hereby sentence you to three years’ confinement to the penitentiary. Sentence to be suspended.”

Only forty years of professional mourning kept the overwhelming frustration and hatred from showing on Amerigo Bonasera’s face. His beautiful young daughter was still in the hospital with her broken jaw wired together; and now these two animales went free? It had all been a farce. He watched the happy parents cluster around their darling sons. Oh, they were all happy now, they were smiling now. The black bile, sourly bitter, rose in Bonasera’s throat, overflowed through tightly clenched teeth. He used his white linen pocket handkerchief and held it against his lips.He was standing so when the two young men strode freely up the aisle, confident and cool-eyed, smiling, not giving him so much as a glance. He let them pass without saying a word, pressing the fresh linen against his mouth.  The parents of the animales were coming by now, two men and two women his age but more American in their dress. They glanced at him, shamefaced, yet in their eyes was an odd, triumphant defiance.

Out of control, Bonasera leaned forward toward the aisle and shouted hoarsely, “You will weep as I have wept– I will make you weep as your children make me weep”– the linen at his eyes now”.

Mario Puzzo melalui Bonasera, mencoba mengungkap sebuah citra hukum dari sebuah institusi legal yang diakui dalam masyarakat. Seperti sosok sang pengadil: tangguh dan punya kekuatan tanpa kompromi (The judge, a formidably heavy-featured man, rolled up the sleeves of his black robe as if to physically chastise the two young men standing before the bench) dan tidak bisa diintervensi oleh kepentingan apapun (His face was cold with majestic contempt, berwajah dingin berarti tidak ada hasrat atau tidak ada selera atau tidak menunjukan intention bagi apapun). Dan tujuan hukum sendiri adalah sebagai alat untuk mewujudkan keadilan, dan keadilan itu adalah si pelanggar mendapat pembalasan yang setimpal dengan dampak yang dibuatnya – (justice; vengeance on the men who had so cruelly hurt his daughter; You will weep as I have wept – I will make you weep as your children make me weep). Hukum bersifat memaksa, bahwa dengan penegakan keadilan yang setimpal diharapkan akan berdampak ketertiban ketertiban (coba lihat bagian ini: The judge went on. “You acted like wild beasts in a junglebeast in a jungle berhadapan dengan judge – tata aturan hukum dengan kekuatan tanpa kompromi dan tidak bisa diintevensi; dengan kata lain: because far and deeply within our own self, we keep and preserve the beast, maka harapannya adalah beast yang telah terpapar aturan yang bertindak sebagai alat penegak keadilan yang setimpal seharusnya menjadi tertib).

Namun kenyataanya, hukum dari sebuah institusi legal yang diakui tidaklah sepenuhnya tangguh dan bukannya tanpa kompromi, juga tidak sepenuhnya bebas dari intervensi kepetingan (but because of your youth, your clean records, because of your fine families, and because the law in its majesty does not seek vengeance, I hereby sentence you to three years’ confinement to the penitentiary. Sentence to be suspended). Dan hal yang paling mendasari kekecewaan Bonasera adalah ia tak pernah sepenuhnya dapat diterima menjadi bagian dari anggota masyarakat tersebut. Setelah bertahun-tahun berupaya  untuk dapat menjadi anggota masyarakat dimana ia berada, Bonasera tetap saja dipandang sebagai Sicilian yang minoritas, dimana ia tak memperolah hak yang sama dengan yang lain di mata hukum sebagaimana yang dijanjikan (coba lihat bagian ini: The parents of the animals were coming by now, two men and two women his age but more American in their dress. They glanced at him, shamefaced, yet in their eyes was an odd, triumphant defiance. Ini adalah bentuk ungkapan diskriminasi bagi Bonesara. bukankah Bonasera juga berpenampilan sama: American in his dress? Namun dalam balutan Amerika-nya, Bonasera tetap saja merupakan kelompok minoritas dan tak pernah mendapat hak sama dengan anggota masyarakat lainnya).

Demikianlah. Bonasera kemudian memutuskan untuk mendapat keadilan melalui Godfather.

Godfather is a man who presents a child at baptism and promises to take responsibility for them; or a man who presents a candidate for baptism or confirmation and undertakes responsibility for the person’s religious education or spiritual welfare (https://www.merriam-webster.com). Pengertian Godfather kemudian meluas ketika ditempatkan kedalam konteks sosial secara luas.

Alkisah di wilayah Sisilia atau Corsica sekitar abad pertengahan sering terjadi perseteruan antar keluarga yang berakhir pada pertempuran berdarah-darah. Perseteruan ini bisa berlangsung bertahun – tahun. Salah satu cara menghentikan perseteruan yang merugikan ini adalah bila salah satu dari kepala keluarga yang saling berseteru meminta kepala keluarga lain yang menjadi seterunya untuk menjadi orang tua baptis bagi anaknya atau bagi anak salah satu anggota keluarganya. Menurut keyakinan masa itu, siapapun yang diminta menjadi orang tua baptis merupakan kehormatan dan tidak boleh di tolak. Selain itu, kepala keluarga yang meminta kepala keluarga lainnya untuk menjadi orang tua baptis bagi anaknya merupakan symbol bahwa keluarga yang meminta tersebut telah menyerah dan mempercayakan perlindungannya kepada kepala keluarga yang diminta menjadi orang tua baptis. Kepala keluarga yang telah menyerah ini kemudian menjadi anggota keluarga dari kepala keluarga yang menjadi orang tua baptis. Kepala keluarga yang menjadi orang tua baptis kemudian memiliki kewajiban selayaknya orang tua kepada anak yaitu mendedikasikan dirinya untuk merawat dan melindungi dengan sepenuh hati semua anggota keluarganya, termasuk pihak-pihak atau keluarga lainnya yang telah menyerah dan mempercayakan perlindungan padanya.

Hal yang sama kemudian dilakukan oleh Bonasera: meminta keadilan pada Don Corleone dengan mengakui sang Don sebagai Godfather. Berikut adalah kutipan scene selanjutnya dari Amerigo Bonasera.

“Bonasera Said “I went to the police like a good American. The two boys were arrested. They were brought to trial. The evidence was overwhelming and they pleaded guilty. The judge sentenced them to three years in prison and suspended the sentence. They went free that very day. I stood in the courtroom like a fool and those bastards smiled at me. And then I said to my wife: ‘We must go to Don Corleone for justice”.

The Don had bowed his head to show respect for the man’s grief. But when he spoke, the words were cold with offended dignity. “Why did you go to the police? Why didn’t you come to me at the beginning of this affair?” Bonasera muttered almost inaudibly, “What do you want of me? Tell me what you wish. But do what I beg you to do.” There was something almost insolent in his words.  Don Corleone said gravely, “And what is that? That I cannot do. You are being carried away”.

Bonasera said loudly, clearly, “I will pay you anything you ask.” Don Corleone rose from behind the desk. His face was still impassive but his voice rang like cold death. “We have known each other many years, you and I,” he said to the undertaker, “but until this day you never came to me for counsel or help. I can’t remember the last time you invited me to your house for coffee though my wife is godmother to your only child. Let us be frank. You spurned my friendship. You feared to be in my debt.” 

Bonasera murmured, “I didn’t want to get into trouble.”

The Don held up his hand. “No. Don’t speak. You found America a paradise. You had a good trade, you made a good living, you thought the world a harmless place where you could take your pleasure as you willed. You never armed yourself with true friends. After all, the police guarded you, there were courts of law, you and yours could come to no harm. You did not need Don Corleone. Very well. My feelings were wounded but I am not that sort of person why thrusts his friendship on those who do not value it– on those who think me of little account.” The Don paused and gave the undertaker a polite, ironic smile. “Now you come to me and say, ‘Don Corleone give me justice.’ And you do not ask with respect. You do not offer me your friendship. You come into my home on the bridal day of my daughter and you ask me to do murder and you say”–here the Don’s voice became a scornful mimicry–” ‘I will pay you anything.’ No, no, I am not offended,but what have I ever done to make you treat me so disrespectfully?”

Bonasera cried out in his anguish and his fear, “America has been good to me. I wanted to be a good citizen. I wanted my child to be American.” The Don clapped his hands together with decisive approval. “Well spoken. Very fine.Then you have nothing to complain about. The judge has ruled. America has ruled. Bring your daughter flowers and a box of candy when you go visit her in the hospital. That will comfort her. Be content. After all, this is not a serious affair, the boys were young, high-spirited, and one of them is the son of a powerful politician. No, my dear Amerigo, you have always been honest. I must admit, though you spurned my friendship, that I would trust the given word of Amerigo Bonasera more than I would any other man’s. So give me your word that you will put aside this madness. It is not American. Forgive. Forget. Life is full of misfortunes.”

Bonasera said “I ask you for justice.” Don Corleone said curtly, “The court gave you justice.” Bonasera shook his head stubbornly. “No. They gave the youths justice. They did not give me justice.”  The Don acknowledged this fine distinction with an approving nod, then asked, “What is your justice?”

“An eye for an eye,” Bonasera said. “You asked for more,” the Don said. “Your daughter is alive.” Bonasera said reluctantly, “Let them suffer as she suffers.” The Don waited for him to speak further. Bonasera screwed up the last of his courage and said, “How much shall I pay you?” It was a despairing wail. Don Corleone turned his back. It was a dismissal. Bonasera did not budge. Finally, sighing, a good-hearted man who cannot remain angry with an erring friend, Don Corleone turned back to the undertaker, who was now as pale as one of his corpses. Don Corleone was gentle, patient. “Why do you fear to give your first allegiance to me?” he said. “You go to the law courts and wait for months. You spend money on lawyers who know full well you are to be made a fool of. You accept judgment from a judge who sells himself like the worst whore in the streets. Years gone by, when you needed money, you went to the banks and paid ruinous interest, waited hat in hand like a beggar while they sniffed around, poked their noses up your very asshole to make sure you could pay them back.

The Don paused, his voice became sterner. “But if you had come to me, my purse would have been yours. If you had come to me for justice those scum who ruined your daughter would be weeping bitter tears this day. If by some misfortune an honest man like yourself made enemies they would become my enemies”– the Don raised his arm, finger pointing at Bonasera– “and then, believe me, they would fear you.”  Bonasera bowed his head and murmured in a strangled voice, “Be my friend. I accept.” Don Corleone put his hand on the man’s shoulder. “Good,” he said, “you shall have your justice. Someday, and that day may never come, I will call upon you to do me a service in return.”

Ada beberapa pesan yang dapat kita tangkap pada scene tersebut. Bonasera hanya ingin memulihkan harga dirinya dengan mendapatkan keadilan yang sesuai harapannya. Dia berharap bahwa institusi yang diakui di masyarakat dan dipercayainya dapat melakukannya. Namun ketika institusi itu tak dapat memberikannya, maka ia dipaksa untuk melakukannya dengan cara dan melalui kekuatan yang justru dianggap bertentangan dengan aturan yang ada.

Ketika sebuah institusi legal yang diakui dan dipercaya dalam sebuah masyarakat gagal memenuhi harapan dan tidak dapat memberikan jaminan bahwa seseorang atau sekelompok masyarakat lainnya mendapat hak yang setara, maka kelompok-kelompok yang ada dalam masyarakat itu sendiri yang akan mengambil alih dan memberikan apa yang tidak bisa diberikan oleh institusi legal tersebut. Keberadaan Godfather justru memberikan kesempatan bagi anggota masyarakat minoritas untuk dapat tampil sama dengan anggota masyarakat lainnya. Dalam Godfather, keadilan yang diharapkan oleh Bonasera bisa di dapatkan. Jadi pada dasarnya Godfather juga bisa memberi keadilan dan memaksakan ketertiban melalui sanksi yang dijatuhkan kepada pelanggar aturan serta – dengan caranya sendiri – menjamin bahwa setiap anggota masyarakat sama haknya. Dan ini terjadi justru karena ada karena celah dalam sistem sosial kita kalau tak mau dibilang bahwa pada dasarnya kita sendirilah yang ikut berperan membangun dan memberi ruang bagi keberadaan kelompok tersebut untuk hadir di tengah masyarakat.

Well Gentlemen. Kita kadang-kadang sering mendapati diri kita membangun rumah megah, lalu kemudian memilih salah satu atau beberapa dari anggota keluarga kita untuk keluar dari rumah megah yang kita bangun. Dilain kesempatan, malah kita sendirilah yang hidup diluar rumah megah yang kita bangun itu. Terakhir, Which one is the bad guy? Orang yang diberi amanah untuk berada di balik institusi legal yang diakui oleh masyarakat namun tak menjalankan perannya atau The Godfather yang terlanjur diberi cap bad guy yang justru hadir ketika masyarakat membutuhkannya. Hati-hati dalam memilih, karena kita sedang menunjuk diri kita!

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