Friday, November 18, 2005


Friday Morning Rant

Just to be clear, this is going to be one of those ranty posts where I make my stance on certain issues very clear. While normally I'm very supportive of debate and will happily listen to different points of view, this isn't one of those times. If you don't agree with what I'm saying, then stop reading. Thanks, but I'm not interested in your comments today.

I oppose the death penalty. There is no crime that will be magically undone by killing the perpetrator. No justice system on Earth is perfect enough to have not convicted an innocent person, so how can they be sure when it comes to deathrow (unless your in Texas).

Last year, an unfortunate Australian named Van Tuong Nguyen was caught with just under 400grams of heroin at a Singapore airport. As anyone who's dumb enough to try and traffic drugs through Asia should know, Singapore has the death penalty for drug smugglers (if you get caught carrying more than 15grams of heroin, it's mandatory).

Obviously from my comments above, I find this a pretty evil thing. Don't get me wrong - he was trying to smuggle one of the most soul destroying drugs around, and most certainly should be punished. But is killing him isn't going to get even one person cured of their heroin addiction? No.

But that's not what I'm ranting about. The Singapore Government has set the final date for the execution in early December, and this morning they were discussing it on the commercial radio station we listen to on the way to work.

This is the bit where I get angry, and you may want to stop reading.

One of the presenters expressed views pretty similar to mine - the death penalty is always A Bad Idea. Then all the bogan, redneck listeners started calling in (and I am paraphrasing a bit). "He knew the risks!", "He knew full well he was going to destroy lives back here!", "It's different from Schapelle Corby - he had the drugs on him!", "He was going to profit from this!", "I don't think it will solve anything, but killing him might act as a deterrent!", "I don't support corporal punishment, but he should die!" (yes, the last one actually did say "corporal" not "capital").

What is it with these people? Why do they seem to think it's a case of either killing him in cold blood, or letting him off scott free? Why do they feel the need to tell everyone how much they don't support the death penalty, but to then go on about how happy they'd be to see someone die?

And, if you really want to get picky, why is it that none of them actually know about the case? This isn't some hardened criminal. This is a guy who'd agreed to do this to try and pay off his brother's debts. He's been cooperating fully with the authorities since he was caught, and from all accounts has shown a lot of remorse.

It all makes me very angry! Aren't we good enough at killing each other already?

If you agree with any of those stupid, stupid people who were calling into the radio station, fine, but do it somewhere I can't hear you. If you want to actually do something useful, check out Amnesty International. There's not much time left, and things don't look good, but maybe it will make a difference.


Sorry if I offended anyone, but I did tell you to stop reading.

Edit: And after recieving a comment 5mins after posting from one of the people I'm ranting about, I'm turning off comments.

Brave, by the way Mr Anonymous - not even putting your name to comment. Wow, look at the level of respect I've got for you now. It's all the way down there, that tiny little dot....

Innocent people die every day, so who's going to miss a drug smuggler. Shoot him.

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