Friday, November 11, 2005
  Help me to help you.
During the course of the debate over the death penalty, those supporting the clemency for a drug trafficker currently on death row have drawn a divide between those who are for partial abolishment (drug trafficking only) and total abolishment. Some have been called 'hipocritical' for their partiality and criticising them of their real moral grounds.

Eventually when one is pissed off enough, a barrage albeit articulate barrage of words can see some interesting arguments. In particular, I liked this analagous dialogue:

"The problem is that if you do not really what your guiding principles are, then you will essentially end up with a George Bush type of problem.

You invade Iraq and kill people. You say it's because Saddam has weapons of mass destruction and these must be found and destroyed. Then it turns out that Saddam has no WMDs. So you say that actually you're invading Iraq and killing people because Saddam has terrorist links, and so you continue to stick around in Iraq and kill people. Then it turns out that Saddam has no terrorist links, and that terrorist attacks continue to take place merrily around the world even though Iraq is quite incapacitated. So you then say actually you're attacking Iraq because you want to bring peace, democracy etc to Iraq. Then you're found abusing Iraqi prisoners of war in Abu Gharaib, and you're hand out highly lucrative commercial contracts to your own US companies to rebuild Iraq. And up to today, there is STILL no democracy and freedom and peace in Iraq - although their hospitals and infrastructure and water supply systems are still devastated.

And then you wonder why so much of the world hates the US, and why American students travelling in other countries today sew Canadian flags on their backpacks and pretend to be Canadian. Meanwhile your troops are still stuck in Iraq; you have no graceful way to pull them out; and the costs of the war continue to escalate. And your own US citizens distrust you.

This is an analogy to what I think is likely to happen if you're not clear about what exactly it is about the death penalty you're objecting to. You will muddy everything up and cause problems for yourself. And you won't be able to solve them - because you simply don't even know WHAT you really want." - Mr Wang says so (comment on Singabloodypore article: The Death Penalty is Abhorrent. Full Stop.)

Even though I agree with Mr Wang on the total abolishment of the death penalty, I don't think it necessary to attack partial supporters...yet. Common ground is important if we are to have our loudest voices yet against it. And despite is excellent analogy, I don't think people who partially pursue its abolishment will face the same consequences as Bush and the American people.

But really, you have to love everything about the analogy.
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"Those weapons of mass destruction have got to be somewhere." - George W. Bush (March 24, 2004)

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