On the Bali 9 Duo

I oppose the death penalty. I oppose it per se. I oppose it regardless of the crime, and regardless who it is applied to. If, like me, you oppose the death penalty, oppose it outright, not because of the nationality of the victim.

Every year around the world thousands of people are put to death. Many are put to death via barbaric means for ‘crimes’ that shouldn’t be crimes. There are parts of the world where women are publicly stoned to death for the ‘crime’ of being a rape victim. There are places where women are drenched in acid until they are dead for the ‘crime’ of bringing shame upon their family. There are places where homosexuals are thrown from the roofs of ten story buildings for the ‘crime’ of being homosexual. People are put to death for changing religion, insulting their religion, or offending the leader of their country.

Where is the outrage and the media and political spectacle when these horrific forms of the death penalty are carried out? The politicians remain silent. The media says nothing. The general population don’t threaten travel embargoes or boycott products. And there are no candle-lit vigils on the victims’ behalf. To stay silent whilst these kinds of acts are taking place, but then be outraged because two of the victims happen to be Australian, is effectively saying that the life of a guilty Australian criminal is worth more than the life of an innocent Saudi rape victim, or an innocent Iraqi homosexual teenager.

Oppose the death penalty – I do. But make your opposition to it consistent and not hypocritical. Oppose it because it’s wrong – always wrong. Don’t oppose it because the victim happens to be the same nationality as you.

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