Random Drivel from your Average Tosser

...with your host, Binty McShae - whether you like it or not!

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Hypocrisy abounds!

Australia and South East Asia has been all a-buzz recently with the trial of Nguyen Tuong Van, the Aussie heroin smuggler, in Singapore. In recent editions of the Daily Propoganda and on countless news-based websites there have been letters from Australians, half of whom are stating that "all of Australia" condemns the fact that Singapore intends to follow the letter of it's laws and execute the guy, the other half likewise declaring that "all of Australia" stands behind Singapore's sovereign right to follow it's own rules without interference.

Now, aside from showing a problem with basic mathematics in Australia, this issue has raised some points of contention. But before I go into them I must be honest about my personal feelings.... I am against Capital Punishment and always have been. That, incidentally, does not make me wishy-washy or 'too-forgiving'. I believe that punishment should be appropriate to the crime, as hard as is necessary, but with it should come the opportunity for remorse and a chance to change. And I believe that no-one has the right to take a life, not even in the "eye for an eye" context (constantly quoted by the religious right, despite the fact that it's appearances in the Old Testament, Exodus 21:23-25 and Leviticus 24:19-20, are superceded by Matthew 5:38-39 - look it up if you don't believe me). But this is not what I am intending to bang on about in this post.......

One point noted in pro-execution letters is the hypocrisy of many anti-execution Australians. Do they cry out at the injustice of it all when it isn't their countryman facing the noose? Of course fucking not! Very few people do. And of course there's the fact that Singapore is it's own nation and shouldn't dilute it's laws at the whim of it's neighbour. Y'know what? I actually agree with that one. Of course by that I partly mean that I think Singapore should come to it's senses of it's own accord, but that's not the only reason. If bigger nations bully smaller nations into accepting their values then all they do is cause resentment and eventual backlash... the US and it's allies are already experiencing that.

Of course this type of hypocrisy is not only visible in attitudes toward Singapore but also in those emanating from there. Recently it was reported that Singapore is looking at introducing laws to prosecute it's citizens for commiting offences against Singaporean law in other countries where the laws may be different. The case in particular refers to an island barely an hour away where the legal age limit for sex is as low as 14. Men from Singapore apparently travel over for the express purpose of screwing girls barely into puberty. I don't like the idea of it myself, but that is considered a suitable age in that state. It might perhaps be one thing if this was being done to protect the girls in question but the reason behind it seems to be more that these actions do not hold up to Singaporean 'moral standards and laws'. Hmmm... much like Capital Punishment appears not to hold up to current Australian laws and standards.

I cannot say how old someone should be before they have sex - I'm not even sure that 16 (UK limit) is old enough. I certainly wasn't fucking mature enough to handle it properly until way after then. But the point is how can Singapore prosecute someone for not breaking a law somewhere just because the Singaporean government thinks it 'should' be a law? How long before other countries try it? If I go to Amsterdam and smoke pot will I get arrested in the UK? If an American citizen crosses the road at a place where crossing isn't designated in the UK, will he get arrested for jay-walking on his return to the US? Will an Englishman who has returned from France get locked up because whilst there he drove on the right instead of the left? How fucked up do we want to make this......?

In defending it's own sovereignty whilst simultaneously challenging that of its neighbour Singapore proves that hypocrisy and double standards are alive and well... but then regimes in virtually all countries seem to have an air of 'Do as I say, not as I do"....

Cheer m'dears!

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At Thursday, November 24, 2005 9:41:00 pm, Blogger Brewski said...

I love most drugs but never carry shit across borders. I am absolutely against state-sanctioned murder, but respect the laws of every country. If you are fucking stupid enough to attempt smuggling over borders where capital punishment is enforced you deserve to die, you fucking spastic. Pure naive stupidity, I have no sympathy whatsoever.

At Friday, November 25, 2005 11:26:00 am, Blogger Binty McShae said...

I kind of agree... I am always paranoid when travelling because although I don't carry shit around it would be so easy for someone to plant it on you. In this guys case, though, the heroin was strapped to his leg - can't get out of that one! But when you consider the fact that he was trying to raise cash to save his brother from loan sharks.... there are always a dozen sides to everything!

At Sunday, November 27, 2005 5:12:00 pm, Blogger Brewski said...

Loan sharks or not (and that is another realm of idiocy) his actions remain simply retarded. There is just no excuse for it, ever. There are other myriad desperate ways to escape desperation. Stupid fucking cunt he is.

At Monday, November 28, 2005 12:10:00 am, Blogger Andraste said...

Sounds like natural selection, then.

At Friday, December 02, 2005 11:41:00 am, Blogger Gay Erasmus said...

Interesting post.

I personally don't think the views expressed here in Australia have much to do with Australians seeking to bully Singaporeans (we have our own issues about being a colonial underdog). I'd also point out that many of the people who have taken issue with this case have expressed their grave concern at examples of capital punishment that involved foreigners; after all, Amnesty International, which hosted many of the candlelight vigils here, is a global, not a national, organization.

At the same time, I think it's not unreasonable for people to have a particular interest in the welfare of their countrymen.

As so often, I can't help but think of John 10:10: "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full."


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