Saturday, December 03, 2005

Van Nguyen pic taken from The Age

I know I am a bit late now and I am sure it has been spoken about to death (bad expression considering) but still I have to express it in the only public forum I have.

RIP Van Nguyen.

I don't condone heroin and especially heroin trafficking.

But killing him in one of the most inhumane ways (hanging) has established nothing!

The government should have used him to go after one of the drug lords instead of killing a drug mule.

By the sounds of it half of the australian population doesn't feel the same way.

I understand that those who know someone who was killed by heroin want to blame someone, and why not pick the drug mule, i mean he is contributing to the problem.

Unfortunately though its not the simple.

A small part of me that wants to scream 'but you choose to take and buy heroin'.

I'm sure if I wanted to buy heroin and try it I could. But its a choice I and almost everyone I know chooses not to take.

The rest of the population though has to realise we (being the half opposed to the hanging) are not against him being convicted, or being inprisoned. But against the death penalty. And for some its not even about the death penalty, its about the horrible method.

Whats wrong with hanging?(as taken from wsws

If the hangman’s rope is too long, the victim’s falling body weight can result in death by decapitation. If too short, death by strangulation can take as long as 45 minutes. When the rope is correctly measured, the victim loses consciousness when his or her neck is broken in the fall. Brain death then takes about six minutes, while full body death takes a further ten minutes. According to the US-based Death Penalty Information Center: “If the inmate has strong neck muscles ... or the noose has been wrongly positioned, the fracture-dislocation is not rapid and death results from slow asphyxiation. If this occurs the face becomes engorged, the tongue protrudes, the eyes pop, the body defecates, and violent movements of the limbs occur.”

And the whole not allowing the mother to hug her son before he is killed is pure bullshit. What the hell is she going to do in the last minutes before he is killed that can be done through hugging but not holding hands? Sounds like a power game to me.

I'm left with no answers forRobert Richers question:

The great question is: what are we doing about it? We need to campaign hard and permanently to make sure that this does not happen again.

I am not sure about the whole boycott Singapore thing. Don't get me wrong i'm all for some types of boycotts (animal products, sweatshop made items, items tested on animals, and other companies that contribute to suffering of any kind of abuse) but i'm just not sure what it will accomplish with Singapore. With most of the things I boycott its almost about choosing a better alternative; no sweat shoes instead of converse for example. Besides are we going to start boycotting every country with the death penalty? I guess in all honesty I could since i'm poor and won't be travelling anytime in the near future anyway.

Yes like half the nation I am left sad and feeling kind of hopeless.


shane said...

So why didn't any Aussie like you speak up against the method of hanging in Singapore as a capital punishment up until now when Van was about to be executed?

Don't get me wrong. Although I don't oppose the death penalty, I felt Van should have been granted a clemency in this case. But the way I see it, Aussies can be downright hypocritical when one of their own is about to be punished for flouting the law in other countries.

Think: Schapelle Corby, Michelle Leslie, the Bali Nine.

And if you thought lethal injection is a better alternative, I refer you to the following links:

kristy said...

Actually I was one of the ones who was talking about about Van Nguyen when Schapelle Corby was being prosecuted and he was first sentenced. I was actually saying how disgusting it was that Australians cared more about the white girl than the vietnamese Australian who is about to be killed. During that time he appeared as one small news story while she had several stories every day.

I did speak up then, i've also spoken about the death penalty before and yes always been against it. No matter who or what for.

I also was one of the ones to make a hand outline like the ones seen in the picture above and send it in protest to his mother along with thousands of others.

I also send forth a email of protest months ago.

But lets face it i am and most of us are powerless when it comes to doing anything about it.

Anonymous said...

Something has to be done about the arrogance of the Singaporean authoritarian government. Unfortunately, Australia is not a very strong country, and it's leader seem clearly lacking in courage and forcefulness. If a citizen of a powerful country is ever on death row in Singapore, I'd like to see the leader of that powerful country tell the Singaporean government unequivocally that if they carry out the execution, it will be treated as an act of war. Then, if they went ahead and executed him anyway, I'd like to see two cruise missles launched taking out both the President and the Prime Minister of Singapore, followed by a warning to whomever replaces the eliminated leaders that another execution of one of their citizen will result in Singapore's sovernty being completely revoked. Singapore has much riches, and I'd love to see it plundered by a powerful country.
Eric von Schonberg

shane said...

Well, Eric, it's people like you who perpetuates notions of Australian hypocrisy. Would you have bothered with all that war-whoring and tough talk were Van Nguyen a Chinese national or Burmese with the same sob story to tell?

War, indeed. Where is your concern for the 40,000+ people killed in Iraq since the the US-led invasion or the 50,000+ refugees who have died in Darfur? The majority of these people have committed no crime and have as much and probably more right to live than what Van Nguyen did.

But then again, Eric, with all that tough talk, you'd probably have done Hitler proud.

kristy said...

shane just curious do you have a blog?