To some degree, I am quite surprised at the uproar and dialogue surrounding the recent deaths of Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran. I might be blacklisted to admit that I cannot get on board. Imagine if Australians had this kind of passionate momentum towards other injustices in Australia that occur to innocent Australians?
I am not saying that I think they deserve to be killed. In my very personal opinion, they do not. If I was king of the world I would enforce capital punishment for the most heinous crimes, especially when the perpetrator shows a lack of remorse or rehabilitation. I have seen too many times in this country where the crime system has failed innocent Australians by being been too soft and lenient to perpetrators, just to have them re-offend again (I’m thinking of you Adrian Bayley). These murderers, rapists or pedophiles have committed such traumatic acts to their victims therefore I believe they do not deserve a second chance.
However, to me, despite Chan and Sukumaran’s incredibly deplorable act, I do not think this is worthy of death. The punishment, in my arguably ignorant opinion, does not fit the crime. It is much more complicated than that; it is a political and cultural imbroglio.
Australian’s cannot view Indonesia as the nemesis and it is unfair to tell Tony Abbott that he needs to “grow some balls.” From Australia’s cultural perspective on crime – which is generally to handle perpetrators’ feebly – killing two Australians for drug trafficking sounds outrageous. However, from Indonesia’s perspective, it is really not.
What kind of message would they be sending Australians if they changed their minds and showed mercy? That weakness would risk future Australians attempting to smuggle drugs in their country.
No matter how malicious it might appear to us Australians, Indonesia has a terrible drug problem in their country. And they have demonstrated clearly the consequences for trafficking drugs in.
I guess what really surprises me is the large scale emotional tirade and public backlash from Australians – placing this way out of proportion.
In Australia on average a woman is killed each week from partner violence. One in six Australian women have been the victim of sexual assault – by a non-partner – compared to one in 14 women around the world. An estimated one in four girls and between one and seven and one and 12 boys are victims of sexual assault. This is the large-scale issue we have right here in Australia; completely innocent people falling victim to abominable crimes, but these are largely silenced in the media, leaving it largely out of public protests.
I think the level of moral outrage towards the killings of Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran needs to be put into perspective with these statistics. The dialogue surrounding this issue describes these two as very hard done by, however they were aware of the incredibly dangerous crime they were committing and the consequences. It’s dangerous to empathise towards them like a victim of crime and forget in the process that they were the ones who committed it.
Like how Waleen Aly said on the Project said that the pair were ‘let down’ five times. Is he forgetting that they are not the victims here? That they forfeited their right to decency when they smuggled drugs into a foreign country?
And no matter how much we disagree with the degree it has been taken to, only a fool will now try to smuggle drugs to Indonesia again. And maybe – just maybe – this will help the drug emergency in Indonesia.