Tuesday, April 04, 2006

An eye for an eye

The only man who is being tried for the 9/11 attacks on America is Zacarias Moussaoui. Yesterday he was found to be ‘eligible to face the death penalty'

Who will this help? What will it achieve? There is no victory in revenge. The fact that the USA, the self declared, champions of democracy, still stand by their right to take life never ceases to appall me. This archaic belief that the ‘good’ have the right to kill the’ bad’ is a poison which permeates American society. How can they teach their children that ‘just because Jack hit you doesn’t mean you can hit him back’, when the death penalty is based on this very train of thought?

It is stronger to ‘rise above it’, my parents always told me. This is a difficult lesson to live by and I am as guilty as the next of joining the lowest in the gutter at times. A society that justifies execution as a punishment for anything is not, in my mind, a civilized one. The moral high ground is a place within in world affairs which the US inhabits under false pretences. They do not practice what they preach. This is not only true in the case of the death penalty, it is the case with much of their foreign policy.

As long as they continue on this course of double standards and hypocrisy they will breed anger and hatred throughout the world.

Moussaoui’s execution will not bring back those lives lost on 9/11. It may temporarily feel to relatives as if ‘closure’ has been found, but the aching hole of loss will not be filled by avenging it with yet another death.

This is a man who was prepared to take his own life for the purpose of taking others with him. Death will not punish him, it will snuff out the light and another martyr will be born. More fuel to the fire, more energy to spiral of hatred and revenge.

If the jury choose to sentence him to life imprisonment over the death penalty a great moral victory will have been achieved. But not only is it America, it is Virginia, there is little hope of this glimmer of encouragement finding the light of day.