Travelogue

Contemporania

In the interests of putting this diary in a temporal context, I’ll drop a few notes here:

Please feel free to add a comment with anything you think defines the moment.


  1. They’re talking a lot about Michael in the UK too. Although in Europe we have sensibly rid ourselves of the death penalty, nonetheless, we have erred too far in favour of the perpetrator to the detriment of the victim, who seems to be forgotten in our zest to protect the victimiser! This week in the UK a paedophile was compensated for the anguish he suffered when waiting to come to trial, even though he was found guilty. Now, please tell me the sense in that. The victims had waited 25 years to have their justice.

    Mum
    3 March 2005

  2. I don’t know of the particular case you mention but we can discuss the situation in a general manner:

    When someone has been up in court you should take their offence and their situation while on trial entirely separately. Ignore that they are a criminal and think solely of what they suffered: if they suffered something that you would not wish to suffer, nor see your friends and family suffer, then that person should not suffer it either. Confucius said: ‘Do not to others what you would not wish upon yourself’; when taking the decision to compensate someone in this way a judge (and by implication society) is saying we will not allow anyone to suffer this, that laws are there to protect everyone and not just those arbitrarily decided to fall under its protection.

    If a judge doesn’t take such a decision then you enter a realm where the law that the person broke applies, but the one outlawing suffering doesn’t.

    Matt
    4 March 2005

  3. I understand your principle but can’t agree in practice simply because when such a crime as paedophilia is committed I think the perpetrator forfeits rights to compensation of any sort.

    Mum
    5 March 2005

  4. Then in essence you’re accepting that laws apply to some people at certain times, but not to others at the same or different times. Who decides which laws apply to whom, and when they apply? And would you be happy if someone decided that certain laws no longer protect you?

    Matt
    5 March 2005

  5. The rights apply to having a fair trial but I don’t believe rights apply beyond that. I wouldn’t expect to have a right to compensation for anxiety experienced waiting for trial if I was guilty.

    Mum
    19 March 2005

  6. I think we’ve taken this as far as it’s going to go. I’ve written down my thoughts and you yours. Plus I don’t want to get drawn in to the details of the case as I know nothing about it. Let’s just close with this summary: I’m right and you’re wrong!

    Matt
    30 March 2005