I have been extremely busy the past week as I have been working. And I have missed out on many many important issues to blog about. But I’m really glad that my blogger friends have been really busy, well, blogging. So, here are the links of their posts and other interesting links:
- Kristen Han is pissed with Singapore’s Judicial system
- Dr Goh Keng Swee, one of the founders of the PAP, has gone home to be with the Lord.
- Callan Tham warns Singapore’s government not to treat bloggers like ‘chopped liver’
- Singapore’s theatre community lambasts the National Arts Council
- Texas schools board rewrites US history
- Singapore is grabbing Cambodia by its neck for sand
- Pinkdot 201o was held over the weekend. Mohd Hisham blogs about the event.
- Alex Au is ‘in the sea of red‘. Literally.
Pardon me for my lack of of updates. Will be back after the 6th of June.
Tan Chin Aik’s rebuttal to Law Minister K. Shanmugam that the Government should go after drug barons instead of punishing at times clueless drug traffickers:
While the death penalty is applied rightly to crimes such as murder and kidnapping, it is applied with strict liability on drug trafficking, and often, against drug addicts who are themselves victims of the drug barons.
It is certainly difficult to get the drug barons. But they are also the ones breathing easier when drug traffickers get the death sentence as ‘their mouths are sealed’ upon their execution.
While I do not argue against the tough stance of a death sentence, to have it as a mandatory sentence against a strict liability offence can be most unwise.
Some of the offenders’ culpabilities may not be such as to deserve a death penalty, and some of the less culpable ones deserve to have their lives spared and be rehabilitated. They could even possibly rat on the drug lords.
Now, if only K. Shanmugam can see this issue the way Mr Tan sees it.
Singapore’s Law Minister K Shanmugam defended the mandatory death penalty in an article in TODAY:
People assume you can have this safety and security without this framework of the law; that you can change it, and yet your safety and security will not be affected,” he said. “But there are always trade-offs. The difficulty the Government has sometimes in explaining this is that the trade-offs are not apparent. The damage to a large number of others is not obvious.
“You save one life here, but 10 other lives will be gone. What will your choice be?
If a drug mule escapes the death penalty. drug barons will think the signal is that young and vulnerable traffickers will be spared and can be used as drug mules, argued Mr Shanmugam.
“Then you’ll get 10 more. There’ll be an unstoppable stream of such people coming through as long as we say we won’t enforce our law
I feel he’s missing the point here. He’s not nipping the problem in the bud by going after the drug mules who sometimes have no idea what they are doing. He should be going after the drug barons instead.
If he say that there are trade offs, which also means that he’s willing to sacrifice the drug mules ‘for the greater good’, then my question is, by doing that, will the drugs stop coming?
This is a very weak and heartless argument for keeping the death penalty.
Capital punishment is defined as ‘the execution of a person by the legal system as a punishment for an offense’. Capital crimes include Firearm, Murder and Drug Trafficking. But according to ThinkCentre, most of the capital punishments that Singapore has handed out are drug related offences. But as we all know, the drugs are still being handed out and the cases of drug abuse among the young are rising at an alarming rate. So, is the death penalty the way forward? Is it still relevant?
I agree with what he said, to a certain extent. I agree that murderers and criminals who go around shooting at people should be put to death. But drug traffickers? Yes, they ruin lives by selling drugs. But then again, if there’s no demand, will there be supply? What I’m saying is, it takes two hands to clap. I will talk about that again later. Let’s take a look at the general public who are against and those who are in favour of capital punishment.
The year: 2005: In the aftermath of the execution of convicted Australian drug-runner Van Nguyen, who was arrested at Changi airport three years ago while in transit from Cambodia to Australia with 400 grams of heroin in his possession three years earlier, Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, defended Singapore’s decision to hang Van Nguyen. He said: ‘We think that drug trafficking is a crime that deserves the death penalty. The evil inflicted on thousands of people with drug trafficking demands that we must tackle the source by punishing the traffickers rather than trying to pick up the pieces afterwards,” he said.
Demand and supply. If there’s no demand for drugs, would there be a supply for drugs? My point is, there’s no use executing the trafficker and not finding out the reason for the demand. Why does this teenager need drugs? Why does he/she still do drugs even when they know the consequences?
Abolish the death penalty for drug trafficking. It is not working. Killing them doesn’t mean the end of the drugs issue. People are still repeating the same mistake. I say, educate them in prison and then release them into the society to educate soon-to-be drug abusers.
Whether we care to admit it or not, drug abuse is here to stay. Taking another human life with the knowledge that drugs is still flowing in the society out there is plain murder. Education is the way forward. But then again, the jury is still out on this issue.