I Don’t Think Our President Should Murder People
The Welikada prison is weirdly beautiful. It’s a big colonial era space with colonial era equipment. Giant rice cookers where the prisoners make meals, giant hacksaws and wood-working machinery where they were making furniture. I asked someone holding a giant blade what he was in for and he said murder. OK.
I was not in prison, I was just visiting, hence the comments about beauty, because I could leave. The cells were not so nice, and they were crowded, and the main issue is that you’re stuck there. If you wander further back there are some fair Pakistani guys, who were sitting around a table. I asked them what they were in for. They said drugs. That’s who the President wants to murder.
I think this is bad. For one thing I used to like drugs, until I grew up. Lots of drugs are fun and the idea that they deserve jail always felt wrong to me. Some drugs are pretty unequivocally bad, like heroin, which is the main problem here. Even with those, however, I still think people should be helped — with clean needles, safe spaces, methadone, rehab — a realistic path towards recovery. I think it’s a social and medical issue requiring understanding and help, not punishment. That is, if you want to actually reduce the problem.
If you want to look like you’re reducing the problem, punishment and killing people is the way to go. The western world has been trying this for decades, and it truly, empirically hasn’t worked.
Hence it is curious that our criminally negligent President has turned his attention to this. Maithripala desperately wants to execute some drug dealers. He’s willing to go through a lot of trouble and disapproval to do this. He really wants to kill.
It’s not even that there’s a huge popular outcry over drug dealers selling drugs in prison. It’s just that he met a popular murderer in the Philippines and perhaps thought this a nice change of subject. For the murders that he didn’t protect us from on April 21st.
I won’t get too much into the general arguments against the death penalty. The truth is that killing is wrong and the state is stupid. There’s obviously more debate about it, but it’s really that simple. What I want to talk about is why here, and why now?
As mentioned, there is no high profile murder, rape or assassination that has the public crying for blood. Drugs do cause problems, but it hasn’t become an epidemic. People selling drugs from prison is not even a known issue among most people. It also seems to have more readily available solutions since the people are, you know, in jail already.
The only explanation I have, which you should not discount, is that our President is dumb and wants a distraction. A distraction from the Easter Attacks, wherein he failed to act on clear warnings with the result that hundreds died. An act that he should be impeached for (among other acts) and for which he is currently being pilloried in committee.
Unlike preventing deaths, causing death is something he can control in advance since the people are just sitting in captivity. So I guess he’s doing that. Honestly, what an asshole.
The question isn’t even what you think of the death penalty in historical or ethical terms, HimalMag has an excellent rundown on the former. The question is whether this failed President, who has betrayed every mandate and broken our most cardinal laws, whether this guy should be executing people.
No. Fuck no. Fuck him. We cannot have elections soon enough to replace this dangerous idiot and hopefully get rid of the position entirely. In the meantime, he should not be allowed to remove human beings from the earth. He should not be empowered to murder people. The question at hand isn’t about the death penalty because the public isn’t asking for it. One guy, who happens to be our President, wants to kill people. That’s the only person driving this. And that’s just murder.