By Alejandro A. Tagliavini *
It is a myth from Hollywood – not proven by history – that the Roman Colosseum was bloodied by Christian martyrs being eaten by lions, although it is true that it happened in many amphitheaters of the time such as in the circus of Nero, where it was martyred Saint Peter.
However, it is not myth that a year ago the Washington Post columnist, Jamal Khashoggi, entered the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul, cited by the authorities, and was dismembered. And the Saudi tyranny has set up a bloody circus to try to calm global public opinion: a court sentenced five people to death for the crime.
The agents involved worked directly for the Saudi crown prince, but neither he nor his close collaborators initially accused of being the intellectual authors were convicted. The CIA concluded that the crown prince must have authorized the operation.
Agnes Callamard of the UN described the trial as the «antithesis of justice.» Amnesty International said it was a «lime wash» and for the Financial Times editorial board «the verdicts issued … bear all the characteristics of a mock trial.»
But not only in this terrorist State do executions occur, also in countries like the US, and Japan where a Chinese has just been executed, convicted of the murder of a family in June 2003. Horrible crime. But I wonder what we shall say to the innocents who were previously executed in many countries. «Sorry, it was a miscalculation,» I don’t think this argument works, I don’t even think they can listen to it.
Just knowing with certainty that at some point the courts will «make mistakes» and execute an innocent, is enough to end the death penalty. Especially if we consider that State courts – in all countries – are «influenced» by those who finance them, the politicians who run the executive branch.
But even more. Where did the idea come from that, by force, with jail, criminals are re-educated? It is pure revenge. If the offender is not a normal person, he needs psychiatric treatment, not jail. And if he is a sane person, we must study why these crimes occur and solve that.
For example, today most of the crimes are related to drug trafficking, so, after lifting the prohibition that weighs on some harmful drugs, these crimes would disappear. Believing that the solution is to imprison narcos is not serious, because they will be replaced by others and the crime will continue as long as the prohibition continues.
Germany released «by mercy» 1,200 prisoners at Christmas, excluding those convicted of serious crimes and, in fact, they only anticipated their departure a few weeks. Since the beginning of this custom, only the case of a woman who, after being released, returned to prison for a robbery is known.
“Christmas reminds us that God continues to love every man, even the worst. To me, to you, to each one of us, He tells us today: ‘I love you and I will always love you, you are beautiful in my eyes,’” said Pope Francis. Too strong! «The worst» includes rapists, children shatters, Stalin and Hitler … God loves them, and we imprison them … Anyway, as humans mature, will understand that freedom is a gift from God and that a man without it can only become a less normal person, never more sociable.
* Member of the Advisory Board of the Center on Global Prosperity, of Oakland, California