I watched with mounting horror the Carte Blanche special last night on the Brett Goldin and Richard Bloom murders in April 2006, and was deeply saddened by the murder statistics that were presented.
If one looks at any country that displays some abnormal statistic, either good or bad, one can normally trace the cause to an action (or lack of action) by the Government of that country. In South Africa, our abnormally high HIV/AIDS infection rate could be directly attributed by the denialist attitude of our incompetent Health Minister <spit> and in fact our President. It was only after the most intense pressure by the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) and the International community that the government grudgingly started supplying ARV’s.
Apartheid, with all it’s excesses and gross violation of human rights, was defeated not by military victory, but by pressure, from both inside and outside the country. What is it with South Africa? Why do we need the most extreme pressure to make the simplest of decisions?
If you look at Zimbabwe, inflation of 7000% (25000% unofficially) doesn’t just happen, it has a cause, and the cause is the disastrous economic and political policies of the ruling party.
South Africa’s ranking as the murder and rape (and God knows what else) capital of the World DOESN’T JUST HAPPEN. We as a country are no more or less violent than any other country. And please, please stop blaming Apartheid. We find ourselves in this position because the government has NOT ACTED. The government, as with the HIV/AIDS issue, is in denial. And what will make this change?
PRESSURE. It’s the South African way. Nothing gets done here unless the government is dragged kicking and screaming to the decision.
Our First World Constitution is worth nothing when it is trampled daily underfoot by animals (no, much worse than animals). A murderer or rapist who does not value a human life, should in turn not have his life protected by our constitution.
If the ordinary ANC election fodder were given the choice, free of Party dictation, to re-introduce the death penalty in this country, they would do it in a flash. But will this happen? No.
Let us all join hands, regardless of party affiliation, race and religion and pressure the government to amend the constitution and re-introduce the death penalty for murder with aggravating circumstances. Let every death sentence be reviewed by the Constitutional Court, and let it be carried out swiftly and humanly by lethal injection. When our murder rate is back within International norms, let us re-address this issue.
BRING BACK THE DEATH PENALTY, it is currently our only hope.