where the writers are
Mourning the Gladiators

Why now that the population is higher than ever are we so opposed to death? It’s been a sport, a release, a justice years before it was something that made us sick and wanting to raise our voices in outrage.

Is the death penalty really an effective deterrent? Murder still happens, those committing it probably having already come to terms with the possibility of being caught. I doubt there is a person in this world who won’t kill simply because it’s against the law.

We can do it in war, but only under the same circumstances, and often under more suffocating restrictions, as self-defense. Killing in self defense is not murder, it is the only remains of vigilante justice.

War has become much more about winning hearts and minds than mass destruction, at least for the US. There are Rules of Engagement, which are currently very limiting. Fire can be returned only under three conditions; positive identification, hostile intent, and hostile act. Beneath those headings are even more restrictions.

 Most will say they’d rather be judged by twelve than carried by six. That is until they are being stared down by high-ranking officers trying desperately to explain why they shot up a vehicle before it was within 100meters. The minimum safe distance from a Vehicle Bourne Improvised Explosive Device is 2000meters. Still you will be question for opening fire on anything or anyone, even if your brothers-in-arms might’ve died had you not intervened.

Why? Because of an increasingly squeamish population wanting to save the people who would kill their families without flinching. Cries for bringing the troupes home will only cause more to be sent. The job is slow because of the new restrictions on war; a previously brutal institution that modern political officials are trying to make civilized.

War is barbaric, but it’s supposed to be.

I’m getting off my soap-box now. Back to the death penalty. It has made no difference, and in some cases mistakes have been made sentencing people to death. Still, what to do with killers who will kill again? We can’t use Australia anymore. You can’t reform psychopaths or pedophiles anymore than you can stop them forever.

The Death Penalty, and war too, are a seventy percent solution. You can liken them to cold medicine, treating the symptoms instead of the root problem. Psychologists can tell you the makings of a murderer, or criminal sociopath, or child molester. The formula for war brewing varies, different strokes for different folks and I really can’t talk on why. I won’t discuss sides of the war, whether it’s right or wrong. It’s happening, and it’s not going to stop happening until it’s over.

Deal with it, move on.

If you take life day by day, not thinking about yesterday or tomorrow, it’s much easier to accept reality.