I used to think that movies vividly illustrating savage vengeance – such as hacking a genocidal bounty hunter‘s thumbs off; or staking a wicked desperado naked to the desert floor with molasses spread over his genitals; or nail-gunning the grinning despicable to the cabin door after removing his biggest organ (that is his skin…for you organically challenged) — were particularly haunting and horrific punishments.
Apparently I must have a limited imagination. Especially when it comes to penalizing evil.
For I am absolutely astounded. I didn’t realize that folks could be so brilliant. And I mean enterprising! Your reprisals are without constraints. And here I thought that the difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limitations. And stupidity was the limitless ways my exes spent my credit cards.
Ever since I proposed — in last week’s essay — eternal, 24/7 slavery and servitude to the wounded and amputated as a punishment for that surviving Boston Marathon bomber, you folks have run absolutely amuck, volunteering profoundly wicked versions of fitting retributions.
I have been inundated by your boundless mental contempt and visceral hatred on how this 19 year-old-college-partying, dissolute demon seed should be condemned. And I must confess I don’t know what is more frightening: Evil…or, your menacing thoughts on how to punish Diablo’s acolytes.
I am absolutely cowed. And hey folks, do I need to remind you that the Inquisition is no longer hiring.
But of course…not!
All I can say is that we are certainly gluttons for punishment. At least doing unto such vile, diabolical others what you would do-do-do — not only if you were King, but if you had 20 minutes alone with this once angelic-looking Chechen. And some of you – Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Buddhist or other — didn’t seem to mind whether you would be exonerated or not.
And, at the same time, the egregious acts you would perform on his hijab headed mother — Zubeidat Tsarnaeva!!!
Oy-vey iz mir! As if she maimed her sons with great hatred at the start. You know, from her womb came their fanatic’s heart.
From what you all proposed merely stoning the raucous spewing Mama, who remains potently in denial of her sons’ misdeeds, would seem like little more than pelting their Svengali with a philosophy of hard knocks. Compared to your inveighing – including needle nose pliers and gunpowder poured down her various apertures – stoning would seem like little more than tossing underhand softballs to knock down those fuzzy kewpie dolls in a carnival game.
Good gooollleee!!! You all sure sound like a bunch good ol’ boys, getting tuned for a hang-tie party — overdosing on bawdy booze, bacon barbeque and bad bible banalities.
It seems as if nothing brings people together more than mutual hatred. Salivating about how you is gonna hang, castrate and debone your latest least-favorite ethnic. By comparison, the heinous sexual perversions of Marquis de Sade seem so ingénue. In fact, your ferocious passion feels so devout that if you would take away hatred from some people, all you have left is men – and women — without faith.
Hatred is indeed a much underestimated passion. It’s as blind as love. And a much stronger – if not far easier – vice.
Never forget that every vice was once a virtue and may become respectable again, just as hatred becomes respectable in wartime – even though it may masquerade under the guise of patriotism.
Meanwhile, I must have missed something in Sunday school. I thought that it was only in hell that there is no other punishment than to begin over and over again the tasks left unfinished in our lifetime.
Admittedly, as I stated forthrightly last week I want Dzhokhar snapped, crackled and popped in a megawatt bug zapper. But the downside is he would be just as dead as his older brother Tamerlan, who was killed in a police shoot out.
And the real dilemma to me, at least, is that the dead don’t suffer. Only the living do. Especially the wounded, amputated and walking dead created by the brothers’ anathema.
In other words: Death is less bitter punishment than death’s delay. Just read Dovstoyevsky.
Which is why a punishment suggested by a Muslim West African friend seems to serve a better means to a justifiable end. After what may feel like an endless life of servitude, as I already put forward, perhaps even G-d would relent. I mean I don’t believe that anything can hold a grudge forever – especially condemning its creation to eternal punishment. Nobody can hold a grudge that long. Not even G-d.
So Dzhokha should eventually be given a choice. Freely. A sort of reprieve. In the privacy of his cell he should be given an empty gun. If for nothing else than to create the desire, if not the possibility of a self-perpetuated escape.
Then, after a miserable period of mental destitution he will be given one bullet. Finally, the choice is his: To be or not to be.
I mean, that is a divine punishment to me. Hope given…and withdrawn. Just like the ancient g-ds thought sentencing Sisyphus to that most dreadful punishment of futile and hopeless labor.
Another numbing suggestion that was offered amounted to crucifying the monster of the marathon. Literally nailing him up so that he dies agonizingly and tortuously. Not to mention slowly… in pieces. Crows pecking away his eyes. Buzzards ripping at his entrails. His cries shattering the still midnight air, to serve as warning to others for such abominations.
Admittedly, all this is a glorious house of pain and retribution. It totally engages me. But, once again, I fret about what it communicates to the world. America was once, and perhaps still is, somewhat renown — the land of ideals; where things were accomplished bigger, better and cheaper. A righteous land of equality, fairness, justice and tolerance. Not to mention an overriding Judaeo-Christian nod to forgiveness.
Some of the horrid suggestions for punishment are simply fueled by our frustrations, perceived helplessness, as well as our own xenophobic hatreds—especially for the 99 percent Muslims that didn’t have anything to do with 911 or the Boston Marathon massacre. Just as they didn’t have anything to do with Oklahoma City, or Aurora, Colorado, or Newtown, Massachusetts…
Indeed, we often are our own worst enemy.
It is hard to imagine how some folks conjured such dastardly punishments. No wonder evil seems to abound. This includes running the entire Boston Marathon with shoes stuffed with ball bearings and other bits of nails and glass used in the bombs. All to a foretold fatal ending of running through a final gauntlet.
I guess passionate hatred does give meaning and purpose to an empty life.
In some respects the punishments are as hateful as the crime itself. Which may be apropos, if that seems feasible. Yet while merely sating our barbaric blood lust, such hateful punishments do appear a tad askew in today’s milieu of authoritarian political correctness.
Then again, what I’ve always found detestable about political correctness is that it doesn’t legislate tolerance, it merely organizes our hatreds. And we seem to have so many. Especially when a fragile nerve is snapped.
Then, our hatred appears as inveterate anger.
But meanwhile fierce punishment is absolutely the call of the land. And it is necessary. In view of the reprehensible crime it may seem a tad lame, but it must come. For punishment, indeed, is justice for the unjust. And the Boston Marathon bombing was a beastly injustice.
Overall, however, if there is a problem with punishment it is that while it may make most of us obey the law and order we are given, at best it will only teach an obedience to authority — And not a self-control which enhances our self-respect. In other words, if most people are good only because we fear punishment, and hope for reward, then we are nothing but a bunch of sorry SOBs indeed.
When all is said and done it comes down to this: Our civilization is built on a number of ultimate principles… respect for human life, the punishment of crimes against property and persons, the equality of all good citizens before the law… or, in a word justice.
That is, even if today’s shabby courtrooms — especially in my hometown of Philadelphia – often make us feel that someone kidnapped justice and hid it in the law. Nonetheless justice must not only be done, it must manifest and undoubtedly be seen to be done.
And dats yDrewIS on dis penal colony…