Thursday, May 04, 2006

Justice Is Served

From the BBC: Defiant Moussaoui gets life term

Judging by Moussaoui's reaction to his sentence, it didn't go the way he would have liked. Let me explain.

For a man who didn't want to die, Moussaoui had a funny way of showing it. He has done, and still is doing, everything he can to encourage us to want him dead. Make no mistake, kiddies. This man wants to die, and punishment for a crime should consist of the last thing on earth that you would want to happen.

Moussaoui, crude as he is, does not strike me as someone who is a stupid man. Had he been executed by our government, he would have been a martyr and a hero to those who have declared a jihad against the U.S. It would have further encouraged our enemies. Don't think for one second that Moussaoui didn't realize this.

Don't think for one second that he also didn't realize that drawing out the length of this trial was only focusing our attention toward the past instead of more important matters, like preventing future attacks. Had he been handed a death sentance, there would have been an immediate appeal, which would have drawn out this trial further.

Lastly, Moussaoui knew that had we killed him, it would have been used by our enemies to paint us as a barbaric nation. We kill. We are unforgiving. By opting to instead give him a life sentence, we have shown our enemies that we are bigger than they are. We have mercy. We have restraint. We are not the bloodthirsty wolves that they'd like to paint us as.

In granting Moussaoui his life, we've crippled his cause, even if it was just a little bit.

I'm not a fan of the death penalty. I'm actually against it. How liberal of me, I guess. But my stance on this particular case has nothing to do with my views on the death penalty. For Moussaoui, life is a fate worse than death, and for someone who had a small part in the death of thousands, it was deserved.

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