What kind of example do nations set for their citizens?

Updated: Jun 19, 2020

Torture and public de-capitations


I read this week of the substantial number of gruesome and cruel public executions held in The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia so far this year. Some of the executed were underage when convicted and what is worse, some of the convictions, resulting in public execution are utterly trivial.

I should say right away that I am vehemently opposed to the death penalty in all its forms. It is, in my opinion, not only self-defeating as a punishment, but it stains the entire human race, not just the perpetrating country.

I believe our whole penal system is backward - but that is a different subject for another time.

What grates, is the knowledge that so many governments, including my own, tacitly support these brutal regimes. Because they have oil and we want to sell our fighter jets and tanks and get their money. So we keep quiet and turn a blind eye to these barbaric rituals they carry out.

I am talking about all the country's that carry out the death penalty, including the USA. It is just plain wrong and anti civilisation. I am proud that the UK abolished capital punishment. We should make the argument and work hard to encourage others to do the same.

When a nation decides the premeditated, cold-blooded ending of another's life, it seems like a crime against humanity itself - it is a stain on humankind.

Saudi Arabia is the most beautiful country, but some of its laws appear primitive and backward. Its people should be encouraged to move their behavioural laws forward into creating a more caring and compassionate society. It seems hypocritical and unacceptable in today's age to still be torturing ones own and other nations citizens and then executing them In public. All this when its leader, Mohammid Bin Salmon, the Crown Prince, is most likely guilty of shocking and barbarically heinous crimes. Crimes such as those perpetrated against the New York Times columnist, Jamal Khashoggi, who was lured into the Saudi embassy in Istambul and then cold-bloodedly murdered, butchered into pieces and removed in bags and disposed of. Yet Mohammid bin Salmon is still lauded and welcomed on the world stage.

He, of course, is by no means the only leader who commits such crimes. I suppose this will be called politics and diplomacy - if so, it is the kind of politics and diplomacy that gives the human race a bad name.

We are surely better than this.

The unrealistic soap-opera continues


The saga of Brexit continues, almost like a soap opera. Is it all about to end in tears for the "Remainer's" or are we in for an extension - again? As it all plays out, sometimes in front of the cameras, sometimes behind closed doors, we see humans, occasionally at their best but mostly at their worst.  As we get fed the lines from the opposing positions, I just can't shake the feeling of shame and embarrassment at being associated with this debacle, just by my nationality.

Of course, people are frustrated, who wouldn't be. But the Luxemburg Prime Minister, Xavier Bettel, did himself and the process no favours by adopting such a screeching and grandstanding position. I expect he is feeling somewhat embarrassed and ashamed of himself this morning. I hope he is - he should.

We should all be embarrassed at our national leaders, bickering like spoilt children. There are millions of people in the world who are starving or suffering from conflict or injuries, and the best we in the UK can do is spend three indolent years navel-gazing.

Do we blame ourselves or our politicians? Perhaps the best way is to hold a second referendum which we can, with much more certainty, act on immediately.  We should get this ridiculous process finished once and for all. It is destroying and ripping apart our society. We have still not understood the damage this has done. Whatever happens, it will take years if not decades to recover from this self-destroying, self-inflicted mess.

While the Brits are wholly culpable, the E.U. is not without blame here. We need to move on ASAP. There are more important things that need our attention.

Rick - Suffolk - UK - 17th November - 2019


rick@notesfromengland

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