Posts Tagged ‘injustice’

There’s an interesting article in the Guardian today about a report which demonstrates a 17 year gap in the ‘disability-free life expectancy’ of the withs and withouts in the UK. That’s an enormous gap!

This quote caught my eye:

The report says the conditions in which people are born, live, work and age, shape their health; what is needed is a reduction in the iniquities in power and money that benefit the rich from birth.
[emphasis added]

Yes, I would agree that disparities in power and money are iniquitous. I don’t think it’s quite what they meant to say, but it seems appropriate!


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I am against the death penalty. In all circumstances.

Ohio is planning to execute Kenneth Biros by way of an experimental lethal injection.

Currently, where a US state executes a person by lethal injection, three drugs are given. This is supposed to be a humane and painless way to die. Research has been done that suggests that it is not. (The Guardian article also recounts the attempted execution of Romell Broom, which sounds psychologically traumatising.) Death row itself is an additional form of psychological punishment.

I’m against the death penalty in all circumstances. If it’s going to be carried out anyway (and it will be, for some time to come, unfortunately), I’d like to know that it’s being done in as painless a way as possible. So in that sense, a recognition that the current three-injection procedure is or may be broken is good. (Personally, I’d like to hope that such recognition helps lead towards abolition.)

However, funnily enough, I’m also against experimenting on the people you’re trying to put to death as you put them to death. It seems to me that that can only add to the punishment.


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I was watching the ABC news on TV, and saw the TV version of this story.

In essence: NSW is trying to crack down on graffiti. One of the “initiatives” from the clever clogs in charge of this banana State is to impose higher penalties. For example, a quote from the TV version was something like: “kids as young as 13 will face up to 6 months’ imprisonment for carrying a spray can without a legitimate excuse.”


The TV version also had NSW Attorney-General John Hatzistergos saying something like “since people aren’t being deterred by current penalties, we’re going to raise the penalties”.


The stupidity of this knee-jerk statement is obvious: if people aren’t deterred by the penalties, it’s often because they’re simply not deterred by penalties full stop, not because the penalties aren’t fucking harsh enough. In other words, imprisonment is not a specific deterrent. Even The Australian gets that!

It’s a bad idea to imprison kids. Really, really fucking bad. We should only do it where it’s absolutely necessary.

And where a kid has been carrying a spray can (or even spraying a bit of graffiti, and I find that as annoying and sometimes distressing as many others do), it’s not precisely necessary.

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The Land and Environment Court has dismissed the appeal by the Quranic Society against a decision by Camden Municipal Council not to allow a Muslim school in the area.

I haven’t read the decision yet – if I get the chance to do so next week, I may post about it – but the ABC article linked above gives the court’s reason for dismissing the appeal as being that the school “was not suitable for the rural nature of the land.”

I’ve written about this school before, and again, I’m skeptical about the Court’s reasoning – but I’ll wait until I get the chance to read the judgment before I say too much about that.

What I want to draw attention to, though, is comments like this (from the ABC article):

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You’ll probably see some of the themes of my posts during this week, Reconciliation Week, being revisited in my posts for NAIDOC Week in a month or so. That’s because, as I mentioned in my previous post, Reconciliation Week sort of snuck up on me, and that means I don’t have a great deal of time to research these posts as much as I might like. Instead, they basically consist of thoughts which have been bouncing around in my head a bit.

One of these relates to the privilege of education. I’ve touched on this idea a bit before, but I think it’s important enough to come back to (again and again and again, if necessary).

Perhaps it’s the bias of my upbringing, but I think education is important. I think access to education is important.

In Australia, we discriminate tremendously against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with respect to education and access to education.


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Fire Fly has more detail.

Basically: Indigenous Affairs Minister, Jenny Macklin, has announced that there will be a compulsory acquisition of Alice Springs town camps.

She has wonderful [that’s sarcasm] timing, today being the start of National Reconcilation Week and all.

Fire Fly has a good roundup of information, including the text of a statement put together by the group Stop The Intervention, which is to be presented to Jenny Macklin this Friday 29 May.

Email your support (individual or organisation) by tomorrow (Thursday 28 May).

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Today is Close the Gap day.

What gap? The 17 year gap in average life expectancy between indigenous and non-indigenous Australians.

That’s 17 years.

Amnesty has a petition.

At the time of writing, there were only about 550 signatures. That’s horrendously low. I encourage you to go and add yours.

(I found out about this from hexy.)

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Not that that’s news, particularly.

Anyway, if this is true, it’s pretty awful: Karzai has reportedly signed a law that rolls back women’s rights.

Apparently, the law has not yet been published, but it is understood to contain (among other things) provisions that legalise rape within marriage and provisions that prevent women from leaving their home without their husband’s permission. One female MP, Senator Humaira Namati,

said the law was “worse than during the Taliban”. “Anyone who spoke out was accused of being against Islam,” she said.

(From the context, I take it she means that anyone who spoke out during the debates.)


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