Friday, August 07, 2009

Train Robbers and Cranks

The radio this morning was full of the usual right-wing cranks phoning up and texting about the release of Ronald Biggs. How frustrating the day must be for these people if they can find nothing to vent their spleen on. Though of course, when you're a right-wing crank, everything is grist to your mill of hate. He should not come out, they say, despite the fact that he is dying of pneumonia. Make him stay in jail until he breathes his last! Then he will have paid his debt to society.

I can't claim even to have an opinion on Biggs himself. Perhaps it is just the mood I'm in this morning, but I couldn't care less what happens to him, though I do warm slightly to the spectacle of a judicial system exercising compassion to the dying. Biggs and his cohorts showed no compassion to the men on the train who were brutalised, they say; but does the State demonstrate the wickedness of their conduct by mirroring it? I'm not a right-wing crank, of course, so perhaps there's something in questions of law and justice I don't understand.

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