Ministers angry at European whole-life tariffs ruling

Do murderers have human rights or have those been forfeited as a result of their crime?

Penitence

Murder. All questions, no answers.
What is a whole-life tariff?  When does life mean life?
When does a killer forego all rights?
Is there room for regret, remorse, atonement
or is it the stone-cold judgment that life means life?
Can a murderer change?
Can the pain that he’s brought be forgotten, forgiven?
Ever?  Sometimes?  Never?

Is the style of murder the determining factor?  Is that when life means life?
Is a brutal savage attack worse than a single shot through the head?
Does one show ‘passions’ unleashed, lack of control
whilst the other instead a rational act, cold, calculating, in total control.
Is either killer more or less likely to murder again?

Is it who is killed that matters?  Is that when life means life?
Is it worse taking the life of someone who’s weak,
a child, an elderly woman, an elderly man, or someone who’s terminally ill?
Is the ‘man in the street’ victim  somehow worth less?
What if you killed Hitler, Gadaffi, Idi Amin, Bin Laden or Saddam Hussein,
someone the world has called bad?
Can that somehow be better, shadowed with ‘good intent’?
Do two wrongs make a right?

Is it how many are killed that counts?  Is that when life means life?
Is one murder just an aberrant act?
Would two or more show propensity, cold-blooded intent,
what’s meant by a deep-down desire to kill?
And what if you kill by decree?
What if false evidence of WMD sends the country to war?
What if hundreds of thousands of civilians die?
Is that a mass murderer’s act?
I suppose, in fact, it depends on whether you win.

So the type of death, who is killed, the number who die
and of course intent, the reason why a murderer kills,
do they all determine a whole-life tariff, when life means life
or should we abide by a moral code of human rights?

9th July 2013

Notes:  “Ministers angry at European whole-life tariffs ruling.”  Ministers have criticised a ruling by the European Court of Human Rights that whole-life tariffs breach a prisoners’ human rights.  In a case brought by murderer Jeremy Bamber and two other killers, judges said such sentences had to be reviewed at some point.  To never have any possibility of parole was inhuman or degrading, they said.  The prime minister said he “profoundly disagrees”.  Justice Secretary Chris Grayling said the human rights convention’s authors would be “turning in their graves”.

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