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Brian

Aug 11, 2008, 6:31 AM

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La pena de muerte

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When things were looking particularly bleak, my Irish grandmother always used the expression "God help us and save us". Those words are ringing in my ears today. Those of us raised in the Catholic religion should be appalled by what follows here:

There is a huge disconnect between the Mexican and foreign communities with respect to feelings of personal security in the country. I have always felt that gringos particularly in places like SMA are shielded from the harsh realities because of the language barrier. What you don't know can't hurt you. San Miguel does not suffer from the kinds of daily crimes as its nearby neighbors making it easy to tell wary would be tourists that the region is safe. Why, though, do the Mexicans believe otherwise? The impetus for this post is an article in today's El Sol del Bajiio in which a representative of the Diocese of Celaya has made a clear statement that the death penalty should be considered now because of the increase in particularly heinous crimes in Mexico. Dios mio! What has the world come to? When a leader of the dominant religion in Mexico starts advocating that the end justifies the means? He rules out life imprisonment (recently advocated for kidnapping by President Calderon) because of the financial drain to society for locking someone up for life. Read it here and come to your own conclusion:

http://www.oem.com.mx/...io/notas/n808510.htm

--
Well my friends are gone and my hair is grey
I ache in the places where I used to play

Leonard Cohen
Tower of Song
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raferguson


Aug 11, 2008, 7:16 AM

Post #2 of 12 (8549 views)

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Re: [Brian] La pena de muerte - death penalty for kidnappers

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It is kind of amazing. In the US, the Catholic church is one of the big opponents of the death penalty.

The public revulsion about crime in Mexico is now so high that the return of the death penalty is under serious discussion, especially for kidnapping leading to death. But the chances of getting caught and convicted for kidnapping and most other crimes is very low, on the order of 1%, so the penalty is not an effective deterrent. Mexico needs a more professional and less corrupt police force, to catch more criminals. Police and ex police are widely believed to be involved in many kidnappings. Unfortunately, the three parties in congress seem to be in a kind of gridlock on many important issues, including crime. The executive branch makes recommendations to the legislature, and often nothing happens.

I am always surprised when Americans say they feel safer in Mexico than the USA. I don't think that the statistics support that idea; Mexico is especially high in violent crimes. The homicide rate in Mexico is double that in the US, and about ten times the rate in Canada or Europe.

Richard


http://www.fergusonsculpture.com


Rolly


Aug 11, 2008, 8:05 AM

Post #3 of 12 (8542 views)

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Re: [raferguson] La pena de muerte - death penalty for kidnappers

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Yes, the murder rate in México is quiet high, but it almost never involves an ex-pat or tourist, so these kinds of national statics can be very misleading when applied to a specific sub-group.

Read more about ex-pat and tourist deaths in México here: http://rollybrook.com/safety.htm

Rolly Pirate


Brian

Aug 11, 2008, 8:24 AM

Post #4 of 12 (8536 views)

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Re: [Rolly] La pena de muerte - death penalty for kidnappers

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Rolly

Do you know what percentage of the total population of Mexico is represented by tourists and ex-pats? That might tell you something about the "relatively" low number of total violent crimes committed against them. The point of this message is that the Mexican people, and now one of their religious leaders, are feeling so helpless against crime that they are on the verge of considering a punishment which has long been one of the shameful aspects of American culture.


Rolly


Aug 11, 2008, 8:46 AM

Post #5 of 12 (8529 views)

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Re: [Brian] La pena de muerte - death penalty for kidnappers

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I should have been more clear. I was responding to Richard's statememt: "I am always surprised when Americans say they feel safer in Mexico than the USA. I don't think that the statistics support that idea..."

Rolly Pirate


Brian

Aug 11, 2008, 9:21 AM

Post #6 of 12 (8521 views)

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Re: [Rolly] La pena de muerte - death penalty for kidnappers

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I should have been more clear. I was responding to Richard's statememt: "I am always surprised when Americans say they feel safer in Mexico than the USA. I don't think that the statistics support that idea..."


I suppose you are right. Maybe it would be more accurate to say that one is safe in Mexico as long as you aren't a Mexican. Rolly, I have been through what you are now experiencing in Lerdo. It was more than disconcerting to be living in TJ and being in the middle of warfare between the narcos and the feds. It brings to mind the lyrics of a James McMurtry song now popular:

"The wolves howl all night long
They won’t stop and they won’t go home
Beneath my window they run
Probably it’ll be alright
If I keep it all locked up tight And wait ‘til daylight comes"


(This post was edited by Brian on Aug 11, 2008, 10:37 AM)


Brian

Aug 11, 2008, 2:37 PM

Post #7 of 12 (8488 views)

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Re: [Brian] La pena de muerte - death penalty for kidnappers

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According to an article in today's paper:

"Eleven citizens' organizations have announced massive nationwide marches to condemn Mexico's crime wave. Organizers say the August 30 marches will represent a demand by the citizenry for effective government action against kidnappers and other violent criminals."


toddmc


Aug 11, 2008, 6:05 PM

Post #8 of 12 (8467 views)

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Re: [Brian] La pena de muerte - death penalty for kidnappers

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It was just announced that mexico will be establishing 5 anti-kidnapping centres.

Not much detail in the story, who knows if it will be effective?????
I guess time will tell if it is an just political grand standing or hopefully something more.


http://www.lasvegassun.com/...-kidnapping-centers/


Todd


Brian

Aug 12, 2008, 9:42 AM

Post #9 of 12 (8430 views)

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Re: [toddmc] La pena de muerte - death penalty for kidnappers

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I apologize for sounding so pessimistic but I think that this is just another example of the Mexican government "shuffling the deck chairs". It happens all the time when the government needs to look like it is doing something/anything. Wasn't it just less than two years ago when it established the AFI with primary responsibility to combat the kidnapping epidemic? They were supposed to be "untouchables". Well, several of its members have since been implicated in the very crimes they were supposed to defend against. They have been able to operate under the color of authority. Likewise, the government always comes up with a lower-level fall guy whenever the public demands justice for the all too frequent atrocity de jour.


moonfam5

Sep 2, 2008, 9:22 PM

Post #10 of 12 (8325 views)

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Re: [raferguson] La pena de muerte - death penalty for kidnappers

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Not only in the U.S. is the Catholic Church against the death penalty, it is straight from Rome. However, the church does allow for the death pealty in certain situations, i.e. the criminal is a direct continued threat to society. But with the way we have mexium security prisions (at least in the U.S.), there is not that reason for implementing such a punishment. Mexico would not be stemming any crime wave by implementing the death penalty, people here in the U.S. still kill, even thinking that they can still get away with it.
WinkThe more I learn, I less I know.


Brian

Sep 3, 2008, 6:21 AM

Post #11 of 12 (8308 views)

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Re: [moonfam5] La pena de muerte - death penalty for kidnappers

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However, the church does allow for the death pealty in certain situations, i.e. the criminal is a direct continued threat to society.


I have never heard of such a policy. There are no trials in the Catholic Church to determine one's danger to society. Perhaps you are referring to the Inquisition, one of the most shameful and inhumane times in the church's history?


moonfam5

Sep 3, 2008, 8:14 AM

Post #12 of 12 (8291 views)

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Re: [Brian] La pena de muerte - death penalty for kidnappers

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I assure you Brian, that I am not referring to the Inquisition, which was a shameful time in history. If you research it, the Inquisition was a way for governments, the spanish government in particular, to get rid of people they considered undesirable, i.e. the Moors, Jews, etc.
It was not right, and during that time of history, the Church and State were intertwined too much. Oh, by the way, the millions that were killed by the Inquisition is a highly inflated number. To listen to some people who are on a mission to discredit the Church, they go out of their way to embellish any statistic in order to give the Church a black eye. Check out the estimated population of Europe of the time, if there were millions killed, there would not have been enough people left to re-populate Europe.

I was referring to an encyclical by Pope John Paul II, where he says that the government has the right in certain cases to carry out the death penalty, but the way that the U.S. has their penal system, there is no reason to seek it. He was writing the u.S. in support of a stay of execution of a man in Louisiana.

Hope this clears up your questons.

Raymond
WinkThe more I learn, I less I know.
 
 
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