Friday, March 13, 2009


Lets say one day, I grab a young man off the streets, take him home and lock him in my basement. This young man isn't very nice and has been hanging out with the wrong crowd, so he isn't very well liked.

Lets say that I keep him locked up in a 6' x 6' room in my basement, with a metal cot and an open toilet. I wake him at the same time everyday, tell him when he can sleep, when he can eat, when he can talk.

Lets say further, that on an unpredictable yet regular basis, I steal what little possession I allow him to keep, I beat him, I feed him second rate food and occasionally rape him.

Lets say further that I allow my friends to come over and rape him when they feel like it too - in exchange for cigarettes, booze or food.

Lets say that I do this for 10 years or so, every day, before he finally escapes.

What would you think of me?

More importantly, what would you think of what happened to this young man. Is his treatment horrible? Evil? Will he be remotely normal after he escapes?

Would you say he had it easy?

Of course not.

I'm curious then why so many people seem to think doing this exact thing to Momin Khawaja is "letting him off easy". Check out the comments over at CBC.

I make no apologies for Khawaja, nor do I remotely support what he did or his causes. In reality, he has already been in prison for 5 years and was sentenced to an additional 10 1/2 years for his actions. That means his sentence is 15 1/2 years for his crimes and he will not be eligible for parole for another 5 years, until he has served 10 years. That doesn't mean he'll get it, it means simply he'll be allowed to ask, to simply make the request.

For a guy who never actually harmed another individual or caused any damage, that seems like a pretty stiff and fair sentence.

And yet everywhere you turn, you see so-called "law and order" conservative blowhards claiming that the sentence is "too light" or demonstrates that our legal system is too lenient.


Those commenters at CBC and at the Blogging Tories are the same people that wouldn't last 45 minutes in a stuck elevator, yet claim 15 1/2 years in a prison is "too light". These are the same people that wouldn't last 10 days inside the dark pits of anal rape we call Milhaven or Kingston, yet seem to think 10 years in such a place is "getting off with a slap on the wrist".

Perhaps Khawaja should have gotten more - I don't know, because like right-wing howler monkeys, I haven't read the actual decision yet. But that doesn't mean 10+ years in one of our federal pens isn't punishment. It is. It is 10 years of horror and anyone who thinks differently is an utter and complete, ignorant fool whose mean-spirited and uninformed opinions should be utterly ignored or viciously ridiculed.

Khawaja got what he deserved and trust me, he'll pay for his crimes, whether the vengeful right thinks he will or not.

Just because the bigots and authoritarians could exact their sadistic revenge, doesn't mean justice hasn't been served. It has.

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