I was reading an article on potential expenditures and the problems Norway is having with sentencing of Anders Behring Breivik and I thought it would make an interesting blog post. It's entirely possible that some of things I discuss could be applied to smaller scale atrocities that we've experienced here in the U.S over the past couple months as well.
For those that aren't familiar with Anders Behring Breivik, a quick web search should fill you in on his crimes. Here is a Wikipedia link. (For those who aren't fans of Wikipedia, feel free to click on the referenced links at the bottom of the page to go directly to content on Breivik)
Here is the article that inspired this blog post. Link
Let me start with my thoughts,
1. They are going to spend how much on a separate mental health ward for him? (Oh wait, they've already spent how much on a potential ward for him?)
2. They spent how much on a special courtroom setup for him?
3. Norway is not the United States
4. Those Norwegians have some interesting views of how to treat criminals.
Those are the first 4 thoughts that scream out at me as I read the article. I'm stunned that a government would spend the kind of money it did on a potential ward for him before he is even found sane/insane and equally stunned that they built a special courtroom for him. Are Norwegian laws so strict that they couldn't find an alternative to spending money in order to provide the murderer with his fair trial?
Let's not forget the key point, there is no debate on whether this person killed all of these people, he's gleefully admitted it, and the country believes he did, so all of these procedures are simply to determine what should be done with him.
Maybe I should be impressed by Norway's government? 77 teenagers killed through ones man's actions and the government goes through this process to ensure his human rights are met. Amazing.
I realize that my view of Breivik is through the perspective of the writers I've chosen to read on him, but when I read about him or think about his actions, my blood boils. I can't fathom allowing this person to live or to give him any trial. Isee a man that is so broken, that nothing is ever going to fix him and his actions have been so deplorable that the world would be a better place without his existence.
The problem is I'm having a hard time justifying my thoughts on this, because I don't necessarily feel that way about some of the other killers in recent incidents in the U.S. although perhaps that is just due to the fact that their trials have not taken place yet.
I think that perhaps it's the difference between crime and war. Breivik declared war on Norway and his actions and comments offer evidence to this position.
If you made it through this mish mash of thoughts, I'd love to hear your opinions on this one.
5 months ago