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Has Saddam’s Execution Made Him a Martyr? January 8, 2007

Posted by Dan in Must Read, News, Politics.

The gruesomeness of the Saddam Hussein execution, as witnessed by the “Cell Phone Video” posted earlier at Webmerica, may have inadvertently turned Saddam into a martyr.

Many are disgusted by the manner in which he was executed. I myself feel it was too much like every other terrorist video from the region… not dignified and horrific to watch. The Constitutional term is: “Cruel and Unusual Punishment.” Now, protests in Italy over his death (and in fact, all capital punishment) have put the US Justice System on trial. Should we execute heinous criminals? This site says “no.” In the case of Saddam’s execution, it does not adequately punish him, nor does it deter others from following in his stead. In fact, it seems to rally others away from us, making us into the archetypical “bad guys.”

However, this is not a failure of our Justice System (or that of Iraq’s), but rather of its ability to adapt. Capital punishment was once heavily used throughout the world. But, as time has a way of evolving our opinions, it has become less acceptable. In America, we seem to have a problem recognizing failed policy and correcting it. Our pride has given way to arrogance. “The United States is the greatest country in the world,” or so we are all taught in school.

While I still believe this to be true, we have forgotten what it was that made us great. Freedom, Democracy, Justice, Possibility…. these were the hallmarks of our country. The world dreamed of living here. There were even those who believed our streets were literally “paved with gold.” But, little by little, we have made compromise after compromise and slowly eroded away those values that formed the very core of our society. In the name of National Security, we have given up Freedom. In the name of Politics, we have given up Justice. And in the name of Capitalism and the Free Market, we have made the American Dream almost unattainable. The bottom line is: If we don’t recognize that we have shortcomings, we will never succeed in fixing them! Our country will continue on its downward spiral of public opinion until we are no longer the great Superpower in the World. Adaptation is necessary, but it demands a return to our core values. Otherwise, we’ll go the route of Rome as we slowly crumble from the inside out.

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