Pages

Monday, June 29, 2009

Nature of Crime

Bernie Madoff got 150 years. He's 71 now and considering the average age of a U.S male, he might live another 10 years. So, the number 150, is merely symbolic, media fodder. A number thrown at the general public by the court so that they come to appreciate the immensity of his crime in the light of his punishment. I'm usually a man of peace, but I believe Madoff should have been let alone with his victims who shouldn't be punished if they were to resort to their primal instincts.

We associate crimes with where they leave their victims. So a rapist or a murderer is at the top of the list. Fine. But a pick-pocketer should not be relegated to the bottom just because he picks the wallet of a salaried man. The effects of a loss of what could be a sum equivalent to a weekly budget could be colossal. And in a time & culture of credit cards, hedge funds and electronic transfers, Madoff is proportional to a billion pick-pocketers. Not only did people lose their beach homes, but also their retirement savings. I was listening to this woman who lost $750000. A typical response-attitude would be "She's a rich bitch anyway, she just lost a yacth. She's not on the roads." But as I listened to her story I realized that it was her whole life's savings and she has worked hard and smart to get where she was. To rob that money was robbing her of her life's fruits, of her belief in humanity. Without spilling a drop of blood, he has sucked the life and soul out of her. That's as big a crime as murder.

No comments: