和解就是正义

在南非,甚至整个世界,我们将伸张正义狭隘地理解为施以惩罚。随着暴力犯罪令人震惊地大幅度增加,随着骇人听闻的强奸和虐待儿童罪行变得日益恶化,如今恢复死刑的呼声常常充盈于耳,而且得到了公众的广泛支持。幸运的是,南非宪法法院已经裁定死刑不合乎宪法,这种刑罚在南非人民从种族隔离制度下解放出来的同时即被宣告废止。

令人悲哀的是,世界很多地方的男男女女似乎并没有摆脱圣经中“以眼还眼”的训诫,他们渴望对犯罪行为施以惩罚。事实上在一些穆斯林国家,一旦法律认定盗窃罪名成立,窃贼甚至会被当众砍断双手。但“以眼还眼”的圣经谚语实际本来意在防止凶手的亲属在家族复仇中无辜丧命。“以眼还眼”要求只把犯罪者本人作为目标,而不要波及无辜,如果说那些无辜者有罪,那么他们唯一的过错就是与罪犯沾亲带故。

因此与最初相比,“以眼还眼”的含义已经发生了变化,变成了以杀戮来抗拒杀戮。种族隔离时期的残忍暴行使得这种做法永远也不可能在我的国家获得成功。

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