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Old 06-26-07, 11:28 AM   #1
FlyingAnchor
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Remember Michael P. Fay?

I'm a little strange:
I was thinking about the incident in Singapore some years back and that put me on a train of thought about caning. What a punishment!
I don't want this to get ugly and if it does could it be moved to P/R quickly, please?
Anyway, what do you think of caning and could/should it be used here in good old US of A?

Steven
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Old 06-26-07, 11:45 AM   #2
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Whatever I think of caning, it is the law in Singapore, and the whole international outcry was a bit silly... If I unfurl a Falun Gong banner in Tiananmen Square, I'm going to be dealt with according to Chinese law. Same deal with Singapore.

Anyway, I won't say that I'm in favour of canings, and I think the Singaporean government is excessively nannyish... BUT it is amazing what has been built in Singapore out of essentially nothing. It is a real success story.


Edit: Why were you thinking about Michael Fay? I can't even remember when that was... early 90s?
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Old 06-26-07, 11:48 AM   #3
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I remember Michael Fay. Gosh that was early- to mid-eighties, no? I seem to remember that they reduced the number of strikes or something.... Too long ago.
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Old 06-26-07, 11:55 AM   #4
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Reduced the strokes from six to four, plus time in jail. I can't remember what put me on the mental trip but I looked up Mr. Fay and after he came back to America he turned into a druggy. Burned his hands and face doing butane (sniffing) plus some other things.
Caning is harsh but never life threatening, I can see the reason for it and in Singapore it is never a public punishment and it is done under the supervision of a doctor.
Michael Fay did not turn out well.
Steven
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Old 06-26-07, 12:05 PM   #5
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_P._Fay

1994, as it turns out, when he was a student Singapore American School... so he really was a teenaged expat brat. I have a feeling I've met people rather like him
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Old 06-26-07, 12:09 PM   #6
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FA, I wonder how much of that had to do with the caning, and how much to do with the media attention. Sad either way.

I understand that some people simply pass out from the pain, BTW. Don't know how it is in Singapore, but I've heard of some authorities who use caning for punishment reviving the one being caned before continuing!

As gbcb said, one needs to know and respect the local laws when one travels to other countries, and, should one break the law, one must anticipate the worst-case scenario of being treated like any other lawbreaker. The State Department and the local Embassy are great sources for information regarding behaviours which are unacceptable or illegal in a host country....
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Old 06-26-07, 12:12 PM   #7
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Me too:
It seems to keep things down in Singapore but looking more closely I see the number of canings going way up in recent years.
I have been to Singapore a few times and the country was very friendly and clean, I really liked it there and felt safe.
Steven
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Old 06-26-07, 12:15 PM   #8
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By the way, I remember why I was thinking of Mr. Fay.
There is a drug mule that was going through Singapore that got a death sentence for carrying drugs. He was from Australia and this raised a rucus similar to Mr. Fay.
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Old 06-26-07, 12:35 PM   #9
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Haven't thought of that incident in a long time, but I pretty much grew up in Jakarta (born in the US but lived in Indonesia for 10 years) and left in '96, and I remember this incident definitely made the news around those parts.

Personally I didn't much care one way or the other...figured if he did something wrong he should be punished for it and far be it for foreigners to tell a government how to enforce their laws. And having been to and through Singapore more times than I can count, it was always very clean and safe, so they are obviously doing something right. Plus, we used their strict laws to our advantage by using simple chewing gum (which was not sold locally, but could be brought in by visitors in small quantities) to trade to the shop owners for access to banned CD's
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Old 06-26-07, 12:45 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FlyingAnchor
By the way, I remember why I was thinking of Mr. Fay.
There is a drug mule that was going through Singapore that got a death sentence for carrying drugs. He was from Australia and this raised a rucus similar to Mr. Fay.
Is this a new one? There was one last year some time, also from Australia. Of course, the louder the Australian government complained, the more likely it was that he would be executed -- that's the most effective way to ensure the death penalty works as a deterrent (again, not saying I agree, but that's how the Singaporean government sees it).
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Old 06-26-07, 03:30 PM   #11
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Compared to the US laws where a criminal record is a lifelong hindrance to obtaining future work or promotions, I think a caning, some time in jail (mainly to recover from the caning), and have the records sealed (unless the offender does a subsequent crime) from public view is a good alternative.

Singapore astonishes me, in how they made their city/country out of nothing and into one of the more prosperous areas on the globe. I've also heard their ambassador give a speech... one of the most intelligent people I have ever heard speak in my life.
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Old 06-26-07, 11:56 PM   #12
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The ship I was on told everyone before we pulled in to behave or else the hammer would come down.
They also told us (not sure it's true) that at the time you had to have a million bucks in the bank in order to become a naturalized citizen. This was 1992/3 Think Gulf War One.
I went to the Tiger Balm Gardens while there and I really liked them, simply gorgeous. Look at me, I hijacked my own thread.
gbcb, I am not sure about the timing of the drug mule, but I was reading an article about it so you are surely correct.
Steven
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Old 06-27-07, 02:49 AM   #13
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If you think singapore is made from nothing, check out Dubai. All there was there was sand at one point, and look at it not.

That being said, I'm not as familiar with Singapore as I am with Dubai, where I've spent a VERY short amount of time. I've heard things about how awesome singapore is and how the law is enforced.

I think the point is that a lot of westerners are spoilt into thinking that their way of doing things is best and they can get away with whatever they want internationally. People forget that they have to be wary of what the laws are where they are.
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Old 06-27-07, 11:42 AM   #14
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ridethecliche
+ a bunch.
We pulled into Thailand (Patya Beach) and one of our men got drunk and started something with the cops there, killed one and wounded another before they shot him. The rest of us had to be wary for the rest of our inport time.
My favorite part of being in the Navy was going to and seeing so many different cultures.
Respecting others cultures is paramount.
Steven
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Old 06-27-07, 12:37 PM   #15
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_P._Fay
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