One day, Woman A was killed by a Man B. Findings on the inquiry determined they were lovers. They fought heavily on the murder day, and the man lost his temper and murdered her. The police decided to release the identities of him, because his crime method was so cruel. As soon as his identity was released, it was embroiled in controversy among the entire nation. With various opinions for and against, two letters arrived in INDIGO today.
* This is fictitious, not real.
To the chief editor of INDIGO
Dear Chief Editor, I decided to send a letter to you because I cannot endure my sadness. I am the mother of A, murdered by B a few days ago. I could not believe my daughter was killed by her boyfriend, and I was too mad to even have meals. My dear A was so nice to everybody and she loved B a lot. However, just his lacking in patience took my daughter's precious life. I think he deserves losing his privacy, as it is much weaker punishment in comparison to murder. I cannot understand why people worry about B's human rights, because he first infringed on my daughter's rights. It is unfair to protect his human rights, isn't it?
In addition, releasing criminals' identity is not only for us, but for everyone. First of all, it is the right to know that people are entitled. The whole nation has the right to know who committed a crime in our society. So in reverse, protecting criminals' human rights can be a clear human rights violation. And, second offense rate in Korea is not very low. If a released prisoner committed the same crime, who would be responsible for it? By knowing criminals' identities, innocent people are able to get cautious and prevent second offenses.
I am so miserable that I cannot write this letter anymore. Yesterday, I watched a shocking TV program. It showed just my daughter's face, and B's face was blotted out by a camera blur... It is not only our case where an assailant's identity is more protected than the victim's. It is patently unfair and it doesn't make sense! I really hope to release the horrible criminals' identity, not only B's. It is quite reasonable.
- Enduring sadness, A's mother
To the Chief Editor of INDIGO
I am a little worried about sending this letter, because I guess you might look at me strangely like everyone else. I am the sister of the alleged murderer B, killing his girlfriend. Oh, maybe you can know me, because there are so many pictures and swear words about me in SNS. Not only that, my father resigned of his own free will, being impatient of strange looks from his co-workers. My mother was a member of badminton club, but she also decided to quit the club yesterday for the same reasons mentioned above. In addition, I received a call from my brother's ex-girlfriend. She said, as soon as B's identity was released, netizens started to abuse her for no reason at all in social networks. Besides these situations, there are so many people going through trouble because they know B. I admit my brother committed a terrible murder, but why must we suffer like this? My father, mother, and I were the same family like others. But, our family is broken because one member is a murderer. Yes, I was also a person who supported releasing identities of criminals, but if I did know how other people that knew them would suffer, I would have never agreed on that.
Actually, I feel unpleasant for releasing my brother's identity. There was a similar murder two months ago, but the murderer's identity was not released. The police said they released my brother's identity because his murder method was crueler than that other murderer. I cannot accept what is the criterion for ‘cruelty.’ There were so many criminals I think crueler, but why my brother’s information the only released? Releasing someone's identity is not a very simple and carefree thing like the police did to my brother. It is not fair releasing one's identity without a clear standard.
One more thing, I am really worried about my brother's future. He committed an unforgivable deed, but someday he will be released from prison. How could he live on from that day? It is difficult to predict that he would live in peace, being a common eyesore. It can cause him to commit another crime. Not only that, once he becomes released, he is a normal citizen of society. But, if he will suffer from his revealed identity, it is a definite abuse of his human right. It has no positive effect without consoling the victim's family. I know my words can give them wounds, but it is definite.
I am really sorry about my brother's unforgivable murder. But, please think one more time how miserable you would be if you were a family of them. Releasing an assailant's identity is just not a punishment to them, but to numerous innocent people.
- Yours truly, B's sister
What do you think about the two letters above? Regardless of which opinion is more reasonable, it is an obvious fact that releasing criminals' identity is never a simple issue. Protecting both victims' and assailants' humanity makes it difficult to judge. The next two cover stories will give you more chances to think about it.
최은지 기자 firstname.lastname@example.org