Zheng Xiaoyu, formerly the man responsible for ensuring the safety of China's
foodstuffs and pharmaceuticals, was executed yesterday for corruption.
The Supreme People's Court approved the death sentence for Zheng, 62, the former
head of the State Food and Drug Administration (SFDA), for taking kickbacks
worth 6.5 million yuan (£420,000) from drug companies to ensure he would approve medicines that should have been taken off the market.
The execution stands as a warning after a series of health scandals have damaged the "Made in China" brand at home and abroad.
The death penalty debate here in the U.S. rages on and on and on, and rightly so. I personally support the death penalty for certain crimes, on the condition that guilt is unquestionable.
But the death penalty for corruption? Actually, I don't think I mind.
I say that because I'd like to believe I would not become corrupt if ever I were given enough power to make people want to corrupt me.
On that note, I think there is and always will be corruption in government. It's just too easy. Think about how much corruption has been uncovered, and then think about how much else there is that didn't make it to the public. Yet, all of it affects you and me, no matter how small, because then government isn't acting in the interest of the public, but in their own interest.
I think it would cut the corruption way down. Granted, to even think about it you have to suspend your feelings on murder vs. vengeance vs. punishment. But go ahead, think about it.
If, instead of a short stint in a minimum security lockup, former Gov. John Rowland had been executed for his corrupt acts, wouldn't that make every other government staffer in the state think twice about doing something corrupt?
These aren't desperate, hungry criminals on the streets - these are white-collar folks who make good money and have things they want to live for. They're not going to risk a death sentence for a beach house or a vacation to Maui.
So you'd only have to do it once in a great while.
And, even if you ended up having to do it often, all you'd be doing is getting rid of corrupt politicians, which isn't too much of a loss.
All you have to do is get past the whole sanctity of life conflict, which, judging by such things as abortion laws that contradict assisted suicide laws, already could go either way in this country, depending on whom you ask and whom you plan to kill.