It doesn’t matter if you’re rich or poor, a king or a beggar, the one thing we all have in common is, we are all humans. We live. We breathe. We laugh. We cry. We experience happiness and sadness.
That’s being human.
But there’s also humanity.
The justice and compassion that we all deserve.
To give respect is a good thing. Respect the institution. Respect each other.
Should we insult or mock somebody’s parents? No, we shouldn’t. It’s rude.
But if doing so leads to 3 to 15 years imprisonment per count… that’s inhumanity.
Rudeness is an unfortunate human behavior.
Inhumanity is a society barbaric and backward.
If a person robs you, you would have lost your wealth.
If a person kills you, you would have lost your life.
If a person insults your parent or the king… your feeling would be hurt.
That impact is simply hurt feelings or the phrase that people like the use, “trampling the heart.”
If 3-15 years imprisonment is the punishment of hearts trampled, then the question becomes, where is our humanity?
Other countries have lese majeste laws. But only Saudi Arabia has a harsher punishment than Thailand.
Britain and Norway abolished their lese majeste laws. Other counties have the law but don’t use the law. But never mind, don’t worry about them. Let’s talk about Thailand’s context.
They weigh between rudeness and inhumanity, and they chose humanity.
And none of those countries met with an apocalyptic end.
“We are a land of compromise.”
So, shall we compromise?
Let’s say, half the country wants Section 112 abolished. The other half doesn’t.
In Holland, there was a man who accused the king of being a murderer, a rapist, and a thief. The penalty was 30 days imprisonment.
For the crime of trampling on the hearts of a segment of the Dutch people.
Can we inject some humanity into the law?
Are we able to control our emotions, our rage, anger, and hatred? Are we able to summon enough maturity to speak through logic and reasons on whether or not to abolish or to reduce the punishment?
Is our heart so trampled that our humanity is also destroyed?
But what cannot be compromised is the usage of Section 112 as a political tool to harass, persecute, imprison those who think differently.
Consider this: Hitting the share button on a news article about the king’s biography. Section 112.
Hitting the share button on audio clips deemed insulting. Section 112. 43 years imprisonment.
Dress up mockingly. Section 112.
Using the words “very brave” mockingly. Section 112.
Using the words “long live” mockingly. Section 112.
Giving a speech about monarchy reform. Section 112.
Asking about a company. Section 112.
And anyone can file the charge.
Clicking share or dressing up or mocking with words, can these things trample our hearts so much as to deserve 3-15 years imprisonment per count?
A rude person may hurt your feelings. Your heart may be trampled.
But an inhuman law not only deprives people of freedom but also deprives society of its humanity.