Trial By Jury and/or Fire

Right now, there’s a serious bushfire threatening homes to the east of Perth, which is sending out a huge cloud of smoke over the southern suburbs. It’s raining small pieces of ash, which look a lot like snow. It’s hard to breathe. The Subaru is getting dirty.
It’s times like this that the Internet proves its usefulness. Given that it’s not ‘top of the hour’, there are no radio reports to tell us what’s going on. (We’d have to wait until tonight for the TV news report, and tomorrow for the newspaper report. ) Heaven help us if the fire’s a few streets away.
Turning to the net, I’m informed:
* The CSIRO Sentinel shows us roughly where the fire is, and also a satellite photo of the amount of smoke which is being thrown out. Seems it’s over the back of Jarrahdale, an area of thick forest which is about 50ks away.
* ABC News Perth posts reports online for me to review at my leisure. People are being forced from their homes.
And it also seems some lackwits have been very busy overnight – lighting fires. Man, I hate school holidays.
Ainslie’s got out the law books and decided that we’re missing an important set of laws which connect property damage with crimes against the person. If someone gets killed or seriously injured as a result of these fires, as we saw happen just last week in South Australia, the dimbulb with the box of matches should be facing 20 years for manslaughter.
I propose a less circuitous route to justice: let the arsonist responsible for a major blaze be airlifted into the middle of the next one. Actually, let’s make them useful: put some firefighting equipment on their back (Let it not be said that I’m a man without compassion.)

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3 thoughts on “Trial By Jury and/or Fire

  1. Sending the fire bugs out to fight the fires is a good idea, the only thing is, without some training, they may prove more of a liabilty than help to those others really fighting the fires. I agree that some greater form of deterent or punishment is necessary.

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