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Tony Watkins

 ~ Vernacular Design 

Why seek revenge Print E-mail

The police wanted me to work with them to bring an “attempted murder” charge against Bill Grayson. With enough witnesses they felt confident they would secure a conviction, which of course is what the police needed to gain promotion. I refused.



I listen to endless people seeking revenge through locking up people who are different from them. It is something of a national pastime and every politician seeks to get votes by dragging out the “law and order” issue and promising to build more prisons.

When you think it through however it is not quite as simple as that. Bill would probably have ended up convicted for seven years, but he would have been back on the streets in half that time, perhaps less because he was rich.  His uncontrollable anger would have flared after being bottled up for a year or two and he would have hunted me down. Probably he would have organised something from prison. At Karaka Bay he often had other people break in rather than doing it himself, and his strong gang connections left him with a pool of people to use if the price was right.

The police in contrast offer no protection for victims. You are on your own. Very much on your own. You need to actually get killed the next time around before the police will smell another promotion opportunity.

It is much better to not seek for revenge. This really confuses everyone because nobody can see where you are coming from. You step outside the game and suddenly none of the rules apply. You are supposed to hate and you do not waste your time. You are supposed to be afraid and suddenly the power everyone thought they held over you dissolves away. Instead of being a victim you become free. The threats become ineffective and that makes anger look really stupid.

Bill was really just a common bully, always used to getting his own way. He was admired for this by quite a few of the residents at Karaka Bay.

It was not necessary to stand up to Bill. It was only necessary for him to see himself for what he was. His shame made him want to creep away defeated. A bully with their power taken away is only a shell of a man. It is a pity to lock someone up when that takes away the opportunity for them to live with their shame. A healing community is a safe community for all.

Bill later “went religious” in the way that used car salesmen become Baptist preachers who offer salvation to all. Perhaps he found God, or perhaps God found him. Either way it was a good outcome. Healing is better than revenge. The past can be forgotten and we can all move on to better things.

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