Not like other murderers
This is an appropriate place to make a request of the media and the public in general: Leave the newborn infant alone.
A murderer is a murderer, or so it seems, and all murderers have the same legal standing. In his article, "Dangerous words" (October 29), Prof. Ze'ev Segal - referring to the demand to tighten the restrictions imposed on Yigal Amir - claims that "the law does not favor 'personal laws,' and adopting a law on this subject will also not prove beneficial, as laws can be changed."
Indeed, personal laws are problematic since a law and its enforcement have to be based on principle. However, it is under no circumstances permissible to treat Yigal Amir as if he were a murderer like all other murderers. A person who murders a social worker because she is a social worker should actually be charged with a double murder - because he killed a human being and because he killed the person because she worked in a certain profession. A murder of this type is different from the murder of a private individual or one that takes place during a robbery, for example.
This is true, too, of the murder of a doctor, a policeman, a judge and so forth. In fact, anyone who serves the public - in other words, a person who was appointed by the state to fill a public position - is worthy of and entitled to special protection, and anyone who dares to attack him or her must be included in a specific category of murderers: those who do not enjoy the rights that are accorded to other murderer-prisoners. And this is even more true when we are talking about someone who has murdered an elected public official, and on top of that, the prime minister. He must bear the mark of Cain forever.
My father, Shimon Peres, was also a "candidate" for murder by the hand of that same despicable assassin, who chose - in cold blood and in a premeditated fashion - to try to take the lives of elected representatives as a means of forcing the voters to accept his point of view; who cast a stain on an entire group of citizens, most of whom do not identify with him even if they do not necessarily accept the views of the late Yitzhak Rabin, and of Shimon Peres, may he have a long life.
This is an appropriate place to make a request of the media and the public in general: Leave the newborn infant alone. He does not deserve to suffer because of the transgressions of his parents, who did not hesitate to aggravate the feelings of the public by the demands they made concerning his arrival in the world. If the law proposed here is legislated, and the son grows up to see that his father was the worst of all murderers, perhaps he will some day ask himself for what and why.
The legislation of a law that distinguishes in principle between the murderers of private individuals and murderers who undermine the very basis of the state and democracy, and who harm the entire public - by attacking its emissaries - would make it unnecessary every time to discuss Yigal Amir once again. It would divert attention from the murderer and make the focus once again on the murder. And it would spare the children of Yitzhak Rabin the insufferable job that has befallen them: to have to intervene every time Amir abuses the country's legal system. It was not only their father who was assassinated. The rule of law, the democracy, and the entire Israeli public, both the supporters and the opponents of Rabin - all of us are the victims of that murder and we have the duty to remain on guard.
The author is a linguist and professor at Beit Berl Teachers Training College and daughter of Israel's president.