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New Zealand's longest-running online daily news and commentary publication, now in its 25th year. The opinion pieces presented here are not purported to be fact but reasonable effort is made to ensure accuracy.

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I love this

19 December 2018

Technology is great stuff, especially when used to thwart the forces of badness and evil.

If you want to see what I'm talking about, take a look at BBC story and the associated YouTube video

This is a pure joy to read about and to watch.

I just love it when the bad guy gets their just deserts (and a face-full of glitter).

Thanks to modern technology, getting this sort of payback on thieves has never been easier and I certainly hope we see a lot more of this harmless, but incredibly effective approach to stemming petty theft.

My only concern is that it's probably illegal in some way, shape or form.

For example, you'll notice that the faces in the videos produced by the device are pixelated.

Why?

Well because it's probably a violation of someone's privacy to be filmed in their own car or house without their permission. We can't have the bad-guys' privacy being intruded upon now, can we?

I also suspect, at least in the USA, that the thief could sue for damages if they had to get their car valeted or if a piece of glitter got in their eye and required medical treatment.

Yes, the world really is *that* crazy.

Remember, we still regularly read of stories where elderly people are charged with assault when trying to stop young thugs, who have broken into their homes, from stealing their stuff by way of burglary.

One also has to marvel at the attitudes of police, both overseas and even here in New Zealand who, when offered irrefutable video evidence of offending, sometimes respond by saying "we're too busy". Never too busy to set up a checkpoint to make sure you've paid your rego though eh?

This is why we see so many pictures and videos from shop CCTV cameras on Facebook, documenting shoplifting or other crimes, after hapless victims are forced to pursue their own justice because of the need to police road-tax ahead of thefts.

I seem to recall that there are laws forbidding property owners from building "man traps" to catch or incapacitate those who would attempt to break in to private dwellings or steal property from same. Why the hell is that?

Surely, if you choose to break the law by breaking into someone's house or business, you should automatically forfeit your right to safety. Why so much protection for offenders and so little protection for victims?

With crimes of violence reported almost every day in this country, should we really have to stop and think about the rights of an attacker, should we be so unfortunate as to be in the wrong place at the wrong time?

Sometimes I think the world was a somewhat more just place when people were allowed to stick up for themselves and offenders were treated like the criminals they are.

Or am I just a grumpy old man?

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