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Author Topic: The Death Penelty. . .  (Read 1653 times)

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Offline ShrowdedPoetTopic starter

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The Death Penelty. . .
« on: April 29, 2008, 01:56:12 PM »
Ok, so how do we all feel about the death penelty? 

I myself am for it but some are against it.

I have a few thoughts on it:

If you are man/woman enough to commit a crime that warrants the death penelty (murder, torture, rape, pedifile ect. . .) then you should be man/woman enough to take the punishment when you get caught.  ALSO, lethal injection is toooooo friendly.  You should be executed in a way befiting the crime, not going to sleep!  If I were to commit a crime and get caught that warrants the death penelty I would be ashamed to be executed by lethal injection!  But it's just my opinion and I am very opinionated, so now I want to hear yours.

Offline Hunter

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2008, 01:57:23 PM »
*declines to answer this one*

Offline ShrowdedPoetTopic starter

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Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2008, 02:05:11 PM »
If you decline why do you post?

Offline Greenthorn

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2008, 02:19:04 PM »
-I- will answer!

I believe in eye for an eye.  If one murders someone by cutting them to pieces..then enjoy your fate ya sick fuck!  If one rapes, then they should be raped..then murdered (only because well..some might commit the crime to experience the fantasy of being raped themselves).  You shoot someone..let me load my gun now.

Actually let me change my answer...rapists should have their penises cut off..not just medically castrated.  Let them have to live their lives carrying a bag of urine on their hip. 

Yes...I -am- mean!!

Offline ShrowdedPoetTopic starter

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Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2008, 02:30:04 PM »
Not mean, you just have your opinions as do I.  Mine are very much like yours.  Except the penelty for Pediphiles may be different.  I have a daughter so I am hard hard on that but I think I'd still be hard hard on it.  Anyone else?

Offline NightBird

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #5 on: April 29, 2008, 02:31:43 PM »
There's a presumption present in most discussions regarding the death penalty, including most of what I see here, that the person executed will always be the person who committed the crime. Actual ratios differ in various regions of the United States, but some areas go as high as 30% of felony convictions/plea bargains being found improper after independent judicial review, not in terms of technicalities in legal language, but with evidence handling, withholding of exonerating evidence or other variety of gross prosecutorial misconduct that came from a greater desire to achieve the 'win' than to find the guilty party.

There are cut-and-dried cases, certainly, but not all that many. Would you be as 'mean,' GT, if it were you or a loved one wrongly accused? I have had a family member in that situation, and it left me with very little confidence in the way many people in the criminal 'justice' system go about their business.

Offline Greenthorn

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #6 on: April 29, 2008, 02:33:56 PM »
Right, I did not think of that aspect of it Nightbird.  But with DNA evidence and such, especially for rape crimes..

Of course, I still think that we need to come up with a true lie detector that can be used on victims also...to ensure less false imprisionments. 

Offline ShrowdedPoetTopic starter

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Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #7 on: April 29, 2008, 02:38:20 PM »
I am very sorry about what happened in your life.  Yes I did think of this and I do still think of it but I don't really see an upfront solution.  I was just actually talking about people who definatley committed the crimes.  I am very sorry to not be clear on this.

Offline RubySlippers

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #8 on: April 29, 2008, 03:19:07 PM »
Well its mostly an issue for the States some allow it and some don't so I won't point out any legal issues here.

I would favor a simple approach you have such hard evidence its irrefutable the person commited a crime like a mass shooting with lots of witnesses then the death penalty is fine barring insanity or the person being a minor child. If not then give them natural life under a chance they might be innocent if the crime was serious enough. The major exceptions would be treason and other gross crimes against the State during times of war and the like.


Offline kongming

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #9 on: April 30, 2008, 01:19:17 AM »
Well, I am against the death penalty for a number of reasons.

Let us start with the possibility of a framing, a mistake, or corrupt prosecution. It's too easy to make a mistake there and kill an innocent person. There are even enough instances of a couple having sex, the female getting angry the next day and telling police she was raped.

Next, let's move on to this: a person commits a crime that will result in execution. They now have no reason whatsoever to turn themselves in, or indeed to do anything except run and fight to the death. "In for a penny, in for a pound." and similar phrases actually resulted from times when people would be given the death penalty for a minor offence, and discover the freedom of "I can't make things worse."

Some time ago in China (as in, hundreds of years ago), a minister had a theory that if severe penalties were handed out for minor crimes, people would simply not commit crimes at all, and would never think of a major crime, because "If I could be harshly beaten for littering, or executed for skipping work for a day, imagine what murder would result in!" What happened, you ask? A few workers found themselves unable to work due to weather. It soon ended up with them realising "We are going to be put to death. You know, they're going to kill us no matter what, so let's at least fight this."

They ended up causing an armed revolt, and the minister was overthrown. This being ancient China, I imagine he was killed, and his immediate family exterminated, as well as his ancestors dug up and mutilated. Because they did that back then, to unpopular people.

So, a person murders someone now? Well, if they're going to get death for it, there isn't anything stopping them from loading up (let's tackle "No, you don't need to keep a selection of firearms in your house." another time, or not at all) and killing a few other people they don't like. Or perhaps any witnesses, the local police... basically anyone until they are finally taken down. They'll be more likely to take hostages, too, and to actually back up their threats and kill hostages if need be, simply because the worst that can happen is the default of what is already happening: they're going to die. They have nothing to lose, but something to gain.

Remember, laws don't exist to make you feel good about yourself. They don't exist to create justice in capital letters. They don't exist so that "people get what's coming to them." You want Abrahamic religions for that, not a legal system. The law is designed primarily for the same reason society is: so that people are rewarded for working with the system and being a part of it, and penalised for not doing so. In short, if you can fix vehicles and cook really well, but haven't the first clue about medicine, then even if you become self-sufficient for food, you're in trouble when you get sick unless you become part of the system. Be a member of society and you put your part in, doing a job and getting money for it, and then you get something out of it - you spend this money for things you can't do for yourself. And in some "communist" countries, they even look after you if you are sick or injured.

Likewise, if you work directly against the system, they make things difficult for you - you can't get things for free, and crimes have penalties attached to them. The legal system is designed to dissuade crime so that people work with the system as part of society.

Looking at it that way, you do want to always provide the option of "Stop what you're doing and cut your losses here." You can't do that the moment you decide to kill them. You can do that if they are looking at, for instance, a 20 year sentence (an actual 20 years as opposed to 2 years that might be increased up to 20), with it just getting worse for anything else they do. So they murder someone. 20 years. If they elect to try to escape the law, it's already getting worse, adding years onto it. Perhaps adding a fine as well, and taking privileges away in prison. They decide to take a hostage and barricade themselves in a building? Fine, it's just getting worse.

From this viewpoint, if you really have to kill someone, let's say you're a president with a hard-on for murdering people and you need to justify it, then the only crime that could warrant it would be the ultimate form of working against the system: armed rebellion/revolt. And you just don't see that these days.

Now, that being said? When I hear of a horrific crime, it sickens me and my first thought is that I hope they die painfully. But that subsides soon enough, because I know it's a base human reaction. It's violent and animalistic, but we all have it there. The trick is overcoming it.

Offline Pumpkin Seeds

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #10 on: April 30, 2008, 06:43:24 AM »
I find the death penalty to be largely useless for keeping social order.  Many studies have pointed to the death penalty serving no purpose in crime prevention.  Perhaps if the death penalty were used with the purpose of ending the lives of people that cannot be rehabilitated, then I must consider it useful.  Yet most murderers can be rehabilitated, in fact most murderers are harmless.  This comes from the fact that most murders are crimes of passion, made in the heat of the moment.  Serial killers are quite rare, as are people that torture others for recreation.  These, I believe, are considered to be without redemption and so I can see the death penalty’s application.  The death penalty is not used for that purpose though, hence the common quote of “eye for an eye.”  Retribution and a sense of revenge are given with the death penalty, not justice and social order.

This talk of turning the methods onto the criminal are also disappointing since this shows that the death penalty is more about retribution than justice.  That the death penalty is not a spectacle and is not an area of passion is what stands at its core.  To gruesomely kill another human being would serve only to debase the system and more than likely traumatize those who must perform the act.  Only those that could find it in their own souls to “return the favor” would take that job.  Then the question comes if they are the same as those they kill, but have merely found a legal outlet for their monsters.  For all its flaws, the death penalty is perfect in its symmetry and presentation.  Cold, effective and without human emotion or passion derailing the solemn nature that has become the hallmark of the modern execution.  The practices are almost ritualistic with the last meal, the long walk, last words and the confrontation of the dying to the accuser.  This keeps the guards removed from the act of killing another while also preventing that person from being a martyr.  With the death penalty, all its victims are forgotten almost as quickly as they died.

As a woman, I find rape horrifying.  The act of being violated so intimately and having something so treasured used in that way is something that turns my stomach.  Rape at its core is supposed to be like that, an act of humiliation and dominance.  That in mind, cutting off anyone’s penis will not make that go away.  I could be violated the same with a broomstick, his fingers or simply by being forced to degrade myself in front of the attacker.  The penis is simply an instrument for a male attacker, not the motive or cause.  Keep in mind also that the assumption that the attacker has a penis is just that, an assumption.  More and more, research is showing that women can be predatory and can rape men.  Remember that the operative word is “no” for rape, not sexual excitement.  Simply because a man is aroused does not remove his ability and right to say no.

There was the issue of guilt brought up and then the clarification that this discussion pertains to only the certainly guilty.  That is fine and well in a perfect world.  Giving into that basis, let’s assume that all the people on death row are indeed guilty of their crimes.  The problem comes that not all sentencing is fair and equal.  For instance the main indicator of achieving the death penalty is the race of the victim.  The reason most death row inmates are white is because white people have a much higher tendency to kill other white people.  Crime occurs within racial boundaries more often than not.  Women are far less likely to receive the death penalty than men.  The presence of an expensive (good) attorney can also heavy influence whether a person receives the death penalty.  So while that person may be guilty of a crime, if he had been born rich or had simply killed a black man instead of a white man then he would be sitting somewhere else.  So while one killer sits alive and safe, if wishes were granted than someone convicted of a similar crime would be shot to death behind the utility shed.  Not certain that seems fair.

As a human being, I understand the desire to see people suffer for their crimes as their victims do.  Working in the medical field and going to school to rise further in that field, I’ve heard disturbing cases from other nurses.  I’ve heard of a woman giving birth to her child, wrapping it in plastic and dumping it in a trashcan before going to play Nintendo.  Seen a woman beaten by the claw end of a hammer to her face and then struck in her pregnant stomach with the blunt end until she miscarried and this done by her own husband.  This done right in front of her five year old who called the police on his own father.  Believe me when I say that I would want nothing more than to watch these people understand what suffering they have caused.  Doing that though does not bring back the dead or heal the wounded.  So do we debase ourselves and our society for what purpose?  The death penalty will not stop another baby from being put in a trashcan or another woman from being beaten within an inch of her life.  There is no other purpose than the selfish desire to watch someone else suffer under a mask of justice.

Offline Cherri Tart

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #11 on: April 30, 2008, 10:40:16 AM »
i am against it.  It's very simple for me.  I don't think that anyone has the right to kill another human being, regardless of what they've done.  Sure, there are times when I am angry enough about a crime to want to see someone punished that severely for it, but in the end, no.  How does that make us any better, if we are willing to kill a fellow human being?  Oh, I have no issues with locking them away for life with no possible chance of parole - they lost the right to freedom when them took another life/raped someone/etc.   

I'd have to say, btw, that feeling extends to all of our four legged friends too - they should have the right to live without fear of being killed and eaten - but that's a while nother can of worms that i know better then to open. :)

just thought i'd share this - it's a song by Ani Difranco which pretty much sums it up for me...

The big day has come
The bell is sounding
I run my hands through my hair one last time
Outside the prison walls
The town is gathering
People are trading crime for crime

Everyone needs to see the prisoner
They need to make it even easier
They see me as a symbol, and not a human being
That way they can kill me
Say it's not murder, it's a metaphor
We are killing off our own failure
And starting clean

Standing in the gallows
Everyone turned my way
I hear a voice ask me
If I've got any last words to say
And I'm looking out over the field of familiar eyes
Somewhere in a woman's arms a baby cries

I think guilt and innocence
They are a matter of degree
What might be justice to you
Might not be justice to me
I went to far, I'm sorry
I guess now I'm going home
So let any amongst you cast the first stone
Now we've got all these complicated machines
So no one person ever has to have blood on their hands
We've got complex organizations
And if everyone just does their job
No one person has to understand

You might be the wrong colour
You might be too poor
Justice isn't something just anyone can afford
You might not pull the trigger
You might be out in the car
And you might get a lethal injection
'Cause we take a metaphor that far

The big day has come
The bell is sounding
I run my hands through my hair one last time
Outside the prison walls
The town has gathered
People are trading crime for crime

Offline Jefepato

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #12 on: April 30, 2008, 11:38:12 AM »
I don't have a problem with the death penalty in principle, at least in extreme cases.  If someone commits murder, gets out of jail 25 years later, and starts killing people again, he really can't be salvaged.  Same goes for people with patterns of the most heinous crimes (rape, torture, etc.).  In short, it should be reserved for criminals who are demonstrably undeterrable.

The problem with the death penalty is its finality.  No take-backs if you got the wrong guy.  And it seems like our prison system can't go two months without tripping over someone exonerated by DNA evidence.  (Really, life without parole would actually be worse than the death penalty if it wasn't correctable.)

Basically, the death penalty needs to stop until they get all the innocent people off death row.  At this rate, I figure that won't be happening any time soon, if ever.

(Criminal law is such an interesting topic, but no way in hell will I ever practice it...)

Offline Zakharra

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #13 on: April 30, 2008, 11:58:21 AM »
 The death penalty is justice. Often the only justice the murdered person will ever get.  With today's technology, it is easier to prove if someone did it and all available technology should be used to determine of said person did in fact do the deed.

 It should be used for those who kill purposefully. Crimes of passion can be forgive to a greater extent, but those people who are psychos should be put down. I'd rather see justice, a life for a life, than to see them rot in jail, sucking up money that can be spent elsewhere until the person died of age related diseases.

 Financially it is better to knock the perp off than pay $30K+ a year for 40-50 years.

 
Quote
Basically, the death penalty needs to stop until they get all the innocent people off death row.  At this rate, I figure that won't be happening any time soon, if ever.

 It is very likely we could eliminate 99%, but there is virtually no chance that we'd be able to keep every innocent off death row. A unfortunate problem.

Offline kongming

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #14 on: April 30, 2008, 12:06:44 PM »
Financially it is better to knock the perp off than pay $30K+ a year for 40-50 years.

I can think of many better, easier ways to save money, if that's the big picture. Let's start with an ineffective "war on muslims terror" then move onto an ineffective "war on drugs". Trillions right there. You'd never save that much just by killing more people.

Quote
It is very likely we could eliminate 99%, but there is virtually no chance that we'd be able to keep every innocent off death row. A unfortunate problem.

So that's all that is to you? That innocent people will be getting killed by the state - let me remind you that people are usually put there for murder - killing innocent (or not-so-innocent) people - but the state is allowed to commit murder, and if an innocent person is murdered by the state, that's just an unfortunate problem? I prefer to call it an atrocity.

In order to accept that innocents will be murdered on death row, you have to accept that people get murdered - and if that's the case, surely you're not in fact going to use the death penalty for murder, because it's apparently not so much a problem that the government can't do it, so what will you use it for?

Offline Trieste

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Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #15 on: April 30, 2008, 12:41:47 PM »
So many people have already commented with points I usually bring to mind, I'm not going to really go for that, but something that Poet mentioned caught my eyes...

[...] ALSO, lethal injection is toooooo friendly.  You should be executed in a way befiting the crime, not going to sleep!  [...]

IF they inject the correct chemicals into you and IF they make the injection correctly, you would not be going to sleep. You would be first given a strong muscle relaxant to cause paralysis everywhere. So for the first few seconds, you are awake. You are aware. You are going to die. And you cannot move. Then you will be given a strong sedative that may or may not knock you out, or fuzz you up. So you may well be awake.

And you can't speak. Can't move. Can't feel. But you could be awake to feel your heart stop from the third and final injection. You should be asleep... but the effects of the chemicals are unknown in specific. So you could very well be wide awake. Kind of drowsy and a little out of it, but you'd feel the tightness coming on... the tingling in your left fingers (if you're a man; women don't tend to experience this as much, I'm told) followed by a bit of a shooting numbness... then it begins to feel as if your chest is going to burst. And you can't breathe. And the pain is choking you. And then you die.

And that's about best case scenario. If they inject you incorrectly, you could have excruciating chemical burns along the insides of your arms. It could take you an hour to die while your heart struggles the whole time. While you slowly suffocate one body part at a time because oxygenated blood is not getting where it needs to be. There are too many 'if's in that equation for me, personally, to define it as anything close to 'friendly'. Death is not friendly. Death is excruciating in some way, if only because your body wants to live, because we as living beings need to survive. It's how we've gotten this far. Death is not friendly.

And then imagine going through all of that if you are wrongly convicted. The death penalty is only viable if we can implicitly trust the justice system - which we cannot. DNA evidence is not infallible. Forensics are not infallible. Human error still exists. We are not machines. (I'll point out as an aside that machines make mistakes, too.) We live, we breathe, we err. Which is why we have no right to kill people. Ever.

Offline LordAnubis

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #16 on: April 30, 2008, 01:48:20 PM »
Personally, my opinion on the death penalty is ambiguous because I don't think it should be outlawed, I have seen things in my lifetime that I looked at and felt it was the very appriorate thing to do because of the nature of the crimes being committed and the overwhelming evidence stacked against the person.  At the same time, there are alot of foul ups along the way that can put the wrong people with the needle in their arm.

What it comes down to is the Death Penelty should become what a police officers gun is supposed to be, the last line.  When all else fails this is what is done.  Somepeople may argue this is already the case or other people may bring up the still chance for innocent people to be in the execution chamber so I'm going to explain it further.

Prisons get filled with guilty and innocent alike because  of the court system, this is absolutely unavoidable and while it really sucks the concept of a perfect system is a mental exercise and because we're not perfect can not come to be.  So the Death Penelty should be removed from the initial punishment line, you can't be given the death penelty on your first court visit barring extreme circumstance.  Most murder and rape, while horrible doesn't qualify.  The Death Penelty can come from conduct within the jail.  The purpose of Jail and parole are to punish you for misdeeds and ideal reform you.  People may laugh at the concept, I do sometimes, but it's the idea.  There are some people who go to jail and get worse.  They actively seek to continue their activities kill within the prisons and show no sign of wanting to turn their life around.  That is where the Death Penelty comes into play.  Your in prison for committing a murder and when you leave your ready to do it again you don't get to leave.  Once your out of the prison system the best the police force can do is possibly catch you in the act if they are forewarded but more realisticly react to your crimes.

There are people who either by choice or environments they can not or will not escape from marginalize other people's lives for selfish ends.  They rape, kill, sell drugs and perpetuate the environment and system that causes the next generation around them to feel this is their only choice in life.  These are the people you execute.  It isn't about the state's right to murder people for murdering other people and it isn't about victum or criminal's rights.  Parts of every country will slip through the cracks and people will suffer, we can bandage it up as best we can when we see it, but there will be people who resist improving that area with everything they have because they prosper and leech off those stuck there.  They can't be allowed to continue.

The state should treat the Death Penelty like it is, a very ugly thing.  Something they should strive to never have to use on someone, but until that day, use it like a trimmer.  Cut away what is unredeamable and will seek to onl drag more down with it, not as a premptive or a punishment, the criminal first has to be found willing to continue on in his criminal acts that are severe enough.

At least that's my take on it.  Sorry if it sounded preachy at all.

Offline Zakharra

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #17 on: April 30, 2008, 04:15:00 PM »
I can think of many better, easier ways to save money, if that's the big picture. Let's start with an ineffective "war on muslims terror" then move onto an ineffective "war on drugs". Trillions right there. You'd never save that much just by killing more people.

 
 Those discussions have been had on other threads so I will not dredge them up. Except to make just a few small points on the 'War on Terror'. It is 1, a war. We were attacked, no question about that. 2, We are fighting an ideal, in this case a religion that is being used to further some goals. ANY response we do is a bad one, but we have to respond somehow. 3, we are fighting by rules, they aren't.   

 Any further lengthy discussion can be done in another thread.

So that's all that is to you? That innocent people will be getting killed by the state - let me remind you that people are usually put there for murder - killing innocent (or not-so-innocent) people - but the state is allowed to commit murder, and if an innocent person is murdered by the state, that's just an unfortunate problem? I prefer to call it an atrocity.

In order to accept that innocents will be murdered on death row, you have to accept that people get murdered - and if that's the case, surely you're not in fact going to use the death penalty for murder, because it's apparently not so much a problem that the government can't do it, so what will you use it for?

 People are killed all the time. And not by the state. Auto accidents, home accidents, being murdered.. So the state argument is a straw dog in some ways.

 Your last paragraph is disturbing to me. People ARE murdered all the time. There is no 100% accurate process to make sure of anything. Except death. That is the one thing that always succeeds. I am arguing for using the best technology to make sure that the people who earn the death penalty truly deserve it.

Offline Celestial Goblin

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #18 on: May 01, 2008, 11:58:51 AM »
Quote
Those discussions have been had on other threads so I will not dredge them up. Except to make just a few small points on the 'War on Terror'. It is 1, a war. We were attacked, no question about that. 2, We are fighting an ideal, in this case a religion that is being used to further some goals. ANY response we do is a bad one, but we have to respond somehow. 3, we are fighting by rules, they aren't.   
All points are untrue, but It's a different topic.

Quote
People are killed all the time. And not by the state. Auto accidents, home accidents, being murdered.. So the state argument is a straw dog in some ways.
 Your last paragraph is disturbing to me. People ARE murdered all the time. There is no 100% accurate process to make sure of anything. Except death. That is the one thing that always succeeds. I am arguing for using the best technology to make sure that the people who earn the death penalty truly deserve it.

Making the best possible law to minimize amount of people getting killed is what others are arguing for. Not being able to prevent auto incidents in 100% is not a reason not to have traffic regulations aiming to reduce the number of them.

This paragraph makes no sense:
Quote
There is no 100% accurate process to make sure of anything. Except death. That is the one thing that always succeeds.
If an innocent gets killed that's still a success?

The way I see it, it depends how someone tries to justify DP and by extension, killing some innocent people together with the guilty.

 - DP is cheaper than a life sentence = some innocents must die to save money
 - DP is justice according to my own moral beliefs = some innocents must die to make me feel better
 - DP is a deterrent to murder = some innocents must die to save lives of other innocents

Now, first two are IMHO undefensible, but someone might disagree. The last one is, again IMHO, the only argument that could be made for death penalty being used, but...

...is there any proof at all that death penalty actually reduces the number of murders? Was study done? Was it criticized? Applied with results?

Also, death penalty isn't as cheap as people think. Building all the necessary facilities, paying for executioners(these folks rack huge bucks), all the extra guards and staff, paying for inmates on the death row(average stay in some places is 10 years, I heard), paying for all the ultra-tech that's meant to minimize the chance of false conviction, paying for all the beefed-up security to deal with people who got nothing to lose by escaping... It all adds up, especially for a country or state that didn't do death penalty before.

Offline OldSchoolGamer

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #19 on: May 05, 2008, 02:22:27 AM »
And here';s the story of some scumbag who shot the unborn children a bank carrier was carrying.

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2008/04/25/national/main4047144.shtml?

I'm sure the lefties wiill boil up out of the woodwork to try and get the guy off, it wasn't his fault, the devil made him do it, blah blah blAH.

mY TAKE on it is that if th criminal is big enough and bad enough to blast two babies to death in their mothers' womb, don't insult this big bad killer by claiming the electric chair of the noose or the firing squad are too tough.  Nonsense!  These killers can take the heat.  If they big and bad enough mothafuckers to kill unborn kids, they;re man enough to inhale that poison gas, or take the lethal dose, or hang by the neck until death.

Offline Elvi

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #20 on: May 05, 2008, 04:57:07 AM »
I quote from the article Ty posted:

Quote
Authorities and the family had said the bullets had not hit the twins.

But complications had set in, and one twin was born dead and the other died after birth, said Marion County's chief deputy coroner, Alfarena Ballew.

I'm not defending this person, what he did or how the mother and father feel about this.
However, I will comment upon what you yourself said Ty.

First off:

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if th criminal is big enough and bad enough to blast two babies to death in their mothers' womb,


Totally inaccurate isn't it?
There is no doubt in my mind that this persons actions are either wholly or partially to blame for the death of those children, however, it does yourself  and your argument no good at all, to give a link and then twist it in such an emotive way, simply to make your point.

Secondly:

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I'm sure the lefties wiill boil up out of the woodwork to try and get the guy off, it wasn't his fault, the devil made him do it, blah blah blAH.

Does the fact that people are left wing, mean that they feel that people should not be punished and held responsible for what they have done?
 

Offline Celestial Goblin

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #21 on: May 05, 2008, 09:25:49 AM »
It's possible to morally believe a certain person deserves to be killed and still disagree with death penatly being law because costs(not just in terms of money of course) are too great.

Comparison: I definitely think it would be morally ok for some people to be punched in the face. I oppose any legislation that would let the state sentence someone to being punched in the face because of all the problems it would create.

Offline kongming

Re: The Death Penelty. . .
« Reply #22 on: May 05, 2008, 09:33:10 AM »
Watching an old episode of House also caused me to think of another issue: where do you draw the line, as far as mitigating circumstances go? The more severe the punishment, the more difference that line makes.

For instance, if James Idontthinkican goes out there and shoots seven people, killing them, and gives no explanation at all, or perhaps "it was fun" or "they had bad hair" or "they voted labour", and is considered to be sound of mind despite this, then plenty of people are going to say "Kill him!"

Fine. Now let's say that in each of those cases he was attacked and defending himself (and even there, there's the issue of "perhaps he provoked the attack" or maybe "he responded with lethal force when *someone* who isn't him deems that force to be excessive"). Or maybe being blackmailed? He had evidence beyond reasonable doubt that if he didn't do that, his own family would be killed via boiling or some other horrific way.

Still not good enough? Fine. He suffered from a temporary condition that caused a big enough problem with judgement that killing them was, at that time but no longer, considered acceptable within his brain - perhaps he had just walked out of surgery, and the effects of the medicine affected his brain. Or maybe he had just started a medication, and it caused those effects. Or he suffered a head injury which caused delusions, aggressive behaviour and a shift in personality and loss of self control, all temporary. Maybe a cancer formed near his adrenal gland, kicking it into overdrive, and a tumour caused a temporary mental disorder.

Do we say "That's fine - it wasn't his fault that he was in a situation where his brain told him it was the right thing to do, and he isn't a threat any longer. He should live"?

How about "he was giving up (alcohol/cigarettes/caffeine/the illicit substance of your choice) and suffering the peak of withdrawal"? Or "he was drunk/off his face on cocaine"? Suddenly, it's because of his own actions that his judgement was impaired. What then? Do we say "Well it's your own fault, take responsibility"? If so, we must consider that he could have been drugged without knowledge/consent - thus someone else triggering the effect within him (and in the case of withdrawal, the only way he could have prevented it, having been drugged, would be to continue taking the drug).

Now how about permanent insanity. Does the fact that Mr. Idontthinkican will never likely recover and be "normal" (where normal means "Not finding it acceptable to kill people") change this? It isn't completely his fault, but by the same token, he will always be a threat. Should he perhaps merely be pardoned due to the circumstances, but kept in a high security mental institution, heavily drugged?

One last one. Let's say he didn't shoot them. Let's say Mr. Idontthinkican pushed a button, leading to a release of a Zykon-B tablet into a small dish of acid, causing cyanogen to fill a small gas chamber, killing them. Or he pushed a button which activated an electric chair. Or a lethal injection. Now let's say he did that because the government paid him a lot of money to do so. His victims did nothing against him, he simply murdered these people in a detached "Nothing personal, mate, I just want a new car." sort of way because the government decided on it.

If the line has at any point been drawn and you decided "In this case, he shouldn't be killed, in this case he should." then I imagine there is no way he could be on the "I live!" side. What do we do? Do executioners end up on death row for their murders? It's not even that strange - the reason no-one was brought to trial for the Gulag system in Sovjet Russia, with their prison camps, is essentially that yesterday's jailer is tomorrow's inmate; those who committed the atrocities soon enough found themselves suffering those same atrocities within the camps. Do we do that? Or are you seriously telling me that you trust the state enough to grant someone the power to say "You can murder some people, and I'll pardon you for it."? If you believe that, then it isn't Mr. Idontthinkican who's sanity is in question here, it's yours.

Most of these issues still remain if you are merely fining them, putting them in prison, tarring and feathering, beating them or making them scrub graffiti off walls, however they are not as important. But in this case, another life - another murder - hangs in the balance, based on where the line is drawn. And there is no real, living person who I think should draw that line.

Celestial: I agree there. It is possible to believe both of those things as separate matters.