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I'm for it, not so much as an eye for an eye thing, but why should someone who took another's life live, albeit in a 8'x8' cell, with cable tv, 3 hot meals a day and have many recreational activities, when the victim cannot enjoy their life? Just be damn sure, beyond beyond a shadow of a doubt! Not sure what you mean about other governments but have read they will not allow extradition if the death penalty is involved. At least we don't have a guillotine!
Beyond a shadow of a doubt
The present test is "beyong a reasonable doubt". But there are cases in which a person has been convicted "beyond a reasonable doubt" only to be found innocent, sometimes before he is executed. so that he hasn't lost his life but only a number of years of it sometimes forty or so.
Not for it but if we are going to do it...
Only for the reasons that ...
1. people have been found to be innocent after they are killed by the state.
2. it does not save money. studies I've seen indicate that it costs millions of dollars more (court costs, special security details, equipment, etc) to execute someone rather than house them for life.
3. It doesn't work for the stated purpose of deterrence. Studies indicate that the fear of being caught is a far greater deterrence because no one who commits a crime worries about being executed. It's asinine to imagine any criminal takes the time to examine the possible penalties before they precede to break the law. Besides, how many people actually know when an execution occurs until after it happens ?
The only way I could support such a policy would be...
1. if we drop the "deterrence" story and admit it is based on an "eye for an eye" philosophy.
2. if we start having public executions again. Indeed, if we expect to have execution act as a deterrent then I think every time someone is executed it should be televised on all TV stations from c-span and CBS to nickalodean and the Disney channel. Midnight would be a good time as the little kids could be sent to bed but it wouldn't be too late for the teenagers to see what can happen if they pursue a life of crime.
(are you starting to figure out why they call me grim ?)
(NT) im for it
(NT) It definately deters that one from repeating though
(NT) But what about the ones who were innocent ?
(NT) My other reply below addresses this for me.
(NT) Roger, are you saying you are for it for that reason?
All for it
Some criminals who commit certain crimes just don't deserve to remain alive. It's got nothing to do with deterrence or revenge.
But I wouldn't automatically extradite people to other countries. That needs careful review. For instance, Saudi Arabia has the death penalty for adultery. I don't think many in the US would want to extradite such ''criminals''.
BTW, the argument that it is more expensive to execute is phony. It's endless appeals and legal wrangling that lead to increased costs. Cut that back and no problem.
Here's some info on the PRO side:
I'm sure someone else will provide info for the other side.
by your own words Ed
"""It's endless appeals and legal wrangling that lead to increased costs."""
I didn't say why it's more expensive, I just said it's more expensive. We could be like China where as soon as sentence is decided your taken out to the edge of town and shot in the back of the head.
""''Some criminals who commit certain crimes just don't deserve to remain alive"""
I certainly agree but do you deny that mistakes have been made as far as some innocent people have been executed ?
""" It's got nothing to do with deterrence or revenge."""
Then how do you explain that some criminals "just don't deserve to remain alive" ? If not for revenge then why do you use the word "deserve". I'm not nitpicking you on this one... I don't understand why these criminals would "deserve" to die if not for revenge. If the rationale is getting rid of them to make the world safer then doesn't locking them up for life achieve the same thing ?
You don't like my idea of public executions ? I could live with it. As a matter of fact I think it's hypocritical for the state to kill prisoners without having the people there to see what our laws being carried out.
What's the connection?
Between some people not deserving to live and revenge? I am not trying to "get back" at them, just saying the world would be much better off without them. If you dispose of an old car are you seeking revenge on it or merely disposing of something that is not needed?
They don't deserve to be living and breathing because life is a reward in itself. Why should they be rewarded or kept around? It's not a matter of keeping the world safer, though that would be a good side effect.
Sure, mistakes have been made. We need to be more careful.
I can't see any value at all in public executions. What's the point? Some kind of weird thrill? There have always been witnesses at executions, so your point about seeing that the law is carried out is already satisfied.
not a wierd thrill
just a real life demonstration of what our public policy really achieves.
A soldier will stand and say it is easy for a politician to start a war when they never personally experienced the reality of combat.
The people in our culture today are insulated from the realities of day to day life. We take for granted a plentiful supply of beef but how many of us ever butchered a cow ? We talk glibly about the war in Iraq but most of us would not carry out ourselves, the policies we argue for. Some will stand and talk about how god disdains homosexuals but how many of us will volunteer to work with aids patients even though Jesus ministered to the sick?
I'm not pointing any fingers here. I'm just saying that in order for our society to have more insight into just what we ask our government to do for us, we need to be witness to our mandate carried out. No comment either way on this "for instance" but Governor "Ahhhhnold" is facing just this issue right now as he has to decide whether to carry out an execution or not. Would we have as many executions if part of the protocol was to call on a citizen (just like jury duty) to be the one to push the button that injects the drugs ? I am saying we all need to be there to see the order carried out because the act is being done in our name.
If some one is gonna shoot Old Yeller it ought to be us.
Makes sense to me but others may think differently.
Okay, Doesn't sound rational to me.
(chuckle) nothing I guess. ;)
I was in social services for 8 years and the most common thing I heard from bystanders was "Someone oughta do something".
I just have a pet peeve about people not taking responsibility for the world around them... whether it was a neighbor who went off the deep end for years while someone watched... to what our government does with the power we give them. My point of view ? Voting isn't enough. You roll up your sleeves and do your own dirty work. I'm not in favor of vigilantes but the guy who shot the intruder with the baseball bat ? He knows. Every time a prisoner is executed ? We are responsible. All I'm saying is the public should be exposed to the realities of their mandate when it comes to the death penalty. It's easy to say "whoops we made a mistake" when we find out an innocent was put to death but it's not so easy if we saw that person killed in the first place.
I will now go burn my soapbox...
Watching the spectacle of an execution...
is not "responsibility", more like its opposite.
Anyway, enough. I doubt this conversation has a future.
ole yeller was out of pity/mercy
i would suggest that a manson or mcveigh don't deserve such....(pity or mercy that is, i would shoot the sob's tomorrow)
If anyone deserved it
McVeigh did and I do not doubt that there would be a line of people waiting to volunteer. He was probably shocked (having read the Turner Diaries) that no great uprising occurred with his act but then again he probably didn't have much grasp on reality anyway.
Robert Heinlein argued in his book "starship troopers" that to execute an insane man was the right thing to do (in this case a child kidnapper, rapist, and murderer) because if the insane man was nursed back to health he could not have lived with the reality of what he had done. Interesting viewpoint considering some of the things he later wrote.
whether a person should live or die? Twelve men randomly chosen from a particular location? Opinons will differ greatly; whose opinion should prevail? There is not such thing as "he should die", but only "in my opinion he should die".
(NT) The word 'deserve' speaks to justice, not revenge.
Revenge would be along the lines of....
....sentencing them to watch Celine Dion videos 24/7 for the rest of their lives. They'd be begging for the needle within hours.
cruel and unusual would be
a nonstop loop of Yoko Ono's warblings.
As an appreciator....
....of Yoko's impact on subsequent artists (notably 80s artists like the B-52s, who cite her as their biggest influence) and someone who generally appreciates people who push the envelope, I must respectfully disagree, but I also recognize that she isn't for everyone.
I think there may be Constitutional protection against my Celine Dion idea though. Probably Cher too.
well you sucked all the fun
How often do you slap a Yoko platter on the turntable and drop the needle? I have to admit there was a (brief) period when I was weirdly fascinated, but I got over it. As torture it would surely be choice even for a fan.
Don't Worry Kyoko (Mummy's Only Looking for Her Hand in the Snow)
With a 3 year old in the house....
.....I rarely get to listen to any of my music. I throw some of her stuff on from time to time, and Don't Worry Kyoko is one of her best pieces IMO. (The B-52s covered it on one of their albums though I have not heard their version.)
There's an album called Every Man Has a Woman from around 1984 or so, that features other artists doing Yoko's songs. Rosanne Cash, Harry Nilsson, Elvis Costello and Roberta Flack are among the artists on it. It's worth a listen.
More recently Yoko became the oldest artist ever to have a hit on the Dance charts when Walking on Thin Ice was reissued.
For most of the reasons Grim listed, plus my own personal feeling that life without parole would be a worse punishment. If I was convicted of a capital crime and was offered the choice between a quick, relatively painless death and spending the rest of my life as someone's b*tch, I'd choose option A.
Saving someone's life
I do think that the idea of saving someone's life by letting them spend it in prison sounds a little oxymoronic.
(NT) YES and no(small no)
My general response to this is
''sentenced less and carried out more.''
I want it on the books. I might personally reserve it for those caught directly in commission of murder, particularly those who commit multiple murders/shootings. And for those that when caught, tried, and convicted appear to be definately unremorseful, that are proud of their acts, and continue to justify them.
There are other crimes that I'd like to see the death penality, but that is a desire for revenge I guess. Like on the news recently here, a man convicted of sexual assult of preteen children. Or assults then murder to cover up the assault.
THe sad truth is there have been wrongful convictions, so even when I'm personally convinced someone is guilty, the death penality is problematic unless the person is apprehended directly in the act, or identified by eyewitnesses THAT ALREADY KNEW HIM.
The reason I specify that indentifying eyewitness must have previously know the assailant for the death penality is that even with the best intentions and conviction, people have been wrong. However, someone they knew and saw regularly they can be more sure ''without a shadow of a doubt'' of who they saw.
When convicted under these conditions, I'd like to see a shorter appeal process and time to sentence execution. It's probably best that at least one review by a higher level court is done, but endless hearings and appeals wouldn't be necessary if the standard of proof for death penality sentencing was higher than normal already.
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(NT) good points all.
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