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stratosphere
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This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 10:17 am

If there was ever a reason to invoke the death penalty it should be for these two bastards who killed this beautiful little girl.

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flymia
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 10:37 am

Agree with you 100%.
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ZakHH
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 11:51 am



Quoting Stratosphere (Thread starter):
This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Not that I would have much pity for these individuals, but what good would the death penalty do here, apart from feeding your obvious (and even somewhat understandable) hunger for revenge?

Would it revive the girl? Apparently not. Would it stop others from commiting such crimes that are beyond our rational understanding? Again, no.

It's hard to argue against the death penalty on such a specific case. There seems to be little doubt about the facts, and the crime is one of the most heinous one could think of. Commiting it in a country that, as a matter of fact, makes use of the death penalty leaves no room for sympathy with the culprits.

But your thread title implies that you are looking for a general justification for the death penalty, and I am afraid this specific case will not be enough for that. You will probably need more than one reason.

Please allow me one general question, that has nothing to do with this specific case: what would you define as the most heinous crime one could commit without deserving the death penalty?
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falstaff
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 12:38 pm



Quoting Stratosphere (Thread starter):
If there was ever a reason to invoke the death penalty it should be for these two bastards who killed this beautiful little girl.

Another deserving candidate would be the bastard who raped and killed a nine day old (yes thats right) girl in metro Detroit the other day.
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stratosphere
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 12:58 pm



Quoting ZakHH (Reply 2):
Please allow me one general question, that has nothing to do with this specific case: what would you define as the most heinous crime one could commit without deserving the death penalty?

Actually I will. The Scott Peterson case comes to mind. Even though there is no doubt in my mind that he did it. I really don't think it should be applied in a circumstantial evidence case. I do think it needs to be applied to the obvious like John Wayne Gacy, Ted Bundy and the like where we are spending good tax money keeping these vermin alive with unrefutable evidence against them
 
deskflier
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:04 pm



Quoting Stratosphere (Reply 4):
we are spending good tax money keeping these vermin alive with unrefutable evidence against them

There was a study carried out in the late 1990s that showed that lifers actually cost the taxpayers less than those on Death Row. This because those convicted to die made a lot of appeals to have the sentence converted to life imprisonment, or even revoked. Often with lawyers who were paid by taxpayers dollars, at least the DAs and Judges are on a public payroll. At the same time, the lifers just settled in their cells and didn't cost much more than food and shelter.

Another thought on this: Suppose that the Boys in Blue catch the wrong person and the DA gets him convicted. If you execute him it would be really really hard to compensate for the slip-up once it is revealed.
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Rara
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:07 pm



Quoting ZakHH (Reply 2):
(and even somewhat understandable) hunger for revenge

That's the big question, isn't it? If the level of seriousness of an offense is the ultimate argument for death penalty, then the arguments against it can't have been too strong in the first place.

I see it like that: Is "wish for revenge" part of the reason for punishment? If yes -> death penalty is justified, if not -> not justified.
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NIKV69
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:11 pm



Quoting Stratosphere (Reply 4):
Ted Bundy

I remember someone at Ted's execution had a sign that read "Save electricty, use a rope!"

Look at those two people. I see nothing but pure evil. Especially the guy. Would be better to exterminate them. Throwing the baby across a room? Wtf?
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stratosphere
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:25 pm



Quoting Deskflier (Reply 5):
There was a study carried out in the late 1990s that showed that lifers actually cost the taxpayers less than those on Death Row. This because those convicted to die made a lot of appeals to have the sentence converted to life

Actually you are very correct. That is something that would have to change also. That is the reason the death penalty seems not to be a deterrent because it is often 15-20 yrs before it is carried out and the crime long forgotten. Like I said I do not approve of it in circumstantial cases. In cases where there is overwhelming evidence to the contrary they should get the ultimate penalty otherwise life in prison w/no parole. I have actually toned down my zealousness of the death penalty because I have seen corrupt prosecutors withhold evidence in order to make a case even if they know the accused is innocent. But when I read cases like this one it makes my blood boil. I guess if it were up to me I would execute all animal abusers also because like children animals are innocent and at the mercy of adults to care for them.
 
ZakHH
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:27 pm



Quoting Stratosphere (Reply 4):

You are referring to specific incidents. Let us speak in general. What would be the worst crime you could think of, that would not justify the death penalty?

Quoting Rara (Reply 6):
I see it like that: Is "wish for revenge" part of the reason for punishment?

How would you determine that? Especially, how would you rule it out?

Quoting NIKV69 (Reply 7):
Would be better to exterminate them.

Again - no intention to defend these individuals. Still - exactly what would be better once you have exterminated them?
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ORFflyer
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:28 pm



Quoting ZakHH (Reply 2):
Not that I would have much pity for these individuals, but what good would the death penalty do here, apart from feeding your obvious (and even somewhat understandable) hunger for revenge?

Or hunger for justice perhaps?

Quoting ZakHH (Reply 2):
Would it stop others from commiting such crimes that are beyond our rational understanding? Again, no.

That's a hypothetical question that cannot be answered with anything but an opinion - of which mine is it will certainly help.

Quoting ZakHH (Reply 2):
what would you define as the most heinous crime one could commit without deserving the death penalty?

You didn't ask me, but I'll offer my answer. IMO, none. If the crime is heinous by definition, the death penalty is warranted.
 
Klaus
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:32 pm

Killing is simply wrong. When the state deliberately kills people, the moral case against murder is undermined, especially since at least some of the convicts are innocent in any legal system.

Revenge is a human impulse, but there's a reason why lynching can't be the basis of any civilized legal system.
 
stratosphere
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:34 pm



Quoting ZakHH (Reply 9):
You are referring to specific incidents. Let us speak in general. What would be the worst crime you could think of, that would not justify the death penalty?

Ok crossing a picket line would be one but it would be a close call.
 
Klaus
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:36 pm



Quoting ORFflyer (Reply 10):
If the crime is heinous by definition, the death penalty is warranted.

That might be debatable in a legal system which was always 100% correct. Do you have that?  eyebrow 
 
KROC
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:41 pm



Quoting ZakHH (Reply 2):
Not that I would have much pity for these individuals, but what good would the death penalty do here, apart from feeding your obvious (and even somewhat understandable) hunger for revenge?

Would it revive the girl? Apparently not. Would it stop others from commiting such crimes that are beyond our rational understanding? Again, no.

No, killing the criminals in this case wouldn't bring back the little girl, but they took the right to life away from a 2 year old girl. Why on earth should their right to their own life remain? They committed a horrible crime. They don't deserve to spend the rest of their life in jail getting 3 meals a day, free education and all that other crap. They should receive tthe same sentance they handed down to a two year old girl.

Quoting Deskflier (Reply 5):
There was a study carried out in the late 1990s that showed that lifers actually cost the taxpayers less than those on Death Row. This because those convicted to die made a lot of appeals to have the sentence converted to life imprisonment, or even revoked. Often with lawyers who were paid by taxpayers dollars, at least the DAs and Judges are on a public payroll. At the same time, the lifers just settled in their cells and didn't cost much more than food and shelter.

This is why the process needs to be changes. Streamline it. Trial, appeal, still guilty dead within 30 days. I think its pathetic that tax dollars have to be used to keep say the Green River Killer alive even though he killed over 50 people. At that point he was caught, he gets his little trial then is exicuted point blank. How can anyone say that a serial killer has a right to life when they took that right away from their victims after they abused them, tortured them, raped them etc.

Quoting Klaus (Reply 11):
Killing is simply wrong. When the state deliberately kills people, the moral case against murder is undermined, especially since at least some of the convicts are innocent in any legal system.

Revenge is a human impulse, but there's a reason why lynching can't be the basis of any civilized legal system.

If killing is so wrong, what is your plan for people who kill others Especially multiple victims? Make sure they are safe in jail with TV, radio, 3 meals, exercise, a roof etc. until they die? Please.
 
ZakHH
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:46 pm



Quoting ORFflyer (Reply 10):
Or hunger for justice perhaps?

How do you define justice, then?

Quoting ORFflyer (Reply 10):
That's a hypothetical question that cannot be answered with anything but an opinion - of which mine is it will certainly help.

Is it hypothetical? Your country does (partially) execute the death penalty, does it? Yet I see these crimes still happen, and statistics (yes, I know) do not imply that the overall situation is so much better in areas where the DP is executed.

If DP would help against such crimes, you were implying that such individuals act rationally when performing their actions. Because only if they would act rationally, they would be able to consider dropping their actions because of the fear of possible consequences.

Do you really think these 2 individuals have spent a single thought on the consequences of their actions?
If the answer is "no", then deterrence is not an argument here.
If the answer is "yes", you would probably have to explain yourself.

Quoting ORFflyer (Reply 10):
You didn't ask me, but I'll offer my answer. IMO, none. If the crime is heinous by definition, the death penalty is warranted.

Point taken - I chose bad words indeed. There is probably no such thing as a "bit heinous crime". What I wanted to say is: what is the worst thing a human could do without deserving the death penalty?
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N231YE
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:54 pm

This girl was originally from a suburb of Cleveland, where I am from. Its unfortunate that there was a story on the news last week about this girl possibly being the same one missing from a Cleveland couple...now we know, it is true.

This absolutely fills me with rage; they did this to an innocent child (!)

Quote:
The girl was beaten with leather belts, had her head held underwater in a bathtub and then was thrown across a room, her head slamming into a tile floor, Trenor said in the document. She said they kept the body in a storage shed for one to two months before they put it in a plastic bin and dumped it into Galveston Bay.

 
Klaus
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:55 pm



Quoting KROC (Reply 14):
This is why the process needs to be changes. Streamline it. Trial, appeal, still guilty dead within 30 days.

Otherwise known as kangaroo courts without due process. Ask any banana republic or dictatorship about how it's done. I'm sure they'll be glad to help you out.

Justice? Who needs that? If you were innocent, why are you indicted?  crazy 

Quoting KROC (Reply 14):
If killing is so wrong, what is your plan for people who kill others Especially multiple victims?

And our only proposal would be that the state should basically sink to the same level, including killing the odd innocent as "collateral damage"?

Sorry, but civilization, due process and human rights are simply indivisible. The alternatives have all been tried and found severely lacking.
 
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yowza
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:55 pm

Put the mother in solitary confinement for life with no human contact and show her pictures of the daughter she killed every day. THAT is better than the death penalty for this case.

YOWza
 
ZakHH
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 2:56 pm

Quoting KROC (Reply 14):
Why on earth should their right to their own life remain?

Very good point, KROC.
It may be surprising, but morally, I agree with you here. In my eyes, they have indeed forfeited their right to live.

But then another question remains: who gave you and me the right to execute somebody who, in our eyes, has forfeited his right to live?

Quoting KROC (Reply 14):
They should receive tthe same sentance they handed down to a two year old girl.

That would qualify pretty much as "revenge" for me. Plus, this would consequently mean that you would have to throw them against walls and beat them to death. Why would they deserve a quick and painless death when they have brought this innocent girl so much pain?

Edit: I realize this question sounds cynical. Rest assured it's not intended to be.

Quoting KROC (Reply 14):
Make sure they are safe in jail with TV, radio, 3 meals, exercise, a roof etc. until they die? Please.

I think it's safe to guess that you've never been imprisoned. Neither have I, but I worked in a prison clinic for some time. Rest assured it's not so cosy in there as many would think.

But the question on how to design a penal system is a good one indeed, and there is many aspects to it. I'm not happy with every of them, either.

Still, for me, imprisonment has one big advantage over the DP: it can be corrected.

[Edited 2007-11-27 06:59:15]
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Klaus
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 3:00 pm



Quoting ZakHH (Reply 19):
Still, for me, imprisonment has one big advantage over the DP: it can be corrected.

Exactly. An uncorrectable penalty by necessity requires an infallible justice system.
 
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Aaron747
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 3:02 pm



Quoting Klaus (Reply 13):
That might be debatable in a legal system which was always 100% correct. Do you have that?

No, and nobody does. But that doesn't mean we should keep people around who throw babies across rooms like ragdolls. Open and shut, heinous, 100% DNA match cases should have only one result: permanent removal from society and this life.
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Klaus
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 3:11 pm



Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 21):
No, and nobody does. But that doesn't mean we should keep people around who throw babies across rooms like ragdolls.

Throwing them in jail is not "keeping them around" either.

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 21):
100% DNA match cases should have only one result: permanent removal from society and this life.

There are no "100% DNA match cases". The reliability of DNA testing can be relatively high, but it is never 100%, even if the lab is working properly (which is often not the case).

It can be enough for life imprisonment (which can be corrected), but it is most definitely not sufficient for an uncorrectable penalty such as death and can never be.

From a layman's point of view it may look that way, but even perfect testing (which is not what we have today) would not allow that due to fundamental limitations.
 
mia
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 3:15 pm

I think it is more of an indication that we need literacy and competency tests in order to allow people to have children.
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Aaron747
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 3:24 pm



Quoting Klaus (Reply 22):
From a layman's point of view it may look that way, but even perfect testing (which is not what we have today) would not allow that due to fundamental limitations.

Irrelevant. So long as there is enough reliability to pass Constitutional muster, and there is accompanying evidence that is not circumstantial in nature, that's good enough for me.

I have a fifteen month-old, so there's my admitted bias. So be it.
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stratosphere
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 3:28 pm



Quoting Klaus (Reply 22):
There are no "100% DNA match cases". The reliability of DNA testing can be relatively high, but it is never 100%, even if the lab is working properly (which is often not the case).

No but 99.9 percent is pretty close. DNA is as close to perfect as we will see in our lifetime. But again an arguement can be made as to if the technician made a mistake which is why it needs to be backed up by another independant lab. I would convict purely on DNA if it was backed up by other labs and execute accordingly. Always remember even if a murderer was sentenced to life without parole there has been escapes in the past. Doesn't happen often but is has happened and there have been murderers who were paroled after many years behind bars only to commit another murder. I guess this will always be in debate.
 
Dougloid
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 3:32 pm



Quoting Stratosphere (Thread starter):
If there was ever a reason to invoke the death penalty it should be for these two bastards who killed this beautiful little girl.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21977817/

It's Texas. There's a pretty good chance you'll get your wish.

Quoting Deskflier (Reply 5):
There was a study carried out in the late 1990s that showed that lifers actually cost the taxpayers less than those on Death Row. This because those convicted to die made a lot of appeals to have the sentence converted to life imprisonment, or even revoked. Often with lawyers who were paid by taxpayers dollars, at least the DAs and Judges are on a public payroll. At the same time, the lifers just settled in their cells and didn't cost much more than food and shelter.

It's best not to base objections ot the death penalty on dollars. That just asks people to come up with low cost solutions.

The reason is that a death sentence automatically invokes the Federal appeals process. So, in California you have about 600 people on death row but only a handful of executions since the 1970s.

However, if there's no death penalty, there are no expensive federal appeals. Here, people get their appeal as of right, it's usually summarily rejected and they stay in prison until they die.

In the winter of 1992, Joseph White, an 18 year old thug, walked into the Drake Diner about ten blocks from here, pulled out a LAR Grizzly .44 magnum pistol he'd stolen, announced a stickup, got the money and then proceeded to kill the manager and a server. The pistol ejected the spent rounds onto the floor.

LAR Grizzly pistols are rather unique, they're a M1911 adapted to fire the rimmed .44 magnum cartridge, and only a few hundred were made. Handloaders like them.

Joseph White's girlfriend's father had one. It disappeared from his house about the time White paid a visit. Dad was a handloader with plenty of fired brass exemplars. A couple casings were found in back of White's crib where he'd test fired the Grizzly.

White had his trial, sentence and appeal within nine months or so of when he was nabbed.

He has since been buried alive in Fort Madison. That's a death sentence on the installment plan.

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ORFflyer
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 3:34 pm



Quoting Klaus (Reply 13):
That might be debatable in a legal system which was always 100% correct. Do you have that?  

Of course not, and as was mentioned, who does?

Quoting ZakHH (Reply 15):
How do you define justice, then?

It's defined by laws, and the penalties for breaking those laws. I don't agree with all of them, and neither do you, or anyone I suppose, but it's what we have.

Quoting ZakHH (Reply 15):
Yet I see these crimes still happen, and statistics (yes, I know) do not imply that the overall situation is so much better in areas where the DP is executed.

I don't think any country will ever be completely rid of crime, regardless of the penalties. But I believe that the DP is a deterring factor, AND a just punishment for certain crimes.

Quoting ZakHH (Reply 15):
Do you really think these 2 individuals have spent a single thought on the consequences of their actions?
If the answer is "no", then deterrence is not an argument here.
If the answer is "yes", you would probably have to explain yourself.

These two - no. But you or I or anyone else can determine who doesn't commit a crime based on their thinking of the ramifications. I know damn well I think about "what if" from time to time, and that works enough for me......

Quoting ZakHH (Reply 15):
What I wanted to say is: what is the worst thing a human could do without deserving the death penalty?

Tough question to answer. I'd call it "situational dependant" But I know that doesn't really answer your question.
 
stratosphere
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 3:55 pm

Is it me or does most of the death penalty opponents on this board are from Germany? Not to start anything I love Germany and had a blast when I was there. Just curious I guess. Anyway I respect all viewpoints here and your opinions are valid. Actually as a human you can't help but think this is wrong. I know I felt this way when Karla Faye Tucker was executed in Texas. For those who don't know about this case it involved a drug robbery where the man and woman were killed with a pickax and Karla had found the lord (all murderers find Jesus in jail). But I actually thought she was sincere and it seemed to me to be wrong. Again this was because it was MANY years after the crime that she was going to meet her maker and the crime was not fresh in our minds. She was transformed or so it appeared into a mild mannered christian woman but George Bush our now president then was Governor of Texas allowed the execution to proceed. This I have to say I would have reversed the sentence to life with no parole only because she to me didn't seem like she could never be a public threat again and truly had remorse but maybe I felt this way because she was a woman. But her crime was so bad Bush wasn't going intervene because he knew this crime screamed out for a death penalty sentence.
 
dl021
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 4:12 pm



Quoting ZakHH (Reply 2):
what good would the death penalty do here, apart from feeding your obvious (and even somewhat understandable) hunger for revenge?

I skipped everything after this.

Death would end the ability of these two to harm anyone else.

Death would end society's expense of food and shelter for them.

Death would serve notice to others that there is a terminal penalty for murder.

Quoting Klaus (Reply 22):

Throwing them in jail is not "keeping them around" either.

It is "keeping them around" compared to terminating their existence.

Quoting Klaus (Reply 22):
From a layman's point of view it may look that way, but even perfect testing (which is not what we have today) would not allow that due to fundamental limitations.

And you're of course not a layman in this matter?
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Toast
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 4:20 pm



Quoting Stratosphere (Reply 28):
Is it me or does most of the death penalty opponents on this board are from Germany?

No, that's just how Krauts work - spending their time on a.net.  duck 

On this board or outside it, here's some perspective as to which nations are against the DP.

ALBANIA, ANDORRA, ANGOLA, ARMENIA, AUSTRALIA, AUSTRIA, AZERBAIJAN, BELGIUM, BHUTAN, BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA, BULGARIA, CAMBODIA, CANADA, CAPE VERDE, COLOMBIA, COSTA RICA, COTE D'IVOIRE, CROATIA, CYPRUS, CZECH REPUBLIC, DENMARK, DJIBOUTI, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC, ECUADOR, ESTONIA, FINLAND, FRANCE, GEORGIA, GERMANY, GREECE, GUINEA-BISSAU, HAITI, HONDURAS, HUNGARY, ICELAND, IRELAND, ITALY, KIRIBATI, LIBERIA, LIECHTENSTEIN, LITHUANIA, LUXEMBOURG, MACEDONIA (former Yugoslav Republic), MALTA, MARSHALL ISLANDS, MAURITIUS, MEXICO, MICRONESIA (Federated States), MOLDOVA, MONACO, MONTENEGRO, MOZAMBIQUE, NAMIBIA, NEPAL, NETHERLANDS, NEW ZEALAND, NICARAGUA, NIUE, NORWAY, PALAU, PANAMA, PARAGUAY, PHILIPPINES, POLAND, PORTUGAL, ROMANIA, RWANDA, SAMOA, SAN MARINO, SAO TOME AND PRINCIPE, SENEGAL, SERBIA, SEYCHELLES, SLOVAKIA, SLOVENIA, SOLOMON ISLANDS, SOUTH AFRICA, SPAIN, SWEDEN, SWITZERLAND, TIMOR-LESTE, TURKEY, TURKMENISTAN, TUVALU, UKRAINE, UNITED KINGDOM, URUGUAY, VANUATU, VATICAN CITY STATE, VENEZUELA, ARGENTINA, BOLIVIA, BRAZIL, CHILE, COOK ISLANDS, EL SALVADOR, FIJI, ISRAEL, KYRGYZSTAN, LATVIA, PERU, ARGENTINA, BOLIVIA, BRAZIL, CHILE, COOK ISLANDS, EL SALVADOR, FIJI, ISRAEL, KYRGYZSTAN, LATVIA, PERU.

In all of the above countries, DP is outlawed de jure or de facto, or only applied in theoretical exceptional cases.

Countries that still usurp the right to kill:

AFGHANISTAN, ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA, BAHAMAS, BAHRAIN, BANGLADESH, BARBADOS, BELARUS, BELIZE, BOTSWANA, BURUNDI, CAMEROON, CHAD, CHINA, COMOROS, CONGO (Democratic Republic), CUBA, DOMINICA, EGYPT, EQUATORIAL GUINEA, ETHIOPIA, GUATEMALA, GUINEA, GUYANA, INDIA, INDONESIA, IRAN, IRAQ, JAMAICA, JAPAN, JORDAN, KAZAKSTAN, KOREA (North), KOREA (South), KUWAIT, LEBANON, LESOTHO, LIBYA, MALAYSIA, MONGOLIA, NIGERIA, OMAN, PAKISTAN, PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY, QATAR, SAINT CHRISTOPHER & NEVIS, SAINT LUCIA, SAINT VINCENT & GRENADINES, SAUDI ARABIA, SIERRA LEONE, SINGAPORE, SOMALIA, SUDAN, SYRIA, TAIWAN, TAJIKISTAN, THAILAND, TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO, UGANDA, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, UZBEKISTAN, VIET NAM, YEMEN, ZIMBABWE.

So there you have 5 (that's five) "developed" countries (US, Japan, S. Korea, Taiwan, Singapore), several banana republics, and some of the world's worst dictatorships and theocracies. La creme de la creme.

The death penalty is outlawed in the entire European Union for all crimes. No country with the DP can be admitted into the Union. One of the noblest principles of the EU if you ask me.

This year alone, three more countries (Albania, Rwanda, and Kyrgyzstan) abolished the death penalty.

With every passing year, the US will find itself ever more isolated in this matter.
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jamincan
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 4:29 pm



Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 21):
No, and nobody does. But that doesn't mean we should keep people around who throw babies across rooms like ragdolls. Open and shut, heinous, 100% DNA match cases should have only one result: permanent removal from society and this life.

Presently the standard of proof for a criminal conviction is beyond all reasonable doubt. How can you have any greater proof? Also, you assume that the carriage of justice is fairly applied at all levels. There have been numerous examples in the past where police have fabricated or withheld evidence and coerced confessions, where lawyers have failed in their duty to provide adequate defence, or where witnesses have lied to or misled juries. Based on the evidence presented, the person may very well be guilty beyond all reasonable doubt; however, that doesn't deny their innocence. How would you feel if someone were wrongfully convicted, summarily executed, and then later found to be innocent? How would society right that injustice?
 
Arrow
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 4:30 pm



Quoting Deskflier (Reply 5):
Another thought on this: Suppose that the Boys in Blue catch the wrong person and the DA gets him convicted. If you execute him it would be really really hard to compensate for the slip-up once it is revealed.

And in this country there have been several very high profile examples of that, including a guy who was wrongly convicted of killing a little girl, and several others wrongly convicted of murders. Many of them spent a lot of time in jail before their convictions were overturned -- with the death penalty they wouldn't have survived.

Quoting Klaus (Reply 20):
Exactly. An uncorrectable penalty by necessity requires an infallible justice system.

 checkmark 

Quoting Stratosphere (Reply 28):
Is it me or does most of the death penalty opponents on this board are from Germany?

Not quite.
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Yellowstone
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 4:30 pm



Quoting DL021 (Reply 29):
Quoting Klaus (Reply 22):
From a layman's point of view it may look that way, but even perfect testing (which is not what we have today) would not allow that due to fundamental limitations.

And you're of course not a layman in this matter?

You have to admit, I think, that most people view DNA testing as practically infallible, which it isn't. It's highly accurate, but not perfect, due both to limitations inherent to the testing and to possible human error (e.g. mistaking one sample for another, accidental contamination, etc.). "Layman" here probably means someone with minimal knowledge of DNA testing; this ignorance can certainly be corrected by a bit of reading and Internet research.

Anyway, my position on the death penalty is nicely summed up by this quote from Tolkien: "Many that live deserve death. And some die that deserve life. Can you give it to them? Then be not too eager to deal out death in the name of justice, fearing for your own safety. Even the wise cannot see all ends." - Gandalf, The Two Towers
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dl021
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 4:32 pm



Quoting Yellowstone (Reply 33):
Then be not too eager to deal out death in the name of justice, fearing for your own safety

Which is not the same thing as saying that it should not be an option. Lewis was fairly clear in his muddlements....
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Klaus
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 4:34 pm



Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 24):
Irrelevant. So long as there is enough reliability to pass Constitutional muster, and there is accompanying evidence that is not circumstantial in nature, that's good enough for me.

On basis of those formal criteria there have still be numerous executions of innocent people.

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 24):
I have a fifteen month-old, so there's my admitted bias. So be it.

I understand your bias, but a justice system deserving its name just can't be operated like a lynch mob.

Quoting Stratosphere (Reply 25):
No but 99.9 percent is pretty close.

But still short of the mark. Hence my conclusion that killing convicts (who may or may not have committed the crime) remains morally indefensible.

Quoting Stratosphere (Reply 25):
DNA is as close to perfect as we will see in our lifetime.

No. Collection and processing of DNA evidence is still a huge weakness. The apparent certainty of DNA testing can be misleading - it tempts people to shove aside any other doubts, even justified ones. It is an excellent tool, but it still needs to be used properly and it still falls short of the perfection which would be required to justify even the consideration of capital punishment.

Quoting Stratosphere (Reply 25):
Always remember even if a murderer was sentenced to life without parole there has been escapes in the past.

And there have been numerous false convictions and executions. A society needs to decide whether it wants to pursue the rule of law and due process or fall back on convictions by accusation and populist lynching.

Emotions are important, but they are often deceptive and unreliable.

Quoting Dougloid (Reply 26):
It's Texas. There's a pretty good chance you'll get your wish.

Apparently the first black DA in Texas is pursuing a slightly different course:

New Prosecutor Revisits Justice in Dallas - washingtonpost.com

Quote:
Post-conviction DNA analysis in certain cases has been allowed in Texas since 2001. Since then, 354 people convicted in Dallas County -- most were in prison, but some were on parole or probation or were done with their sentences -- have asked for the DNA testing. The Dallas district attorney's office agreed to 19 requests; trial judges, who reviewed the district attorney's recommendations, ultimately granted the requests of 34 people.

That, said Watkins, tells him a "get a conviction at all costs" approach "utterly failed us."



Quoting ORFflyer (Reply 27):
But I believe that the DP is a deterring factor

No, that is obviously not the case in real life or the statistics would reflect that to be the case. They don't.

Quoting Stratosphere (Reply 28):
Is it me or does most of the death penalty opponents on this board are from Germany? Not to start anything I love Germany and had a blast when I was there. Just curious I guess.

No wonder: The last time we've had the death penalty it was under the nazi and/or communist dictatorships. For us it is forever tainted as an instrument of injustice with no possibility of correction, There are of course gradual differences, but the incorrigibility is a defect that simply cannot be healed.

Especially heinous crimes still let many germans wish death and damnation on the perpetrator's head, but there is still no real desire to introduce captal punishment again - even if our constitution didn't forbid it.
 
Yellowstone
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 4:36 pm



Quoting DL021 (Reply 34):
Which is not the same thing as saying that it should not be an option. Lewis was fairly clear in his muddlements....

I suppose you could interpret it that way. I guess it comes down to what you consider "too eager," and the book doesn't define that. To me, wanting to have the state kill anyone is being too eager.

One minor note - it's a J.R.R. Tolkien quote, not a C.S. Lewis one.
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Toast
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 4:43 pm



Quoting Klaus (Reply 35):
The last time we've had the death penalty it was under the nazi and/or communist dictatorships. For us it is forever tainted as an instrument of injustice with no possibility of correction

 checkmark  and that goes for most European countries as well, not only Germany.
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Klaus
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 4:45 pm



Quoting Yellowstone (Reply 33):
You have to admit, I think, that most people view DNA testing as practically infallible

Yeah, that was my whole point - and that is extremely dangerous especially in a jury system where one seemingly perfect DNA test can overshadow a whole bunch of questionable issues.

Quoting Yellowstone (Reply 33):
Anyway, my position on the death penalty is nicely summed up by this quote from Tolkien: "Many that live deserve death. And some die that deserve life. Can you give it to them? Then be not too eager to deal out death in the name of justice, fearing for your own safety. Even the wise cannot see all ends." - Gandalf, The Two Towers

Wise words. (But was that actually in the book exactly like that?)
 
ZakHH
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 5:04 pm



Quoting ORFflyer (Reply 27):
It's defined by laws, and the penalties for breaking those laws. I don't agree with all of them, and neither do you, or anyone I suppose, but it's what we have.

I would not agree that justice is necessarily defined by law. To the contrary, laws can cause great injustice. Justice for me is a moral aspect. Which again means that it is to some point an individual thing - what would be just to one person, could be unjust to another.

That is why I do not find it inappropriate to discuss whether the DP is just or not, and I'm glad to see the discussion not going completely out of bounds (yet  Wink ).

Quoting ORFflyer (Reply 27):
I know damn well I think about "what if" from time to time, and that works enough for me......

Sure - because you act rational. And you probably do not have to fight the urge to kill somebody just for the fun of it - at least I hope so. But that is not anywhere near the state of mind that is required to perform a senseless murder. And I do not believe that people who are in that state of mind really would think about the consequences.

And even if - I guess the outlook of spending the rest of my life in prison is not that much better than being sentenced to death.

Quoting ORFflyer (Reply 27):
Tough question to answer. I'd call it "situational dependant" But I know that doesn't really answer your question.

It was intended to be a tough question  Wink
What I intended to say is that it is almost impossible to draw a line. Meaning life and death will always depend on human perception under the DP, and human perception is well known to be far from perfect.

Quoting Stratosphere (Reply 28):
Is it me or does most of the death penalty opponents on this board are from Germany?

I know quite some folks here, who are against the DP while not being from Germany.  Smile

Quoting Stratosphere (Reply 28):
Actually as a human you can't help but think this is wrong. I know I felt this way when Karla Faye Tucker was executed in Texas. For those who don't know about this case it involved a drug robbery where the man and woman were killed with a pickax and Karla had found the lord (all murderers find Jesus in jail). But I actually thought she was sincere and it seemed to me to be wrong.

I find that interesting (honestly!). Why do you feel it is wrong to execute someone with a strong believe in God?

Quoting DL021 (Reply 29):
I skipped everything after this.

Which is a pity, as many interesting arguments and views were exchanged after it.

Quoting DL021 (Reply 29):
Death would end the ability of these two to harm anyone else.

So would a life in prison.

Quoting DL021 (Reply 29):
Death would end society's expense of food and shelter for them.

If they were executed right away. Which is apparently not the case, as discussed above.

Btw, is there any statistics about how many US deat row inmates actually died a natural death?
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Rara
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 5:04 pm



Quoting Klaus (Reply 38):

Wise words. (But was that actually in the book exactly like that?)

Exactly like that. When I read the book, those sentences immediately stood out to me.

Quoting Stratosphere (Reply 28):
Is it me or does most of the death penalty opponents on this board are from Germany?

If so, I'd find that quite reassuring.
Samson was a biblical tough guy, but his dad Samsonite was even more of a hard case.
 
Dougloid
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 5:05 pm



Quoting Stratosphere (Reply 28):
Is it me or does most of the death penalty opponents on this board are from Germany? Not to start anything I love Germany and had a blast when I was there. Just curious I guess. Anyway I respect all viewpoints here and your opinions are valid

You see, it's because they have so much experience at it. Which begs the question:

Are they really opposed to it or are they just tired of it?

Inquiring minds want to know.

Quoting Toast (Reply 30):
The death penalty is outlawed in the entire European Union for all crimes. No country with the DP can be admitted into the Union. One of the noblest principles of the EU if you ask me.

This year alone, three more countries (Albania, Rwanda, and Kyrgyzstan) abolished the death penalty.

With every passing year, the US will find itself ever more isolated in this matter.

Nonsense, my good fellow. Rubbish on all points.

You make two significant errors Mr. Toaster. One is of assuming that there's uniformity among the fifty states on the question, and the other is in thinking that progress is unending and always forward.

What is done in law, can be undone, if the desire is there. Don't make the mistake of concluding that progress is synonymous with improvement.

I believe that we had this discussion a while ago, When I informed you that Belgium had shot 250 people out of hand in the late 1940s, you more or less dismissed it as an excusable response ( a mere bagatelle, really) to nazi collaborators.

Here in the disUnited States (truth in advertising, y'know) there are thirteen states (and the district of columbia) that do not have the death penalty: Alaska, Hawaii, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia, Wisconsin.

In fact, the death penalty was done away with in 1964 here in Iowa, the last execution in Michigan was in 1830, the last execution in North Dakota was in 1930, and I could go on. You get the idea. That tells me that legally speaking, we're ahead of the EU in some important respects which you folks consistently fail to acknowledge and respect with your self righteous generalizations about "the americans this, the americans that" and so on.

The other main point you seem to consistently overlook on your side of the pond is that ours is a federal system of government. What that means, for the most part, is that the people who are affected by the application of law have a voice in the process through their legislatures, and they exercise this power regularly and effectively.

I do not subscribe to the death penalty as any sort of an effective remedy, and it seems that a significant number of my countrymen feel the same way.

But we're pretty much unanimous, I might say, in thinking that the people in any given state are the best judges of what they need and want in the way of law.

What that means is that the good people of Wisconsin are never going to dictate to the good people of Texas or Virginia whether they should or should not execute condemned criminals.

And the criminals in those states have been served ample warning, that some offenses are likely to result in a death sentence. They've been warned-perhaps you could ask them whether knowledge of the death penalty would have made a bit of difference to them at the time. I think the answer would be decidedly negative.

In doing that we honor an old established American principle that was enshrined on the Fugio cent, "mind your business" which is a polite way of saying to attend to your own affairs.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mind_your_own_business
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IADCA
Posts: 2218
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 5:13 pm



Quoting KROC (Reply 14):
This is why the process needs to be changes. Streamline it. Trial, appeal, still guilty dead within 30 days. I think its pathetic that tax dollars have to be used to keep say the Green River Killer alive even though he killed over 50 people. At that point he was caught, he gets his little trial then is exicuted point blank. How can anyone say that a serial killer has a right to life when they took that right away from their victims after they abused them, tortured them, raped them etc.

Part of the reason the appeals process is slow in death penalty cases is to allow popular anger to simmer down over the actual crimes and let the accused actually get a fair hearing. The problem with a lot of death penalty cases is that the crimes are so heinous that many juries would convict whoever is sitting in front of them just based on their anger over the crime. People can and do get railroaded by the system. Hell, it even almost happened in the Duke lacrosse case, which wasn't even a murder case. You need a slower appellate process to allow calm and rational deliberation of the actual defendant's culpability. Now, in the case of someone who's confessed like the Green River Killer (I believe, unless I'm confusing him with one of those other animals), it makes less sense, as an appeal of the conviction itself is out.

Quoting ZakHH (Reply 19):
That would qualify pretty much as "revenge" for me.

Well, retributive justice is recognized over here as a valid rationale for criminal punishment. It just isn't the only one. The problem isn't with revenge per se, but with a generalized societal rage being directed upon one individual without sufficient proof that that individual is actually culpable.

Quoting DL021 (Reply 29):

Death would serve notice to others that there is a terminal penalty for murder.

Circular argument much? The mere existence of a death penalty has already served them notice. Enforcing it in individual cases makes little difference.

Deterrance is a weak argument, mainly because there are essentially two types of people who kill intentionally. One is the "sudden heat of passion" cases, which depending on how reasonably provoked and other considerations, are either second-degree murder or manslaughter. The death penalty never applies in such cases, so it can't deter them. The other type is deliberative, cold-blooded murderers. Most of them either have such a specific vendetta against their single victim or are so sociopathic that nothing will stop them from killing, which is why they do it despite the presence of the death penalty. A second problem is that a killer who is rational enough to comprehend the death penalty and be rationally deterred by it is probably also lucid enough to avoid doing a crime in a way that will trigger it (as in, avoiding the aggravating factors that usually get juries to bump up 1st degree murder up to capital punishment).

One thing I've noticed with this argument is that there is really one central issue between death penalty advocates and opponents: whether the state should retributively kill people. All the other arguments (deterrance, notice, morality, etc) are just rationalizations around this central theme, on both sides of the aisle. I take no position either way; both sides have some valid arguments.
 
jamincan
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 5:13 pm



Quoting Stratosphere (Reply 25):
I would convict purely on DNA if it was backed up by other labs and execute accordingly.

I hope not. Have you heard of prosecutor's fallacy? By purely basing your conviction on DNA, I'm assuming the identification would have to go through a DNA registry; however, the likelihood of finding a match in a DNA registry is relatively high and doesn't reflect on the likelihood the suspect is guilty or innocent. Corroborating evidence narrows the likelihood of possible misidentification significantly.

Consider also cases like chimerism. While I don't believe it has come into play for a case involving a death sentence yet, I do believe that the case of Lydia Fairchild is relevant to the fallability of genetic identification.

Consider also the case of Dr. John Schneeberger who planted DNA evidence to disguise his role in the crime. In that case, the only effect was to let him remain free for far longer than he should have been.

I guess the point is that, although DNA evidence is useful, it's by no means the last word or only word and I sure as hell hope no one is convicted solely on it.
 
Klaus
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 5:21 pm



Quoting Rara (Reply 40):
Exactly like that. When I read the book, those sentences immediately stood out to me.

Okay, thanks. I wasn't sure because the last time I've read it has been longer ago than watching the movie.

Quoting Dougloid (Reply 41):
In fact, the death penalty was done away with in 1964 here in Iowa, the last execution in Michigan was in 1830, the last execution in North Dakota was in 1930, and I could go on. You get the idea. That tells me that legally speaking, we're ahead of the EU in some important respects which you folks consistently fail to acknowledge and respect with your self righteous generalizations about "the americans this, the americans that" and so on.

You should really do something about that chip on your shoulder. That kind of asymmetric strain can lead to back pain and worse...!  cool 

And please look up the definition of "ahead". At least in my book that means you haven't regressed behind the current state of affairs. Which the USA unfortunately have in many states. The criticism is obviously not aimed at those which haven't.

Quoting Dougloid (Reply 41):
The other main point you seem to consistently overlook on your side of the pond is that ours is a federal system of government.

How is allowing or forbidding the state to kill its citizens a matter that should be arbitrarily decided on the basis of regional populist election campaigns?
 
Toast
Posts: 1249
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 5:21 pm



Quoting Dougloid (Reply 41):
You make two significant errors Mr. Toaster. One is of assuming that there's uniformity among the fifty states on the question,

I know very well that not all US states have the DP.

Quoting Dougloid (Reply 41):
What is done in law, can be undone, if the desire is there.

Killing a person cannot be undone.

Quoting Dougloid (Reply 41):
Don't make the mistake of concluding that progress is synonymous with improvement.

I don't follow you... To me, progress=improvement.

Quoting Dougloid (Reply 41):
I believe that we had this discussion a while ago, When I informed you that Belgium had shot 250 people out of hand in the late 1940s, you more or less dismissed it as an excusable response ( a mere bagatelle, really) to nazi collaborators.

No, I never said it was excusable. But it was an exception, and it happened 60 years ago, when just about every country had the DP. The world has moved forward since and retentionist countries are an ever-shrinking minority.

Quoting Dougloid (Reply 41):
The other main point you seem to consistently overlook on your side of the pond is that ours is a federal system of government. What that means, for the most part, is that the people who are affected by the application of law have a voice in the process through their legislatures, and they exercise this power regularly and effectively.

Dougloid, please spare me... As if we poor oppressed Euros had no say in our laws...

Quoting Dougloid (Reply 41):
But we're pretty much unanimous, I might say, in thinking that the people in any given state are the best judges of what they need and want in the way of law.

Which IMO is a pity, because most people everywhere are unenlightened to say the least. If the majority of the world population - primitive imbeciles - got to decide each and every law, you'd very likely still have delightful things such as racial segregation in the US. Isn't that what most southerners wanted? The bad, evil federals did away with that, didn't they? As IMO they should do away with the DP now.

Quoting Dougloid (Reply 41):
In fact, the death penalty was done away with in 1964 here in Iowa

You like to quote that one, and I'd like to repeat that Iowa has my utmost respect. Being abolitionist, and the birthplace of Bill Bryson, means that Iowa can't be all bad.  Wink
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BHXFAOTIPYYC
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 5:53 pm



Quoting Stratosphere (Thread starter):
If there was ever a reason to invoke the death penalty it should be for these two bastards who killed this beautiful little girl.

No problem with that at all.

However, in the US the death penalty doesn't seem to act much as a deterant, it's more of a punishment. So my question is does it work better as a deterant in places like Singapore, and if so why? Not much of a drug problem there for example.

I just drove through town after a meeting and noticed someone had ramraided a TV shop. Reminded me in the last few years my office was broken into once, we've had 2 cars stolen (one recovered), and house robbed twice. So do I think cutting off some theiving bastard's hand might stop them doing it again? Yes I do. And if it doesn't, they'll have a hard time rowing a bloody boat, that's for sure.

We aren't more sofisticated in Europe when it comes to crime, we're too damn soft.
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Klaus
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 5:59 pm



Quoting BHXFAOTIPYYC (Reply 46):
We aren't more sofisticated in Europe when it comes to crime, we're too damn soft.

And yet it appears to work better. Crime rates are comparatively low in Europe and are still going down.
 
ORFflyer
Posts: 3142
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 6:04 pm



Quoting Klaus (Reply 35):
No, that is obviously not the case in real life or the statistics would reflect that to be the case. They don't.

Statistics can be twisted to support either argument. And not just on this subject.

Quoting ZakHH (Reply 39):
Justice for me is a moral aspect.

And that is precisely what makes it your opinion, and not a fact.

Quoting ZakHH (Reply 39):
and I'm glad to see the discussion not going completely out of bounds (yet   ).

Me too - let's keep it that way.  Wink

Quoting ZakHH (Reply 39):
What I intended to say is that it is almost impossible to draw a line.

Hence my answer of situational dependant. I don't think there is a fine line that can be evenly drawn. To use the old cliche - Everything isn't black and white.

Quoting ZakHH (Reply 39):
So would a life in prison.

 no  Lot's of crimes are committed by folks on the orders of other folks in prison.
 
Klaus
Posts: 21642
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RE: This Is The Reason We Need The Death Penalty

Tue Nov 27, 2007 6:18 pm



Quoting ORFflyer (Reply 48):
Statistics can be twisted to support either argument. And not just on this subject.

There's not much room for twisting when looking at the crime rates around the introduction or abolishment of the death penalty. The claimed deterrent effect is just not there.

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