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Thoughts on the Death Penalty

Discussion in 'U.S. Politics' started by Miltiades, Dec 7, 2007.

  1. Miltiades

    Miltiades New Member

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    Lately there has been some controversy over whether we should use the death penalty less or even not at all. Some view it as inhumane as it ceases the life of a fellow human being. Others say while they do not wish to kill, sometimes it is necessary, as the one sentenced is just too dangerous to be kept alive. Both have good points, but which should we imply? And which is more humane in the long run, to sentence one to death and end their life in a matter of seconds, or sentence them to life imprisonment where they rot in a cell over how many years. Shouldn’t ending their life quickly actually be more humane then? Then again, isn’t it better to live in misery than not to live at all?

    First I will talk about life imprisonment. This is often thought of this most decent way to keep a dangerous person out of society, as they remain alive yet unable to commit crime while in jail. But what can they “live?” When we think of “alive” we commonly associate it with living and having life. But when it comes to humans simply having life doesn’t mean we are “alive.” When we are creative, hold love, want, sadness, and joy, THEN we are truly alive. A felon in jail can’t exactly do all of these things as he is restrained from the world except for his fellow prisoners and the news. They can’t be as creative, and loving as the rest of the world because they weren’t loving (not always the case though) to begin with (thus leading to jail) and being locked up doesn’t help that. So when we order life imprisonment do we truly keep them “alive?” Of course death sentence doesn’t do anything different and it kills them almost totally (only spirit remains if you believe such things). So we should take life imprisonment as it is, not as it is propagandized-the most decent thing we can do. We can do many other decent things instead of life imprisonment to the criminals, but those wouldn’t solve the problem of the felony. There is a not so popular argument by some supporters of the death penalty that says if we are going to kill the convicts over time why not do it now as it saves time, money, and resources. Sadly, what it DOESN’T save is lives, however small and unworthy they are. Another argument is that because of the increasing US population in prisons, the death penalty reduces this. This is not so correct. Those sentenced to death make up a very small portion of the US criminals, so it wouldn’t reduce the population in jail very much.

    Now for the death penalty portion. It is said that this spares a felon of years of suffering and rotting in a cell. Again, shouldn’t it be better to live locked up than to not live period? Execution axes the possibility that a criminal escape should he continue to do crime. It also ends the possibility that the “criminal” will be set free due to later evidence that he/she is actually innocent. This is unlikely but it can happen if the person is lucky enough! Killing a criminal also kills a resource. If a later crime appears and the executed person is a witness or he knew information, etc, we can’t use him because he is, well, dead.

    Both forms are execution I think, one just ends it faster than the other does. Its up to America to decide now.
     
  2. Kwaku

    Kwaku New Member

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    A couple of hundred years ago all civilasations had some form of the death penalty. Over the years most of the countries in the westerne world have stopped using the death penalty and now that even countries such as Rwanda are saying goodbye to capital punishment it might be a nice time for the US to do the same.

    Actually, from what I've seen on tv, I'd probably prefer capital punishment to some of the jails in the US!
     
  3. Popeye

    Popeye Active Member

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    Look, I'm a liberal, but I don't understand this aversion to the death penalty. If somebody is proven guilty of murder, not just by a jury but by DNA evidence and they have a history of doing other people harm, then they don't deserve to live. Seems simple to me.
     
  4. PLC1

    PLC1 Moderator Staff Member

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    This is one reason to eliminate the death penalty.

    Do you trust the government to have power of life and death over an individual? Think about it. Two hundred nine innocent people have been exonerated so far, all of them convicted in a court of law to be guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

    Do you think it can't happen to you?

    The other reason to eliminate the death penalty is that life in prison is certainly harder than a relatively painless death. Let the truly guilty rot in prison with nothing to think about but their crimes. Maybe they'll be more repentant when they have to explain their lives to their maker.
     
  5. Mr. Shaman

    Mr. Shaman New Member

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    .....Especially when you consider the company we keep; primarily those Evil, non-Christian nations. :rolleyes:
     
  6. Mr. Shaman

    Mr. Shaman New Member

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    I can't explain the conflict (in numbers).....but, here's another site.

    I guess that'd be dependent upon whether-or-not you're up against some Prosecutor who's workin' on a Fast Track to a Senate-seat.

    You'd have to believe in such fantasies as Santa Claus, The Easter Bunny, The Tooth Fairy and A Maker, to take any comfort in such an idea.
     
  7. Mr. Shaman

    Mr. Shaman New Member

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    I consider myself a Liberal, as well......but, I guess I'm that other-kind; one who's constantly searching for Alternatives to processes that don't work, rather-than throwing my hands up-in-the-air, saying "That's the way things are!".....you know, the Simple Answer (currently supplied, in massive-quantities, by The Whitehouse). :rolleyes:
     
  8. Mr. Shaman

    Mr. Shaman New Member

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    Lucks got nothin' to do with it. Quite-often (lately) it's a matter of Science.....and, living in a country that gives-a-damn about The Truth.....debatable, at best, presently.
     
  9. Mr. Shaman

    Mr. Shaman New Member

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    I see The Death Penalty as a tool used by an ignorant & (more-recently) LAZY country....mostly, out of it's convenience. We can claim we had no other choice or God will sort-things-out....both excuses for taking the-easy-way-out. :mad:

    We've (historically/worldwide) never failed to come-up with extremely-creative ways of making people pay for their crimes....but, we've got options, now.....with long-term benefits!!!

    My suggestion, is.....all people who're convicted of murder (beyond-a-doubt)....would be isolated to a Super-Max-type prison.

    Firstly, it would have to be established they were Guilty....and, make reparations (to Innocents) so severe...that any Court/State/Prosecutor would (certainly) think twice/THREE-times about dealing-out the Ultimate-Punishment.

    Secondly, this Super-Max would be a research-facility....delving-into/establishing why (individual) people resort to murderous-behavior......and, we've got the tools to DO so!!

    Wouldn't it make sense preventing such behavior (as a result of research)....rather-than dealing with murder, after-the-fact?!! Presently, such theraputical-efforts are in-the-works.

    Maybe the ultimate-fear is....we'll find-out Society (in-general) is responsible for turning-their-eyes-away, when a Murderer is being created.

    The Fact remains.....we don't KNOW (for a fact) what creates murderous-behavior.....and, the reasons might be as various as any terminal-disease.

    Chances are.....murderous-behavior might be one more o' those choices....like skin-color, gender & homosexuality.
     
  10. Bunz

    Bunz New Member

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    I have several issues with the death penalty. I am not one who thinks that there is never a time capital punishment need be applied. There are times when it is called for in my opinion. My problem with capital punishment is the very subjective way it is carried out.

    There is a dis-proportionate number of minorities on death row, but even more remarkable are the lower socio-economic indicators, regardless of race, the poor are much more likely to receive a death sentence.

    The issue of incorrectable punishment for innocent people is always something that should be taken into account. PLC1 points out the innocence project and that has put forth an additional layer in an already flawed system. So I applaud them for thier efforts and achievements on some cases where justice wasnt served.

    Now there are times when in my opinion the death penalty is warranted. When that is the case, and the details of the event match the guidelines set out to justify capital punishment. Then make that punishment swift. Lets not drag this out decades when an obviously guilty person lives long enough to be saved by religion gain sympathy, be released and able to do it again, as in another recent thread on this site.
    Human error is something that will always be a part of our system from accusation, trial, conviction and into the penalty part of a criminal act. We need to recognize efforts to minimize human error but also realize it should always be accounted for.

    Lesson in my post. Hindsight is 20-20 and much less forgiving.
    Never overestimate the collective intelligence of humans in large groups.
     
  11. Mr. Shaman

    Mr. Shaman New Member

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    Before DNA-testing was considered/implemented, there were a lot of people considered "obviously guilty".

    Unfortunately, those "endless"-appeals proved worthwhile (See: Years Between)....except for the Prosecutors who were intent on expanding their Body-Counts.

    No thinking-person is demanding release as The Option.

    Thank you, for reiterating the Anti-Death-Penalty position.
     
  12. numinus

    numinus New Member

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    The right to live is an inalienable right of everyone - the MOST FUNDAMENTAL RIGHT from which ALL human or civil rights come from. And it is precisely because it is inalienable, which makes the death penalty self-contradictory.

    What's so hard to understand in that?
     
  13. Popeye

    Popeye Active Member

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    Say you've got a man who rapes and murders 6 young girls, DNA evidence says he did, he says he did it, a jury says he did it. In other words, there is absolutely no doubt, in fact this guy is proud of what he has done and laughs about it.

    Are you telling me he has "an inalienable right" to live? Give me a break. He has, by his own actions forfeited his right to live.

    I agree with Bunz, it should be done quickly.
     
  14. numinus

    numinus New Member

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    LOL

    Can one forfeit an INALIENABLE right?

    You need to seriously look up the meanings of the words you are using.
     
  15. Popeye

    Popeye Active Member

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    If you look real close you will see there are QUOTATION MARKS around that word, as I was quoting you. I, personally don't feel there is an inalienable right to live for such a test case as I outlined, which, I notice, you failed to address.
     
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