Post # 1
Caylee thread got me thinking. I am staunchly against the death penalty. It is a topic I actually studied quite a bit in undergrad and wrote a few academic papers on, and then I worked on it a bit in law school too– although now I work in civil law. I find it an interesting topic though because unlike a lot of other hotly debated political items (like say– abortion) it doesn’t seem to fall as much along party lines. Sure MORE conservatives are pro death penalty than liberals… but I’ve found serious blurring of the lines and a lot of cross-over.
So, I’m curious about what the hive thinks, and why. This IS a thread for differing opinions and I’ll respect both sides of the fence… but lets try to keep it civil.
I could (and have) write pages and pages on this but to try to be concise, the biggest reasons I do not believe in the death penalty are:
1) It costs more to execute someone than to keep them in prison for life
2) The inherent and irreversible risk of executing an innocent person (see: illinois)
3) There is absolutely no proof that the death penalty acts as a deterrent to violent crime
4) The death penalty is applied in wildly disproportionate way (when looking at both offender and victim)
5) In a completely personal way, causing the death of ANYONE feels wrong
6) I believe that living every day in a cage is worse than simply dying
Post # 3
i’ll just quote Gandalf–
“Many that live deserve death. And some that die deserve life. Can you give it to them? Then do not be too eager to deal out death in judgement. For even the very wise cannot see all ends.”
Post # 4
I’m very against it–I don’t think it solves anything.
Post # 5
Nope. We have the means to contain murderers, we don’t need to kill them.
Post # 6
Generally, no I do not believe in it. But there are a few exceptions where I think “wow, that person did something so incredibly, disgustingly, horrifically inhumane that I support their death”. But these thoughts are few and far between, are almost always cases that involve children, and is not something I vocally support, even if the thought flits around for a moment or two.
ETA: Generally I believe that life behind bars is a more suitable punishment than death.
Post # 7
I am against it because of reason number 2 – this is just as horrible as the crime itself.
Post # 8
I’m against the death penalty. If a viciious, horrible rapist/child molester/murderer happened to die in a natural way, I certainly wouldn’t cry over their death. But I don’t think it’s okay to institutionalize killing someone. It’s not the government’s place.
Post # 9
@Mrs Sarah McK: I agree, they should have to live out their years thinking about their crime(s).
Post # 10
I am going against the grain when One of your BEST friends and a great person gets shot it the back of the head 3 times for NO REASON a prison sentence just doesnt seem like enough….
Post # 11
@MsPanda: I really think that’s what causes some line blurring. Objectively, killing seems wrong, but subjectively, it’s hard not to want the swiftest, most complete vengence available.
Post # 12
@MsPanda: I agree with you (although I have never had to go through the violent loss of someone close to me – I’m sorry about your friend).
Some people, through their actions towards others, no longer deserve to live and breathe on this earth, getting to be visited by friends and loved ones while the people they’ve killed are forever gone and their loved ones never get to see or speak to them again.
Post # 13
I am against it. Personally, I feel like they should live a long horrible life. Like get solitary confinement for the rest of their life. I dunno, to me, it seems like death is an easy way out.
Post # 14
I am against it for those same reasons, plus the fact that race is such a huge factor in the way it is applied in the US. I just think the state’s power to deprive a person of life should be as strictly limited as possible (legal wars, defense of self or others).
That said, I KNOW if someone I cared about was murdered, I would feel the same as MsPanda. I just don’t think that those (entirely understandable, justified) emotions should be the basis for policy making. For instance, emotionally I think rapists should have their dicks cut off. Ethically, that is not an acceptable government policy.
Post # 15
I’m for it.
Some criminals are not rehabilitatable, there is no reason for them to continue to exist.
That being said, I think that more focus and emphasis needs to be put on criminal rehabilitation.
Also, if someone is given the death penalty, it should not be expensive. I believe it should be a quick couple of shots and be done.
Death is the easy way out for a many people, but you know, I’m ok with that . Many people get very comfortable in prison. They get institutionalized and are content being in prison, so even life in prison doesn’t always work out to be the punishment that is deserved.
Post # 16
I think if there is any possible way the person might be innocent, then no, the death penalty is not the answer. But if the person is a dangerous repeat offender and there is irrefutable proof of their crimes? Why bother spending money feeding, clothing and housing someone who has taken multiple lives and shows absolutely no sign of remorse for what they have done? I don’t find it inhumane to dispose of someone who has no humanity left in them. I also agree with Tunacupcakes that executions should not be so expensive.