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Are you pro-death penalty?
yes
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 49% [ 17 ]
no
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 51% [ 18 ]
Total Votes : 35
 

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Gravity's Silhouette
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Tue Aug 30, 2011 10:40 am

Loomis wrote:


I presume, Grav, that you detest big government and believe that the state should butt out of as many aspects of our lives as possible. If so, is it not ironic that you feel that the state should possess the power of life and death via capital punishment?

No irony and no contradiction. People need government. I pay my taxes every year. I'm not anti-government as much as I'm against waste, whether it be money, time or other resources. Matters of law enforcement ARE exactly why we pay so much in taxes; it's not something that anybody can butt out of other than extreme-left wing anarchists who despise any form of government.


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1. Society is always "better" than these scumbags and never goes down to their level.

I could not disagree more. Giving someone a fair, transparent trial, plus 20 years worth of appeals is the hallmark of a just and civil society. Grabbing a suspect and burning him/her at the stake with no trial and no evidence and no due process is 'going down to their level'.

But one reason I favor the death penalty above all other forms of punishment is that the murderer has nothing to give back to society other than his own life. A thief or a burglar can always try and make some form of restitution to the victim. But there is no way to bring back the dead. A person who has murdered has nothing to give back to society because there IS NOTHING that could be given back, so to balance the scales of justice that person must surrender and forfeit their life if the circumstances warrant.

I'm not pro-death penalty in every case. There have been plenty of examples where I felt life in prison was sufficient (the case of Susan Smith driving her car into a lake and drowning her two boys was one of the more high profile examples of a verdict I agreed with).

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2. If you believe in the right to life, then that right is absolute (that's what, erm, makes it a right, I guess) and cannot be taken away from you, no matter who you are or what you've done.


Again, I totally disagree. We have a lot of "rights" in our lives that can be taken away if we violate some of the most important laws of the land. We can lose the right to vote, the right to drive, the right to travel, the right to be in and amongst a free society...even the right to live.

I brought up the topic of abortion because I think it represents the flip side of the death penalty argument. In all my years of having this discussion, I find that, in general, people who are anti-death penalty also tend to be "pro-choice". I've had countless discussions with people trying to convince me to go vegan/vegetarian, or to let my cats and dogs run wild in the woods because I'm enslaving them and crimping their lifestyle (by feeding them constantly and giving them lots of love and toys), or I'm humiliating my dogs and cats because I refer to them as "pets" and fail to recognize their personhood :roll: So it is always with great interest that I wonder whether or not these same people who are so admirably concerned about dogs, cats, and murderers convicted of raping and murdering multiple people are also as concerned with the most defenseless in our society: unborn children. I just find it a fascinating dichotomy of philosophies that some who are honestly opposed to the death penalty can't also see that we're imposing a death penalty on hundreds of thousands of innocent lives every year through no fault of their own, with no crimes having been committed against humanity. Until human society resolves the issue of abortion, it will never resolve the issue of capital punishment because in both instances the state has given itself (or by proxy the individual) the power to decide which life warrants the death penalty/abortion.

Those are my two cents.
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Harmsway
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Tue Aug 30, 2011 10:45 am

Sharky wrote:
I think he's suggesting in an amorphous way that human life is a privilege, not a right.
No, I wasn't suggesting that, per se.

I was suggesting that the language of "rights," which is inherited from Enlightenment-era thinking, frames the discussion in certain terms. The language of "rights" has always struck me as problematic, particularly when it is removed from the Enlightenment-era beliefs that supported it (which in many cases it has been, since most of us are way out of sync with the Enlightenment ideas about the universe that so established this legal language). "Rights" as they currently exist are little more than communally agreed-upon entitlements, and citing them for anything merely muddies the waters.
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Tue Aug 30, 2011 11:34 am

Gravity's Silhouette wrote:
In all my years of having this discussion, I find that, in general, people who are anti-death penalty also tend to be "pro-choice". I've had countless discussions with people trying to convince me to go vegan/vegetarian, or to let my cats and dogs run wild in the woods because I'm enslaving them and crimping their lifestyle (by feeding them constantly and giving them lots of love and toys), or I'm humiliating my dogs and cats because I refer to them as "pets" and fail to recognize their personhood :roll:

I don't have a firm opinion on abortion. It's an extremely complicated subject which thankfully I've never had to deal with (not that I've had to deal with the death penalty, either, but I do have a strong gut feeling about it). I'm not a vegan or vegetarian, and I used to have a pet dog.

Gun control, though.... anyone wanna start a thread on it? :D
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Tue Aug 30, 2011 12:00 pm

Harmsway wrote:
"Rights" as they currently exist are little more than communally agreed-upon entitlements, and citing them for anything merely muddies the waters.

But wouldn't they always have been "little more than communally agreed-upon entitlements", even way back when "rights" were first thought up?

Which Enlightenment-era beliefs are you referring to that we're out of synch with? How has the word "rights" become divorced from its original meaning?
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Tue Aug 30, 2011 3:33 pm

Gravity's Silhouette wrote:
So it is always with great interest that I wonder whether or not these same people who are so admirably concerned about dogs, cats, and murderers convicted of raping and murdering multiple people are also as concerned with the most defenseless in our society: unborn children. I just find it a fascinating dichotomy of philosophies that some who are honestly opposed to the death penalty can't also see that we're imposing a death penalty on hundreds of thousands of innocent lives every year through no fault of their own, with no crimes having been committed against humanity. Until human society resolves the issue of abortion, it will never resolve the issue of capital punishment because in both instances the state has given itself (or by proxy the individual) the power to decide which life warrants the death penalty/abortion.
Those are my two cents.
:shock: Brave words. There is much truth in what you speak.

However I can see how how "liberals" might oppose captial punishment yet support abortion. I can't personally relate to the reasoning. I think it breaks down. I think there is a contradiction there, but at the same time, you can't call pro-choicers bad people. The debate ultimately comes down to I think, do we grant the unborn full legal status as human beings? But plenty of good and fair minded people would say no.

Ultimately, I think in a democracy, you just have to put it to a vote, but whats' frustating is the left is always insisting that all their pet issues come down to a question of rights. They just keep inventing new ones to the point of absurdity. Once they get the "right" established and the correct thinking figure out, then no dissenting opinion can be brooked.

My two cents. Animals have no rights. We - humans- who do have human rights - have an obligation IMO to treat animals humanely - and we create laws to that effect- but no animal has any right to live. I love animals. I rescue at least two birds a year, that I deliver to wildlife rescue centres, however the centres will put them down if they can't be satisfactorily "repaired." But the animal "rights" wackos actually think a cow has a right to live - that we can't humanely slaughter it and eat it. These people are basically anti-human.:pig:
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Tue Aug 30, 2011 7:59 pm

Loomis wrote:
Harmsway wrote:
"Rights" as they currently exist are little more than communally agreed-upon entitlements, and citing them for anything merely muddies the waters.

But wouldn't they always have been "little more than communally agreed-upon entitlements", even way back when "rights" were first thought up?

Which Enlightenment-era beliefs are you referring to that we're out of synch with? How has the word "rights" become divorced from its original meaning?

Don't know what Harmsway means but to me it's obvious that sapere aude has turned into a travesty. People don't dare to know any more, they follow peer groups and don't speak their mind but what they think others want to hear. Even nonconformism is just another cheap trend with a 'like it' button. Enlightenment is just too much trouble for people to bother, they rather chase sensationalist entertainment.
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Harmsway
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Tue Aug 30, 2011 10:21 pm

Loomis wrote:
But wouldn't they always have been "little more than communally agreed-upon entitlements", even way back when "rights" were first thought up?
They were perceived to be derivations from a broader natural order and law that lay at the heart of the created, rational universe, so the term "rights" carried with it all sorts of philosophical baggage about the nature of the universe and the nature of humanity. These foundational beliefs have consistently been challenged over the past century, and that, along with other cultural tides, has resulted in a fractured society incapable of having an honest moral/ethical debate because there is no longer a shared philosophical starting point.
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Tue Aug 30, 2011 10:47 pm

Harmsway wrote:
These foundational beliefs have consistently been challenged over the past century, and that, along with other cultural tides, has resulted in a fractured society incapable of having an honest moral/ethical debate because there is no longer a shared philosophical starting point.

And from thereon opening the gates to moral relativism, courtesy of the the Frankfurt School. In their minds, the Jude-Christian interpretation of universal truth is authoritarian, Eurocentric, phallocentric, and obsolete. Marxism has won.
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Tue Aug 30, 2011 11:11 pm

Sharky wrote:
Harmsway wrote:
These foundational beliefs have consistently been challenged over the past century, and that, along with other cultural tides, has resulted in a fractured society incapable of having an honest moral/ethical debate because there is no longer a shared philosophical starting point.

And from thereon opening the gates to moral relativism, courtesy of the the Frankfurt School. In their minds, the Jude-Christian interpretation of universal truth is authoritarian, Eurocentric, phallocentric, and obsolete. Marxism has won.

Did the Frankenfurter School propagate this? Or just describe? I'd think Marxism hasn't won, history has.
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Wed Aug 31, 2011 4:08 am

I don't support the death penalty as a deterrent, but rather as a protection to society from those criminals who are so impossible to rehabilitate that they must be destroyed for the safety of others. Serial killers, for example, those who show no mercy for their crimes and whose crimes are continual and habitual, and whose incarceration would merely take up space, resources, and offer opportunities for parole, escape, etc.
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Wed Aug 31, 2011 6:32 am

Fairbairn-Sykes wrote:
I don't support the death penalty as a deterrent, but rather as a protection to society from those criminals who are so impossible to rehabilitate that they must be destroyed for the safety of others. Serial killers, for example, those who show no mercy for their crimes and whose crimes are continual and habitual, and whose incarceration would merely take up space, resources, and offer opportunities for parole, escape, etc.
I concur.
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Wed Aug 31, 2011 6:53 am

Fairbairn-Sykes wrote:
I don't support the death penalty as a deterrent, but rather as a protection to society from those criminals who are so impossible to rehabilitate that they must be destroyed for the safety of others. Serial killers, for example, those who show no mercy for their crimes and whose crimes are continual and habitual, and whose incarceration would merely take up space, resources, and offer opportunities for parole, escape, etc.
Pretty much what I was trying to say, but more clearly put. :)
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Gravity's Silhouette
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Wed Aug 31, 2011 8:33 am

Fairbairn-Sykes wrote:
I don't support the death penalty as a deterrent, but rather as a protection to society from those criminals who are so impossible to rehabilitate that they must be destroyed for the safety of others.

Damn that's a fine summation. Made me think of Zod, Ursa and Non from SUPERMAN. If we could just locate a Phantom Zone where we could send prisoners who were irredeemable and beyond the reach of the law...sort of like an intergalactic Guantanamo Bay. tongue
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Wed Aug 31, 2011 8:53 am

Sounds just as bad as death. Living alone, immortal in a giant glass in space and all you can hope for is a nuclear bomb going off to break you out and finally let the icy cold of space kill you. Unless you're Kryptonian.
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Wed Aug 31, 2011 9:05 am

Makeshift Python wrote:
Sounds just as bad as death. Living alone, immortal in a giant glass in space and all you can hope for is a nuclear bomb going off to break you out and finally let the icy cold of space kill you. Unless you're Kryptonian.

Must have been awfully uncomfortable in that floating mirror. Where did they go to use the bathroom? Did Zod "share" Ursa? How did they, uh, fulfill their urges? What was there to do to keep them entertained and occupied for 30+ years?
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Wed Aug 31, 2011 11:54 am

Makeshift Python wrote:
Fairbairn-Sykes wrote:
I don't support the death penalty as a deterrent, but rather as a protection to society from those criminals who are so impossible to rehabilitate that they must be destroyed for the safety of others. Serial killers, for example, those who show no mercy for their crimes and whose crimes are continual and habitual, and whose incarceration would merely take up space, resources, and offer opportunities for parole, escape, etc.
I concur.

Sociopaths, basically. Until stem cell research has advanced to the point where neural transplants are an option, there's no effective way to 'treat' someone with that pathology. It's not like psychosis (i.e. schizophrenia, manic depression. borderline personality disorder) or other disorders impairing one's judgement of reality. There are no psychotropic drugs for a psychopath, and leucotomy ain't the answer.
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Thu Sep 01, 2011 6:48 am

Except Sociopaths aren't all 'negative'. They can be your single-minded hero, intent on escape from a PoW camp; they can be your single-minded entrepreneur, intent on dragging himself out of the gutter. Sociopaths are not necessarily 'bad people'. Just as not all abused/deprived bedwetters serial killers.

We do not live in a clear cut world.
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Thu Sep 01, 2011 2:42 pm

If you like "death penalty" read the Destroyer novel series. Remo Williams and Chiun, Deadly Masters of Sinanju, and heirs to the ancient House of Sinanju line of Assassins, mete out death to anyone that needs it. Unlike Bond they have no qualms with killing in cold blood. Assassination is a noble profession.
Smith, head of the super secret agency CURE, assigns the deadly Masters to eliminate those that escape the Justice system or simply people that the authors thinks the world would be better off without. Sometimes Remo goes freelance and just offs those that need offing.
Eg. Remo took out OJ Simpson on the golf course. He fed Sting to killer monkeys in the Amazon rain forest, although the offing of Sting did tie in with the story. OJ was a side project.
The Masters are loyal to their trade and House. They only work for Cure because Cure pays them much gold although Remo is a U.S. patriot. Chiun could care less. He hates democracy. Prefers to work for despots.
These are the funniest, most politically incorrect books you will ever read. Guaranteed.
Remo btw is destined to be the greatest and most deadly Master of all time, which is saying something as the line goes back over 3000 years to the first Master, the Great Wang.
Chiun knows the prophecies and has identified Remo as the fullfillment of same. Remo is the Dead Night Tiger, made whole by the Master of Sinanju and avatar of the Hindu Destroyer God, Shiva.
Although Chiun, constantly berates Remo as unworthy and a lowly white, pale piece of pig's ear, (all the previous Masters have been Korean) so that Remo doesn't get a swelled head, Chiun is very much in awe of Remo's formidable talents which eventually eclipse his own.

We do, in the later books learn though, that Remo does have some distant Korean ancestry, much to Chiun's relief so all is well with the Sinanju bloodlines. Chiun only ever agreed to train Remo the white, for cash from Cure, and he only intended to give him a little knowledge, but he soon realized that Remo was actually the fullfillment of the ancient prophecy and destined to become Sinanju's deadliest Master, so he dutifully kept him on as his apprentice.
The Masters of Sinanju are perfect physical specimens who have harnessed the maximum potential of the human body through disciplined breathing and diet and practise of their ancient secret art, known only to the reigning Master and his apprentice. They can dodge bullets, throw cars and do impossible physical feats. They are virtually indestructible. One Master with his eyes closed could wipe out a 100 ninjas or more. The Masters are tuned to the vibrations of the universe.
Sinanju is considered to be the sun source of all martial arts. The lesser disciplines are merely rays emanating from the source.

http://www.destroyerbooks.com/index.php


http://www.sinanju.com/intro.htm
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Fri Sep 02, 2011 6:14 pm

if there's no human hope of rehabilitation, then yes. But practical and cost-effective avenues of rehabilitation (which I suppose may differ case to case) need to be exhausted first.
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Fri Sep 02, 2011 6:34 pm

RobDudley wrote:
if there's no human hope of rehabilitation, then yes. But practical and cost-effective avenues of rehabilitation (which I suppose may differ case to case) need to be exhausted first.
Doesn't this avenue pose some obvious problems, such as how can one know that a killer has been re-habbed or beyond re-hab hope?

But what what about justice? Isn't the whole point of 30 years to life or death penalty, about punishment for one's crimes.
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Fri Sep 02, 2011 6:51 pm

tiffanywint wrote:
RobDudley wrote:
if there's no human hope of rehabilitation, then yes. But practical and cost-effective avenues of rehabilitation (which I suppose may differ case to case) need to be exhausted first.
Doesn't this avenue pose some obvious problems, such as how can one know that a killer has been re-habbed or beyond re-hab hope?

But what what about justice? Isn't the whole point of 30 years to life or death penalty, about punishment for one's crimes.

Yes, there are problems. Problematic area and I don't really expect to be able to offer a solution I'm afraid.

Justice is an ideal, and any ideal is a perception, an opinion. Policy is a reality.
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Sat Sep 03, 2011 2:05 am

RobDudley wrote:
Justice is an ideal, and any ideal is a perception, an opinion. Policy is a reality.

All opinions aren't of equal worth. In an ideal world, they should be judged on their own merit by a democratically elected council.

Then shot.
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Sat Sep 03, 2011 6:10 am

The death penalty, were it brought back, would be decided by Law, and Law has nothing to do with Justice.

Justice tends be front of the queue with the blazing pitch fork and rope.

To consider the history of the death penalty, you should probably start with Bentham. To consider Reform, also consider the complete failure of the 'separate system'.

That's if you want a serious discussion of the topic.
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Sat Sep 03, 2011 6:20 am

Serious discussion? I wanted to discuss America under President Ted Bundy.
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PostSubject: Re: Are you pro-death penalty   Sat Sep 03, 2011 6:37 am

Apply the Mussolini Law of Facism - as long as the trains are running on time... ;)
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