Poll: Is the death penalty murder?

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Thread: Death Penalty

  1. #1
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    Death Penalty

    Personally, I am in favor of the death penalty. I will defend my position once the argument starts.
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  2. #2
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    In response to the question "Is the death penalty murder?" the answer is obviously yes. It's first degree murder. That being said, there are times when murder is legally allowed - war or self defense, for example. I believe there are crimes that deserve death as a punishment.

    The biggest problem I have with the death penalty is the cost. With trials and appeals, one execution can end up costing more than a life sentence by the time the execution is actually carried out. As a taxpayer, I would prefer seeing my money go to roads or schools than trying to kill somebody, even if I feel they deserve it.

    There's also the issue if executing an innocent person. Obviously, this is an undesirable outcome.

    There have been cases of convicted murderers who have been released from prison for one reason or another and went on to kill again. This arises from a failure in the justice system or a moronic judge who thinks he is being humanitarian by seeing past the violent history of a convicted felon.

    In any case, while I believe some criminals should just be carried into the street and shot, I don't think the death penalty is worth it in today's society.

  3. #3
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    I'm against the Death Penalty. You can't suffer once you're dead.
    "They asked if I had found Jesus and I didn't even know He was missing."

  4. #4
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    Against, mainly for reasons of moral relativism. If you judge someone to die because of your moral standards, how does that make you better than them?
    The truth may be out there, but lies are in your head.

  5. #5
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    If you execut someone then it is because they have committed an offense against the laws of the land.

    Morals and law are different things albeit one can spring form the other at the same time they can be completely different.

    You can be morally in the right, but legally in the wrong.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by iangb View Post
    Against, mainly for reasons of moral relativism. If you judge someone to die because of your moral standards, how does that make you better than them?
    I'm confused. Are you saying you don't think there is such a thing as moral relativism? Do you believe every action is either always right or always wrong no matter what the circumstances?

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    Raping babies won't get you killed anymore...

    It is interesting that SCOTUS recently ruled that execution for raping a child constitutes cruel and inhuman punishment. The concurring liberal side of the court says that since nobody died, the execution is disproportionate to the crime.

    That should make all the parents of young children feel a lot better.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrNo View Post
    In response to the question "Is the death penalty murder?" the answer is obviously yes. It's first degree murder. That being said, there are times when murder is legally allowed - war or self defense, for example. I believe there are crimes that deserve death as a punishment.
    It's not murder - would you rather have one person die or have the person kill several other inmates who commited less serious crimes, which could have been avoided if you executed them in the first place?

    The biggest problem I have with the death penalty is the cost. With trials and appeals, one execution can end up costing more than a life sentence by the time the execution is actually carried out. As a taxpayer, I would prefer seeing my money go to roads or schools than trying to kill somebody, even if I feel they deserve it.
    Which is why they shouldn't be sitting on death row for fifteen years.

    There's also the issue if executing an innocent person. Obviously, this is an undesirable outcome.
    This doesn't happen very often.

    There have been cases of convicted murderers who have been released from prison for one reason or another and went on to kill again. This arises from a failure in the justice system or a moronic judge who thinks he is being humanitarian by seeing past the violent history of a convicted felon.
    So if they continue to kill people, they'll kill inmates.

    In any case, while I believe some criminals should just be carried into the street and shot, I don't think the death penalty is worth it in today's society.
    Yeah, people who carry guns without a CCW can be slaughtered in prisons by murderers who could have been executed.
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  9. #9
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    Plenty of heat, but barely a dim glow of illumination... If an innocent person is ever once murdered by the state, then it is too often
    " ... It's not as though he proved anything, he only refuted my evidence. ..." Archangel 04.01.09

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    Quote Originally Posted by sinjin View Post
    I'm against the Death Penalty. You can't suffer once you're dead.
    Well, if the prisoner lived, he might put others out of their misery.
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  11. #11
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    Though I would not call the death penalty murder, I am personally against it. I see it mainly as state sanctioned and state administered vengeance. Though I admit that, if a loved one would be brutally killed, my anger and grief would probably drive me to want such vengeance as well, I don't think we should set social policy based on our most instinctive emotions but on rational reasons.

    So, what are some of the reasons why we impose various types of punishments on criminal offenders?
    1) Protecting the public. This, I think, is the most important. A serious violent offender that runs a high risk of offending again should be kept locked away from the public for however long such risk exists. The justice system too often fails us in this. It may not be an easy job to judge which criminals will continue to be high risks, but I think the justice system could do a better job than it is currently doing. Often enough, a life sentence needs to really be just that - a LIFE sentence with no opportunity for release. Where the death penalty is concerned, as long as high risk prisoners are truly kept to a life sentence, then the requirement for protecting the public is kept and there is no need to kill them.

    2) Punishment to rehabilitate the prisoner to be capable of reentering society safely. This has always led to mixed results. For some prisoners, punishment will deter them from ever committing another major crime. For others, it is irrelevant. Either way, even if it is not 100% effective, it is worth the effort to try to rehabilitate prisoners just for the sake of the majority that will not become repeat offenders. Where the death penalty is concerned, it is irrelevant to speak of rehabilitation since any lessons the criminal learns from that sentence will be moot since he will never re-enter society - he will be dead. This is partly true for life sentences as well.

    3) Deterrence. The statistics about the effectiveness of the death penalty in deterring crimes are very mixed and seem inconclusive. Statistical studies made by various groups often show opposite conclusions. Unless there can be solid uncontestable evidence shown that the death penalty is significant in deterring crime, this cannot be used as an argument for the death penalty.

    4) Restoration - i.e. righting the wrong For example, a vandal might be made to clean up the mess he has made. Though this happens to some degree for minor offenses, it doesn't seem to be followed too much for higher level offenses. Either way, this is irrelevant for the death penalty. What, really, does the death of the perpetrator give to the grieving family besides a sense of satisfaction of vengeance?

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ethmi View Post
    It's not murder - would you rather have one person die or have the person kill several other inmates who commited less serious crimes, which could have been avoided if you executed them in the first place?
    My mistake. According to Merriam-Webster dictionary, murder is defined as the crime of unlawfully killing a person especially with malice aforethought. Executing somebody is not an unlawful killing so therefore it is not murder.

    As far as your second point goes, we cannot begin to dish out punishments based on what people might do. This is the same argument people in favor of gun control use: "Criminals might steal a gun and use it in a crime so we should ban guns." It's impossible to say for sure that a person sentenced to life in prison is going to "kill several other inmates who committed less serious crimes." That is not a valid argument in favor of executing them.

    Which is why they shouldn't be sitting on death row for fifteen years.
    They shouldn't, but they do. The current incarnation of the death penalty allows this to occur. While I am not against execution, I would rather see tax dollars go to something a bit more useful than trying to execute one person.

    This doesn't happen very often.
    Once is too much. Although, personally, I would rather be executed if I was innocent than sit in a cell for life.

    So if they continue to kill people, they'll kill inmates.
    That is not a provable statement. You are simply speculating on what might occur based on the fact that some prisoners have killed each other in the past.

    Yeah, people who carry guns without a CCW can be slaughtered in prisons by murderers who could have been executed.
    You are acting like this is a regular occurrence. Can you link me 1 story where a person thrown in prison for carrying a gun illegally was murdered in prison? People are killed in prisons, but you are acting like the inmates just run around offing one another because they don't have anything better to do.

    Why are you concerned about inmates killing each other but dismiss innocent people being executed because, according to you, "this doesn't happen very often."?

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by iangb View Post
    Against, mainly for reasons of moral relativism. If you judge someone to die because of your moral standards, how does that make you better than them?
    Because you're keeping them from killing others again.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrNo View Post
    My mistake. According to Merriam-Webster dictionary, murder is defined as the crime of unlawfully killing a person especially with malice aforethought. Executing somebody is not an unlawful killing so therefore it is not murder.
    Then I guess I was wrong to assume that you think it's murder.

    As far as your second point goes, we cannot begin to dish out punishments based on what people might do. This is the same argument people in favor of gun control use: "Criminals might steal a gun and use it in a crime so we should ban guns." It's impossible to say for sure that a person sentenced to life in prison is going to "kill several other inmates who committed less serious crimes." That is not a valid argument in favor of executing them.
    There is a difference. Most gun owners have no violent history - criminals are incarcerated because they did something illegal - murder, rape, robbery, etc.

    They shouldn't, but they do. The current incarnation of the death penalty allows this to occur. While I am not against execution, I would rather see tax dollars go to something a bit more useful than trying to execute one person.
    Execute them fresh out of court, and less money is spent supporting them for fifteen years until the court stops procrastinating in killing them.



    Once is too much. Although, personally, I would rather be executed if I was innocent than sit in a cell for life.
    Innocent inmates could be killed in prison - how is that different from being executed?

    That is not a provable statement. You are simply speculating on what might occur based on the fact that some prisoners have killed each other in the past.
    There's plenty of them "aryan nation" freaks in jails. If you were a black guy who was thrown in jail, would you want to deal with these guys. I'll use your argument - once is too much.

    You are acting like this is a regular occurrence. Can you link me 1 story where a person thrown in prison for carrying a gun illegally was murdered in prison? People are killed in prisons, but you are acting like the inmates just run around offing one another because they don't have anything better to do.

    Why are you concerned about inmates killing each other but dismiss innocent people being executed because, according to you, "this doesn't happen very often."?
    I'll use your argument - once is too much.
    My imaginary friend left me. He said his other friends didn't believe in me.

    Spending our way out of the recession is like drinking our way out of alcoholism.

    "My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government."
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ethmi View Post
    would you rather have one person die or have the person kill several other inmates who commited less serious crimes, which could have been avoided if you executed them in the first place?
    ...
    So if they continue to kill people, they'll kill inmates.
    You seem to be under the misconception that, if one doesn't kill a highly dangerous criminal, they will kill other inmates. You seem to forget that there are many ways to isolate the most dangerous criminals - from solitary confinement in regular prisons to supermax prisons that place very stringent controls on their prisoners. Killing them is not the only option for exercising final control on their actions.

    Also, the prisoners who might otherwise qualify for the death penalty are not the only ones that commit crimes while in prison. Criminals who have been convicted of lesser crimes, such as theft, also often show brutality, even murder, in prison. Would you execute them all? Instead, the prison systems should do a better job of identifying the worse inner-prison troublemakers to begin with and isolating them or controling them more.

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