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Old 11-25-2009, 08:21 AM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
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I'm not saying every American is vengeful because that's definitely not true, but generally speaking, is American culture a vengeful culture? We still have the death penalty while most other modern countries got rid of it completely decades ago, we take pride in "not taking crap from anyone", not saying people should be push-overs but the phrase does imply vengefulness, many people would consider it justified to kill someone just for stealing from you or even walking through your land.
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Old 11-25-2009, 08:24 AM
 
Location: Phoenix
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MimzyMusic View Post
I'm not saying every American is vengeful because that's definitely not true, but generally speaking, is American culture a vengeful culture? We still have the death penalty while most other modern countries got rid of it completely decades ago, we take pride in "not taking crap from anyone", not saying people should be push-overs but the phrase does imply vengefulness, many people would consider it justified to kill someone just for stealing from you or even walking through your land.
We're also a culture that believes in happy endings.
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Old 11-25-2009, 09:26 AM
 
Location: 30-40N 90-100W
13,856 posts, read 22,973,253 times
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To a degree yes. It isn't that we have the death penalty, I think a non-vengeance reasons for that exists, but that when asked American support is usually vengeance based. Also in polls we tend to like war. Oh we may say we don't like war, but the majority of us don't really mean it. What we mean is we don't like wars that go on too long. In a recent poll Americans are willing to go to war with Iran over nukes even though they are are unhappy with the wars we're in. In 2002 a poll asked three questions

"Would you support using military force against Iraq" 73% yes
"Military force in Somalia" 65% yes
"Military force in Sudan" 73% yes

Polling Wars: Hawks vs. Doves - Pew Research Center

However if it goes on for more than 2 years Americans tend to lose interest or support. So a popular American foreign policy, I think, would be to bomb the heck out of our enemies for a few months, but not occupy them or try to rebuild them at all.

Still it varies from region to region. The South and the Southwest I think are stereotyped as the most vengeful.
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Old 11-25-2009, 10:05 AM
 
Location: Florida
1,779 posts, read 3,486,761 times
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American society is extremeley vengeful. Not only is there the death penalty/war examples cited earlier but there is also the civil court sytem.

-In divorces, spouses go to war over assets more so than other countries. Whatever party feels slighted by the ruling then goes on to take revenge against the other party....." I'm not paying alimony or child support" or "I don't care if the court gave you visitation, get off my property".....

-Then there are all the lawsuits. The coffee was hot and I spilled, I'm going to sue McDonalds." or " I got cancer from tobacco, now I'm going to sue Philip Morris" and tens of thousands of other lawsuits.
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Old 11-25-2009, 10:10 AM
 
Location: Blankity-blank!
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Bloodthirsty!
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Old 11-25-2009, 10:33 AM
 
Location: Willowbend/Houston
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Yes, abosolutely! Why do think the death penalty exisits? Its not for punishing the criminal. Most would rather die than live 50+ years in confinment. Its so that the people who lost their loved one can watch the murderer die. That it. Its cathartic, not justice.

Its also the same reason we feel the need to invade countries. In the process we harm more people who are good than bad and write it off as collaterial damage. But its ok because the people we hate also suffered.

In American we want to watch people who do us wrong suffer. That is the sad truth of our wonderful nation.
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Old 11-25-2009, 12:14 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
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I wonder how much of it is really the people and how much of it is brainwashing. Like the death penalty for instance. I wonder how many Americans would change their mind if they were personally affected by it on either side. Would you still support the death penalty if your son or daughter was sentenced to it? Could you allow someone to pull the switch on a person, even if they harmed a loved one?

Deep down, I think Americans are just like any other people, we're just taught to believe in different things.
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Old 11-25-2009, 01:27 PM
 
Location: Greater PDX
1,018 posts, read 3,727,586 times
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If we were really vengeful, we wouldn't have lethal injections. We'd dump murderers into a cage with a pack of wild dogs. Hey, I wonder if I can pitch that as a new reality show...
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Old 11-25-2009, 04:43 PM
 
Location: Boston, MA
11,747 posts, read 8,310,386 times
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As a nation no.
In regards to a few things stated above:
We, as a nation or culture, do not like war. That is a ridiculous assessment!
Also, capital punishment is meant to deter, not get revenge.

But I will add that no one should criticize the family of a murder victim for wanting this kind of justice unless they have experienced the murder of a loved one.
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Old 11-25-2009, 06:51 PM
 
Location: 30-40N 90-100W
13,856 posts, read 22,973,253 times
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Actually I believe in the death penalty for some crimes and initially supported both the Afghanistan and Iraq wars.

I think I did overstate things. The wars Americans support are generally based in wanting to be safe. Still I think if you asked Americans "should we bomb Venezuela for insulting us and maligning our image?" you might get more saying "yes" than you'd expect. And if you asked "should we execute people by torturing them to death" I would think it's possible you'd get 30% support going by general support for torture (when that word is specifically asked) to get information.
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