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Old 10-08-2011, 12:30 AM
 
Location: Atlantis
3,017 posts, read 3,276,849 times
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Capital punishment for any crime that required it would be the answer. . .

If the criminal justice system was perfect.

However it is not, and so by default, capital punishment should never be used, unless those using it as a means to deter crime are able to live with the mistakes that sometimes occur.

The Innocence Project has helped free hundreds of men on death row who through DNA evidence were found to be innocent. Most would have been executed and died.

www.innocenceproject.org

So, show me a perfect system, if there even could be one and I will be a proponent of the death penalty.

There is a book that was written about Kerry Max Cook (called Chasing Justice) www.chasingjustice.com who spent over twenty years on death row and it appeared to the jurors in his original trial and appeals trials that he was guilty. He was innocent. The Innocence Project had his DNA tested (the state of Texas did not think the cost of the test was worth doing before his second appeals trial) and it did not match the semen found in the woman that was brutally raped and murdered. It did however match another suspect at the time Kerry was charged - the victim's estranged boyfriend that was married at the time. That man has never been charged because prior to Kerry's third appeals trial after 23 years on death row, the prosecutors offered him a plea bargain to include time served and he walked out of court. That was two years before the Innocence Project had the DNA tested, so the state of Texas will not charge the victim's ex boyfriend since they already have a "conviction" with Kerry Max Cook.

That case chronicles some of the worst abuses of prosecutorial power in the history of the US and in addition to that, the investigators in the case either due to stupidity, laziness or outright malice pinned the case orginally on Kerry and lied their way through the trial. Had he not even had his appeals process drag on over 20 years, he would have definetely been executed well before DNA evidence was even an accepted science in courtrooms.
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Old 10-08-2011, 07:19 AM
 
28,206 posts, read 20,808,010 times
Reputation: 16600
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skydive Outlaw View Post
Capital punishment for any crime that required it would be the answer. . .

If the criminal justice system was perfect.

However it is not, and so by default, capital punishment should never be used, unless those using it as a means to deter crime are able to live with the mistakes that sometimes occur.

The Innocence Project has helped free hundreds of men on death row who through DNA evidence were found to be innocent. Most would have been executed and died.

www.innocenceproject.org

So, show me a perfect system, if there even could be one and I will be a proponent of the death penalty.

There is a book that was written about Kerry Max Cook (called Chasing Justice) www.chasingjustice.com who spent over twenty years on death row and it appeared to the jurors in his original trial and appeals trials that he was guilty. He was innocent. The Innocence Project had his DNA tested (the state of Texas did not think the cost of the test was worth doing before his second appeals trial) and it did not match the semen found in the woman that was brutally raped and murdered. It did however match another suspect at the time Kerry was charged - the victim's estranged boyfriend that was married at the time. That man has never been charged because prior to Kerry's third appeals trial after 23 years on death row, the prosecutors offered him a plea bargain to include time served and he walked out of court. That was two years before the Innocence Project had the DNA tested, so the state of Texas will not charge the victim's ex boyfriend since they already have a "conviction" with Kerry Max Cook.

That case chronicles some of the worst abuses of prosecutorial power in the history of the US and in addition to that, the investigators in the case either due to stupidity, laziness or outright malice pinned the case orginally on Kerry and lied their way through the trial. Had he not even had his appeals process drag on over 20 years, he would have definetely been executed well before DNA evidence was even an accepted science in courtrooms.
I'm going to look that book up. That's very, very scary.


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Old 10-09-2011, 12:53 AM
 
1,328 posts, read 2,459,265 times
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I personally think capital punishment should only be used in cases involving a brutal death. The difference between murder and all those other crimes (child molestation, rape, kidnapping, armed robbery) is that, while those are all traumatizing events, the victims of those crimes all have the opportunity to make a full recovery with the right help and enough time (and can go on to lead long, fulfilling lives). On the other hand, a murder victim no longer exists and has no opportunity to make any kind of recovery.

If you take a life, you should lose yours. If you harm someone (but don't kill them), you should do time, but your life should not be taken because you haven't harmed them to the point of them no longer having the opportunity to recover.
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Old 10-09-2011, 08:02 AM
 
Location: Chambersburg PA
1,739 posts, read 1,764,750 times
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Well, a couple of things (as a former childhood sexual abuse victim and a loved one of a falsely accused RSO)
1) Too many people are falsely accused of these types of crimes. In many cases, people can make an accusation YEARS after they claim an incident happened
2) If aperson would have originally let the victim go, but now know they may be facing death, they're more likely to kill the victim
3) You can recover and even thrive after sexual abuse and/or rape. people so often (with good intentions) keep the victim a victim by saying such things like: "XXX ruined your life"
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Old 10-09-2011, 08:10 AM
 
Location: Sierra Vista, AZ
16,133 posts, read 20,864,875 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
I've heard some people even call for the death penalty for crimes such as child molestation, kidnapping, armed robbery or even just regular rape. Back in the Middle Ages and in many countries like China or Iran the list of capital crimes is indeed very long, from killing a Panda to being a homosexual, for instance.

I think it's for good reason that in the US, now the last remaining western democracy to have capital punishment, capital punishment is only really for first degree murder and treason. I've heard of a push to include the rape of minors as a capital crime in some states, and although I'm just as shocked as any others and I believe some pedophiles could potentially be murderers, the DP should strictly be for murder, if it has to be used (I'm against it in principle myself).

There seems to be no rational argument to execute rapists etc other than just appeals to the emotion. Yet such vengeful thinking is common and I find myself feeling it sometimes. I wouldn't go to the extent of advocating it, though.
If someone is sentenced to the rest of their life in prison, with no hope of parole, what is the purpose of keeping them alive?
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:25 AM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,683 posts, read 45,531,556 times
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Originally Posted by Boompa View Post
If someone is sentenced to the rest of their life in prison, with no hope of parole, what is the purpose of keeping them alive?
The idea of being locked away in a prison for the rest of my life would depress the hell out of me, but it's not a good argument for capital punishment. We're still taking a life. Perhaps those who preferred capital punishment over life imprisonment could choose that?
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Old 10-09-2011, 12:56 PM
 
Location: Sierra Vista, AZ
16,133 posts, read 20,864,875 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
The idea of being locked away in a prison for the rest of my life would depress the hell out of me, but it's not a good argument for capital punishment. We're still taking a life. Perhaps those who preferred capital punishment over life imprisonment could choose that?
But what is the purpose, they are never going to be released even if they are rehabilitated. If punisment has no purpose it is useless.
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Old 10-09-2011, 07:09 PM
 
28,206 posts, read 20,808,010 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boompa View Post
But what is the purpose, they are never going to be released even if they are rehabilitated. If punisment has no purpose it is useless.
Life in prison, with no possibility of parole, certainly is not useless. I believe it is a decent (not great) deterrent to some crimes. It's already been shown DP is not a good deterrent.
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Old 10-09-2011, 07:19 PM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,683 posts, read 45,531,556 times
Reputation: 11862
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boompa View Post
But what is the purpose, they are never going to be released even if they are rehabilitated. If punisment has no purpose it is useless.
Some people can life fulfilling lives in prison, as hard as it is for us on the outside to conceive of. It's more about keeping the rest of society safe from them, as much as it is 'paying them back' for what they did. The death penalty operates on the simple equation of a life for a life. We discourage our children from 'tit for tat' behaviour yet our supposedly more enlightened state sanctions it?
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Old 10-09-2011, 07:51 PM
 
Location: Sierra Vista, AZ
16,133 posts, read 20,864,875 times
Reputation: 8293
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trimac20 View Post
Some people can life fulfilling lives in prison, as hard as it is for us on the outside to conceive of. It's more about keeping the rest of society safe from them, as much as it is 'paying them back' for what they did. The death penalty operates on the simple equation of a life for a life. We discourage our children from 'tit for tat' behaviour yet our supposedly more enlightened state sanctions it?
Why should society go through the expense of maintaining them? The world is overcrowded and there are much more deserving people people out there. If they are never leaving prison why should we pay? Perhaps this bleeding heart liberal isn't enlightened enough to care. Donate their eyes
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