Death Penalty

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Toecutter, Aug 11, 2021.

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Should there be a death penalty?

  1. Yes

    5 vote(s)
    38.5%
  2. No

    8 vote(s)
    61.5%
  1. Dulci Daily

    Dulci Daily Members

    It's tempting, but misleading, to say that such-and-such horrible murderer deserves the death penalty, therefore he should receive the death penalty.

    Why is it misleading? Because, in terms of retribution for what they have done, offenders may deserve far worse penalties than human government could rightly impose. They may deserve to be tortured, raped, or whatnot, but that doesn't mean government should do such things to them; it shouldn't. Likewise, they may deserve to be killed, but that doesn't mean government should kill them if they can be safely allowed to live.

    And why is that? Because the purpose of government, when it works right, is to serve the public good in accordance with reason, not necessarily to give offenders the worst they deserve. What offenders deserve sets only a maximum limit for justly imposed punishment, not a minimum limit. If the death penalty will serve the public good in accordance with reason, it should be used; if not, not. And expressing malice or vengeance toward offenders for their horrible crimes, as such, is not the same as serving the public good in accordance with reason.
     
    Scarecrow13 likes this.
  2. scratcho

    scratcho Lifetime Supporter Lifetime Supporter

    I'll have to say that I would not entertain what the public good would be--not for a second--if someone raped and killed my little 3 year old grand son. If that horrible act occurred--as it did in the case I mentioned-- my job--my only job in life from that point on would be to find and kill the perpetrator in the swiftest manner possible. Perhaps I'm not as civilized as I should be. In my opinion, the state allows too many twisted, useless torturers, murderers ,etc, that bring horrendous misery to family members of the victims for the rest of their lives.
    And no, the government cannot be into torturing anyone for crimes.
     
  3. Dulci Daily

    Dulci Daily Members

    This is why, all things considered, it's wise to assign the duty of punishing offenders to government rather than to the vengeance of victims and their families. I do hope you'll never really be in a position to deserve to go to prison for murder in order to have the satisfaction of bumping off a horrible criminal--that is, if your non-judicial method of finding out who's the criminal is an entirely reliable one, which the methods of vigilantes and lynch mobs may well not be. But your statement is not really relevant to the death penalty, which could not--and should not--imaginably be described as "the swiftest manner possible" of killing the perpetrator.

    It's the death of the victim that brings the misery, not the life of the offender as such. "My misery will cease when, and only when, this horrible person is dead" is not a realistic belief, and it incorporates too much hatred to be acceptable.

    I certainly agree--but why not, according to your reasoning?
     
    scratcho likes this.
  4. scratcho

    scratcho Lifetime Supporter Lifetime Supporter

    Agree to disagree with you in part. I have my opinion of what my OWN behavior would be in the unlikely event I described and I am comfortable with it. You are correct that the government should ( and does) decide punishments for crimes committed. As I said--perhaps I'm not as civilized as i should be. I'm in the main, not in favor of vigilante justice because that just invites chaos and a democratic society cannot long stand with a citizenry exacting it's own brand of justice willy-nilly. We are in fact approaching just such a serious condition RIGHT NOW in this country. Vigilante justice was exemplified primarily in the south here for hundreds of years and still exists although not (quite) as physically evident as in the prior centuries. That statement can / could be disputed easily enough, I'm sure , by a large segment of our population.
     
  5. Vladimir Illich

    Vladimir Illich Lifetime Supporter Lifetime Supporter


    NO !!! Absolutely not. The function of ascribing punishment is that of an INDEPENDENT judiciary, Independent of government and/or government interference !!!

    And whilst we've been here before and discussed capital punishment, I still maintain that there are far too many mistakes to warrant capital punishment a suitable proposition.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2021
  6. Dulci Daily

    Dulci Daily Members

    Sorry to disappoint you, but the judicial branch ia one of the 3 branches of government, not independent of government. The possibility of mistakes is a reason for not imposng the death penalty, but not the only or the most important reason.
     
  7. Vladimir Illich

    Vladimir Illich Lifetime Supporter Lifetime Supporter


    That may be true in the US, but here in the uk, that is not so !!!
     
    hotwater likes this.
  8. Dulci Daily

    Dulci Daily Members

    So you're saying the UK judiciary is a non-governmental organization? If so, what is the source of its authority to impose punishments?
     
  9. Vladimir Illich

    Vladimir Illich Lifetime Supporter Lifetime Supporter

    The Judiciary is independent of Government but they implement justice according to Statute Law (which is set by Parliament) or case-law precedent (previous decisions of the supreme courts). There is also a Law Commission which 'advises' Government on legislation or raises issues with government to seek more legislation or reform existing legisalation.
     
  10. Dulci Daily

    Dulci Daily Members

    OK, I understand that in Britain you've got a narrower meaning of the word "government." For example, "Her Majesty's government" means the politicians in power, so a new "government" is formed when new politicians take over. In that sense, the judiciary is not, and should not be, part of "government."

    But Americans don't use the word "government" with that meaning. When we get new politicians elected, we don't get a new government, just new politicians in the same old government.

    The American meaning of "government," so far as I can tell, is something like "the aggregate of all organizations, consisting of executive, legislative, and judicial branches, that are supported by taxation and supposed to protect and promote the public good." In this sense, the judiciary is part of government, and the imposition of punishment by "government" is distinguished from private vengeance. Fair enough?
     
  11. Vladimir Illich

    Vladimir Illich Lifetime Supporter Lifetime Supporter


    Getting back on topic, whichever form of government Dulci darlin' Capital punishment = judicial murder, is not the sign of a civilised state.
     
    granite45 likes this.
  12. Dulci Daily

    Dulci Daily Members

    I don't much care about signs of a civilized state, but I do care about human life, even the life of the worst offenders. As I see it, both of two conditions would need to be fulfilled for the death penalty to be justifiably imposed: (1) the offender would have to deserve it, in terms of the seriousness and culpability of the offense and certainty of guilt, and (2) there would have to be no adequate alternative for protection of human life and society. The first condition is often fulfilled; the second, rarely if ever in developed societies.

    Capital punishment could often be considered "judicial murder," because it's often imposed without adequate justification. But I think it's too extreme to say it is always and everywhere unjustified. Consider an offender serving a life sentence for raping and murdering a victim, who escapes and commits another rape and murder. It is not necessary or appropriate to give the offender yet another chance to escape, rape, and kill. The right way to prevent the death penalty from being imposed on such a person is not to whine about how it's uncivilized or murderous to bump him off, but to prevent him from escaping in the first place.
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2021
  13. Vladimir Illich

    Vladimir Illich Lifetime Supporter Lifetime Supporter


    Precisely, such criminals need to be locked away for life without parole - give them time to ponder and perhaps regret their malfeasance
     

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