Monday, September 8, 2014

The Death Penalty


Last week, a death row inmate in North Carolina was released due to exonerating DNA evidence  after spending 30 years on Death Row! This made me think of all those people who say that death row inmates shouldn't get to spend years on Death Row before being executed, that there are too many appeals, that they should be executed sooner. If those people had their way, this innocent man would have already been dead.

After all, you can't free an innocent man when they're in the ground...

People tend to have very strong views on the subject of the death penalty, with some people strongly supporting it, while others vehemently opposing it. 

The vast majority of civilized nations on earth have banned the death penalty. The United States is actually among the very few industrialized nations left that still has it. 

So many questions come to mind when creating a dialogue about the death penalty. Is it a deterrent? Is "an eye for an eye" truly justice? Does a jury really have the right to decide who lives or dies? So many fascinating questions. 

What are your thoughts on the death penalty?

141 comments:

  1. I am for the death penalty ... also shorter sentences... have a ton to say on the subject ... but I will be good *wink* :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hello Keith,

    We would be of the view that to deprive a person of their freedom for the rest of their lives is punishment enough for any crime. The death penalty seems barbaric and we are not convinced that it acts as any greater deterrent than life imprisonment.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Sad that the legal system can't get it right either way.

    ReplyDelete
  4. With DNA evidence now available, it is certainly a compelling argument against the death penalty. I hate to use the term 'innocent,' however, because although a person may not be guilty of a death penalty crime, they're usually not innocent. But that's no reason to rush them to a death penalty. And also there are often botched collection of evidence. I do think that life without a possibility of parole is better. That gives lawyers an opportunity to find other evidence for their client. I also think that victims and victim's families need much more consideration than they are given. As I said before, often times death row inmates are chronically guilty of other crimes so should not be considered innocent.

    ReplyDelete
  5. In Australia we don't have the death penalty. Therefore it is very difficult to accept that taking someone's life is a valid punishment in any legal system.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I am against the death penalty and I cannot understand that the US is still one of the few countries which support the death penalty. Makes me sick.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I have mixed feelings about it. The victims of murderers did not get a chance to live, so I think the murders should not get a chance, either. But then there are the cases such as the one you mentioned, where innocent people are wrongly jailed and possibly killed.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I think the death penalty is just in the case of heinous crimes where there is no doubt who was the perpetrator (like when someone is caught in the act), but I do think the botched executions lately are proof that the government definitely is doing something wrong in handling the death penalty. If I ever had to be executed (let's say if I'm a missionary in a country with an oppressive regime), I'd prefer the firing squad.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Mixed feelings here. There are some people for whom the death penalty should be used....the guy who bombed the Boston marathon, for one. Why spend years on his 'defense' when he was caught red-handed for this heinous crime!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Wow, that is quite an amazing case. I'd hate to be the person who had to make the decision or the one to have to administer the death penalty.

    ReplyDelete
  11. This is such a difficult one, Keith. There have been many who have been wrongly accused, then there are those whose guilt is not at all debatable.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I am against the death penalty, no one has the right to take someone's life. I hope this poor man will gain peace after 30 years.

    ReplyDelete
  13. It seems simple to me. "Thou shalt not kill." "Two wrongs don't make a right."

    ReplyDelete
  14. I'm completely against the death penalty. Life can be so much worse than death, and death can never bring back those who are gone. I'd rather have the people suffer for the rest of their lives. I can understand why people are for it though. Depending on their reasons. I can understand people who don't want to support murderers with their taxes and keep them alive.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I'm glad I don't have to make those kinds of decisions....

    Cindy Bee

    ReplyDelete
  16. I have gone back and forth on this... I'm not sure how I feel... I guess since I'm not sure, how can we be sure of someone's guilt. We don't have it in Canada... so I can be on the fence :-/

    ReplyDelete
  17. I don't think we have the right to take another person's life, even if it is called "justice."

    ReplyDelete
  18. Hi Keith - hope you don't mind ... but I won't comment, and especially as we don't have the death penalty any more here ... it's been got wrong so often - the States has had a couple of those recently too ...

    I'm just not happy with it .. Hilary

    ReplyDelete
  19. Theoretically, I'm in favor of the death penalty for crimes of heinous cruelty. Practically speaking, however, statistics prove that people of color and with mental infirmities end up on Death Row more than any other people -- which proves our system of justice is imperfect. We don't always convict the right person, and certain people tend to get a death sentence more than others. So clearly the whole system is broken.

    ReplyDelete
  20. It tears me up when I hear of someone serving for years and then found not guilty. On the other hand people who do wrong should be punished. It's a hard question to answer.

    ReplyDelete
  21. I think we should do away with it all. Do we use punishment to put a fear in others. Well it ain't working.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Only if you are 100% sure of their guilt and that they did something truly horrid would I say give them the death penalty, other than that though I wouldn't, as just like this case you could put an innocent man to death.

    ReplyDelete
  23. We abolished the death penalty in Canada about 30 years ago. The most compelling argument against the death penalty is the undeniable existence of wrongful convictions. No innocent person should be executed in a civilized country.

    ReplyDelete
  24. I'm going to agree with what Pat said in the comment above me on this one.

    ReplyDelete
  25. I have mixed feelings... I hate that our tax money pays for criminals to stay in prisons for years and years (while we provide great food, TV's, free medical care, etc.).. The whole system is screwed up --just like a lot of other things in our country.. What about all of those privileged ones who do bad things yet get away with them???? What about all of our crooked judges??? More questions than answers. I don't know the answer to your question--and I wouldn't want to judge about someone's innocence or guilt---but something definitely needs to change in our system.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Wow. I was just thinking about writing a post about this. Mind if I write a response post to this rather than leave a thoughtful comment?

    ReplyDelete
  27. Absolutely against it, with the reason you mention being just one of many. How civilised a nation is can be judged by the way it treats it's prisoners. Some states in the US carry out executions, as do Somalian gunmen and ISIS.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I also understand that murder is, by definition, the pre-planned taking of another persons life, so therefore is the death penalty, and those that have carried it out should be tried as such.

      Delete
  28. I have mixed feelings about this. I definitely think the punishment fits the crime, but there are instances of innocent men being convicted. Either way our system is really screwed up.

    ReplyDelete
  29. The problem is, is that many juries go on a gut feeling. It should be a 100% package. Some people have even come clean about a murder, but later we find out they lied because they were interrogated for so long. It's so fishy.

    Part of me wants them to be executed because in some cases the crime is so horrible! Plus it's expensive to keep them in a cell for the ones that are 100% guilty.

    But more of me doesn't want them to be executed. People change. They do. As much as we might think they are crazy in the head for doing something horrible, they could change with therapy, and aging.

    I go back to what my Dad told me when I was little: Do unto others, as you'd like them to do unto you. The Golden Rule is so important.

    Now if I was on a jury where the person was say 100% guilty I'd have to say guilty. If it's the truth...what's a person to do?

    ReplyDelete
  30. Tough to really sum this up so maybe I'll throw in a question: is life in prison really more merciful than death? Sometimes I think comparing ourselves with other nations is unwise and even detrimental to the conversation. Bottom line is I don't honestly know the answer to this 100% of the time.

    ReplyDelete
  31. I think being locked up your entire life with no access to the things that make life worth living is the best punishment. You lose your life and live to experience it. Lifers for murder should be incarcerated in a plain cement box with three very plain meals, water, no window, no one to talk to, nothing to occupy themselves with until they fall over dead and rot. Of course, they should have the best medical treatment...we want them healthy while they think about what they have done.

    ReplyDelete
  32. wow, that is amazing, 30 years, oh my, what a waste, I live in Canada, no death penalty here, I know many who wish there was, I just would hate to see a person put to death by a decision based on anger, what a touchy subject, my my, I wonder if its not more punishing to live in confinement than have your life taken from you physically, I will honestly say I do not where I stand on this, I need to think about it, I wanted to thank you fo the kind words on my blog today, I see we are both talking of death today,

    ReplyDelete
  33. I don't know the answer to this one, and I see others are struggling with it, too. I was at a meeting recently that was about trying to fix our government/schools/youth at a local level. One of the things this organization strives to do is get police to give a youth a civil citation instead of an arrest for a first offense. It is cheaper for the taxpayer and better for the youth. The youth would then have to work a program instead of being sent to jail. The numbers that this group produces (from other places that use this program) suggest that the number of repeat offenders goes way down with civil citations, as opposed to up for those who are arrested. I think whenever you address the matters of crime, we need to start at the beginning. How can we reduce it among our youth? If we can do that, it makes sense that crime - across the board - will go down. And that is what everyone wants.

    ReplyDelete
  34. we have gained many advances in the case of DNA and this is helping those innocently convicted in the case of the person you've mentioned here

    although I don't condone killing others, I also don't think society should have to pay for imprisoning those guilty for life with costs the way they are, I think prisoners should have to earn their keep, just as I think those on welfare and food stamps should have to work to obtain those services, except in the case of the severely handicapped I think any of those folks can contribute something even if it's helping their next door neighbor or picking up litter on highways, doing paperwork for those who are blind, any number of things they could do in exchange for food stamps or welfare. I also think those on welfare should be drug tested.

    I think many of our laws are too lenient and criminals often have more rights than those not committing crimes. Sometimes those imprisoned are living better than those not imprisoned, they have three meals a day, a roof over their head and free medical care which many citizens who have not committed crimes do not have and wish they did.

    I think lenient sentences lead to more and more crime, as in the case of the illegals who committed murder and now (through a technicality of the law) are released up to 160 of them.

    Still other criminals commit blue collar crimes embezzling or robbing others of all their life savings and in ten or less years they are let out to live high on the hog off of the money they stole.

    in many cases government has become too cumbersome for it's own good when the government is doing studies on how to cook marshmallows and people need food and jobs there is much wrong with that society.

    ReplyDelete
  35. I think this is horrific… the thought of spending so much time and being innocent… oh gosh. My first instinct is NO! I don't think anyone should have to be put to death! But then you hear the horrific stories… so I suppose, yes, if you are 100% certain that you have the right person, there are some instances where it is just… tough topic today, Keith!!!

    ReplyDelete
  36. I worked in law enforcement for 25 years and have seen my share of people heading to San Quentin and death row. The courts and juries sent them there. Then there are years and years of appeals. It's the system. Until the system is changed that's what we have.

    You can euthanize a dog or cat with no issues at all, but to put someone to death seems to be such a difficult process. I'm guessing this is being done on purpose.

    Have a fabulous day. :)

    ReplyDelete
  37. I really don't like the death penalty. I find it horrific, and imagine those who are genuinely innocent

    ReplyDelete
  38. In Canada, we used to have the death penalty, but it got abolished a very long time ago. In the case of Theodore Robert Bundy, it was proven that he did commit those horrific crimes and was finally put to death via the electric chair. I think that if it is proven that the person committed the crimes, even though I may not like the death penalty, one thing is for certain...that person can never, ever harm another human being again. How many times I have heard it happen that the prisoner escapes, only to kill again???

    ReplyDelete
  39. The death penalty creeps me out. I don't like it one bit.To me, it feels so wrong to put someone to death who is not already dying. I know people want justice, but many innocent people have died this way.

    ReplyDelete
  40. Tough topic. And the more I think about what to write in my comment the less I know what to think about the whole subject. I'd say death penalty is never ever the way to go. But then in countries where they don't have it, they release those people that did kill somebody after 15 years and they will do it again... I don't think humans should ever decide if another human is allowed to live, but does it mean we can let others kill another human being? What is the right punishment or treatment for those people otherwise? I must honestly say I do not have an answer. I guess that always depends on the situation but I refuse to believe there is no better way than killing somebody in return. I have a hard time not having an answer what my opinion is on this, but I must admit I truly do not know what to think about it, especially since we can never be sure it's somebody innocent. How can we judge our legal systems when we don't have answers ourselves?

    ReplyDelete
  41. It seems too often that innocent people sit behind bars until technology is able to free them. Too many mistakes are made along with over zealous prosecutors trying to make a name for themselves. I used to believe in the death penalty, but not so much anymore.

    ReplyDelete
  42. As with many issues, there are lots of "greys" around the subject. I was vehemently against the death penalty for years, and still have a strong gut feeling that to take a life solves nothing and is fundamentally wrong unless the person wishes to die. On the other hand, the person(s) responsible for the recent beheadings of two journalists.. well, let's just say my views are shaken. But, if we are to end up with a compassionate society.. ugh.. I hate the mixture of conflicting emotions roaming through my head. Sometimes, hard and fast rules/laws just don't work.

    ReplyDelete
  43. I'm against the Death Penalty for moral issues. You can't get a right with two wrongs.

    Hugs,
    JB

    ReplyDelete
  44. In my opinion death penalty is the correct form of punishment for heinous crimes. And yes, it does have a deterrent effect.

    ReplyDelete
  45. I am against it! The bible says "Do Not Kill".

    ReplyDelete
  46. I am against the death penalty. How can we pass the ultimate judgment and decide who lives and who dies? Killing as a remedy to killing, I don't get it.

    ReplyDelete
  47. I think death is not a penalty, but a freedom to exit. Realization could be the best punishment and prison should be the places make it possible with certain things. Death penalty is the thought that comes first in anger of anguish but I don’t it is the only to stop crimes happening around.

    ReplyDelete
  48. Loaded question! We don't have the death penalty here in Canada but i recall someone being in prison for many years and DNA testing cleared him. The sad thing is that often the police feel the heat from the media and public and others to solve the crime so they blame someone without great evidence-circumstantial. If someone is famous or has money, they often get away with murder when they shouldn't. Unfortunately bigotry can play a roll as well as so many have been placed in jail and it was only due to the colour of their skin. I am someone that, if the bodies are literally found in the basement, there is nothing circumstantial about it, they will never stop and admit to the heinous crime then I would not even have them stay for a long time in prison (like Charles Manson) but have them executed right away. I know, sounds cruel but this could only be in serial killer ways or such savagery that it is the best for the victim's family. Sharon Tate's sister still has to attend Charles Manson's parole hearings and that is horrific. Unfortunately they place people on death row for something much less and I don;t get it

    ReplyDelete
  49. Unfortunately, capital offenses put society in the awkward position of having to defend itself. If there is some deterrent more humane than a death penalty, it doesn't seem to be forthcoming.

    ReplyDelete
  50. hoo boy- tough question and no easy answer. If a person is found guilty of murder then that person should be sentenced to LIFE in prison with NO chance of parole, no hearings nothing. If new evidence comes up such as DNA then of course they are entitled to a new trial.
    But meanwhile that person should be expected to work while in prison not watching TV and working out in a gym.

    ReplyDelete
  51. Wouldn't it be so lovely if people could act responsibly and we wouldn't have to debate this question? How sad that we live in a world where there is such violence

    ReplyDelete
  52. I am an Englishman, and I'm proud of any Government that death is not answer.

    ReplyDelete
  53. I would say I am in agreement with the death penalty for horrible crimes-why should it take 30 years to find out the truth-that needs to be fixed for sure

    ReplyDelete
  54. I do not believe in the death penalty. I think it is wrong in so many ways.

    Have a beautiful week, Keith.

    ~Sheri

    ReplyDelete
  55. Anyone who supports the death penalty is either callous or hasn't bothered thinking about it in detail. It is not a deterrent and two wrongs do not make a right. Never will.

    ReplyDelete
  56. I personally didn't have an opinion on the issue until I had an opportunity to work with a non-profit organization that worked on abolishing the death penalty and another that worked with families of victims who opposed the death penalty. i was introduced to a perspective that i agreed with and have opposed the death penalty since.

    ReplyDelete
  57. I used to be a huge proponent for the death penalty but with things like this being found out, the DA's knowing they have the wrong people on trial and not caring because they just want to win a case, the cops and detectives badgering people into confessing and all sorts of other things wrong with our justice system, I have changed my mind on this subject.

    ReplyDelete
  58. While some think it's a deterrent, I don't think it really is. Life imprisonment isn't that fun either. And a vast majority don't expect to get caught. Though the vast majority do get caught.

    Though I'm not super opinionated on it, I think it should be eliminated. I always find it funny that it's right wingers who are for super-texas death sentences. Yet fake a fear of "big government" when Democrats are in power.

    You know they can't be that scary if they can't send you to the grave.

    ReplyDelete
  59. I agree with Mary Kirkland. I do believe in the death penalty. We need to keep criminals in prison that harm other people. The dui's, drug charges and non violent criminals don't need to be in there.
    With DNA the way it is today, I think it's pretty right on.
    Cheri

    ReplyDelete
  60. I am against it. And glad that we don't have it any longer. There is some evidence that suggests that the last person executed here in Australia was, if not precisely innocent, not guilty of the crime for which he died.

    ReplyDelete
  61. Never have believed in the death penalty. I never bought into the "eye for an eye". If there were only one case of a wrong person being convicted it would be enough to abolish that penalty. However, there seems to be someone every day being released with today's new science proving them innocent. Incarcerated, of course, killed, no.

    ReplyDelete
  62. I used to be somewhat neutral and/or more in favor of the death penalty. Now I'm staunchly opposed. A number of people (mostly Blacks) have spent decades in jail and on death row, I believe, for someone else's crimes. Moreover, it's disturbingly inhumane.

    Did you see Dead Man Walking, Keith? Sean Penn did an amazing job in that movie. It was very thought-provoking.

    ReplyDelete
  63. I tend to be in favor of the death penalty, but - as you said - mistakes have been made due to swift justice. There's no doubt that innocent people have been executed.

    Incidentally, my great uncle Frederick Lang was executed in 1909 (in New Jersey) for murder. He was definitely guilty. Numerous appeals kept him alive for nearly three years after the crime (which happened in 1906).

    ReplyDelete
  64. If it was a deterrent there would not be so many people on death row. However if judges and juries have the power to send someone to gaol for life, I don't see why they cannot decide to take someone's life. But then a wrongly imprisoned person can be freed and compensated. A dead person cannot. I am fairly certain that if the vast number of people were not black, the death penalty would have been abolished some time ago.

    ReplyDelete
  65. I think that those who flick the switch per se, are as guilty as the accused.

    Give them hard labour instead.

    ReplyDelete
  66. Such a touchy subject...I have two very strong opinions...if your state has the death penalty it should be enforced...asap to save tax dollars. Personally, I would rather die than live in prison, so I happen to believe that life in prison is a lot worse punishment than death.

    ReplyDelete
  67. I write crime fiction. As such, I study criminal psychology and read about many types of crime and criminals. My own belief is there are crimes where the death penalty is warranted. But I know if were on that jury, the accused would need to stand up and swear that he committed the crime, was glad he did, and would do it again to someone else before I would be willing to mark the guilty box. I do believe it is used too often. That's an issue for the lawmakers, not the courts. The court enforces the law.

    ReplyDelete
  68. for the longest time i was a proponent of it...but that was an uneducated choice...if you look at the stats...it is not a deterent to crime...not beyond the one person...it takes so long to process that it makes little if any impact...and what do we prove? that we can take a life too?

    ReplyDelete
  69. If you've seen an old electric chair, you'll know it is a barbaric device. An uncle of mine worked for the police department and I saw one. I wouldn't want to see that revived, it belongs in a horror movie. Some crimes, however, justify harsh penalties.

    ReplyDelete
  70. Hi Keith. I'm torn on the issue. There are definitely individuals deserving of death for unspeakable, heinous crimes. But our system isn't perfect, as nothing really can be.

    ReplyDelete
  71. I really believe there are some people who shouldn't be in this world. It's not about vengeance. It's about them being human monsters. However, even with that, I don't like how the death penalty is applied in this country. Like the rest of the penal system, it's applied to people of color at unjust extremes. The fact that there have been innocent people executed by the justice system is horrifying and why we should not have the death penalty any longer.

    ReplyDelete
  72. I'm divided over this issue Keith ~ I think some deserved it, while I think others are not deserving this and should be given a chance ~ Criminals with violent records & deeds, and who are not remorseful of their deeds, should be punished with death penalty ~ Those whose deeds are questionable and those who are turning a new leaf, should be given a chance ~

    ReplyDelete
  73. I just tried to comment so you might get this twice! If someone murdered my son, I would want them put to death. I couldn't handle living and knowing that whoever took my sons life was still out there living their life, no matter how shitty that life may be. That person also better hope the police find them before I did.. Anyway, if I was murdered I would want that person to sit in jail until they died of natural causes.

    ReplyDelete
  74. I don't think everyone can be rehabilitated. I truly believe there are monsters that walk amongst us without a conscience, without the ability to be truly human. That being said, I don't really support the death penalty because there could always be an innocent person waiting to be executed. And that being said, I don't believe some people can be let out into society. What is the answer to all this? What is the right way to carry out justice? How should people atone? I truly don't know. When I hear about a horrific crime, my knee jerk reaction is to say 'hang 'em', but when I calm down, I think life in prison is the better way. This is a very difficult topic, and I have a hard time getting off the fence for either side. Mind you, if someone I loved was a victim, I'd probably feel like so many people that support the death penalty. At least for a good long while. Let's just say that unless you've been directly affected by a horrible crime, and dealt with such grief, it's hard to truly know where you stand.

    ReplyDelete
  75. Depends on if the evidence is clear cut or not

    ReplyDelete
  76. I believe in the death penalty in some special cases. Like for serial killers or some vicious killing crimes and where the evidence is overwhelming.

    ReplyDelete
  77. I'm on the vehemently opposed side. The death penalty says a lot about us and how violent we are.

    ReplyDelete
  78. I'm 100% against the death penalty. Killing is wrong.

    ReplyDelete
  79. I wonder if we were to ask victims' families of violent crimes what they thought about the death penalty before the crime had been committed versus afterwards what their answers would be and if their answers would have changed after the tragic event. Personally, I told hubby that if I was a victim of a violent crime and death penalty was an option, I would rather have the person spend life in prison with no possibility of parole. I think it would save money in the long run that try to go through all the appeals a death sentence carries with it.

    betty

    ReplyDelete
  80. Interesting thoughts. I don't have a problem with the death penalty per say, but I mean it's not like the issue ends there. There are so many variables, so many things that could go wrong. It's a hard issue to deal with. Always was, always will be.

    ReplyDelete
  81. I may be one of the few Texans opposed to the death penalty. It's way too expensive. If the cost of executing versus life sentence without parole was publicized, I think more people would be against it.

    ReplyDelete
  82. This is truly a question that is extremely complicated. I have mixed emotions on it...

    ReplyDelete
  83. For me it depends on the crime. Against kids and animals (the defenseless)? Murder? Robbery? What kind of evidence. Technology is much better these days, so yeah 30 years is a long time to wait but what kind of changes to testing have come along since then? I also don't think some violent offenders can be rehabilitated and should they really live "in comfort" on my dime? It really depends. But you should read that book I told you about.

    ReplyDelete
  84. It would be wonderful if our world was perfect, if no child was ever tortured, raped and murdered; if no girl was ever taken captive and held for many years, the whole time being raped over and over again, tortured, forced to give birth; if pain, torture, cruelty, and senseless murder never existed.
    But this is not the case. Should people who commit such heinous crimes, especially against children, be allowed to live? I do not believe so. It breaks my heart to even imagine what torturous cruelty a child goes through at the hands of these kinds of people, some who do it over and over again until stopped. They are heartless, have no empathy, and, if ever given a chance, would continue to do the same again. These people do not deserve to live. If any of you looked upon the body of your child, tortured, maybe cut apart, raped, living their last moments only knowing cruelty and pain, would you be so open to letting that monster live?
    I would not.

    ReplyDelete
  85. I just wrote a long eloquent comment, but your blog ate it.
    To summarize, people who commit many of the crimes mentioned above are not wired like regular people and I doubt the fear of the death penalty deters them from committing crimes. But I went on to say that the ones executed don't usually commit additional murders, so in a sense the death penalty was a deterrent.

    ReplyDelete
  86. Punishment for "wrong" is appropriate . . .
    "Eye for an eye" . . . not for me.
    But the answer, I haven't a clue.
    Wrong is wrong . . .

    ReplyDelete
  87. I am against death penalty but yes life imprisonment in its place. I construe this way, more humane and just act of human. thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  88. An eye for an eye and the whole world goes blind.

    The death penalty is nothing short of barbaric.

    ReplyDelete
  89. Let's just say I believe in an eye for an eye but only when they're caught red-handed. I don't believe in people "reaching" a verdict or concluding that someone has to be guilty, if you know what I mean.

    ReplyDelete
  90. I'm with Blue. No surprise there, my Blue Buddy. If there is video, DNA, more than one eye witness to the crime then I say it's justifiable. Then again, I'm for cutting off the private parts of people who molest kids too.

    ReplyDelete
  91. I try not to think about it .
    Not a very good answer is it , but true.
    But now that I "am" thinking about it ~
    I wonder if death is indeed the easy way out for someone that has done
    such a horrendous thing ?

    ReplyDelete
  92. Killing is killing whether by an individual or the State I'm opposed! Though shalt not kill

    ReplyDelete
  93. I think life imprisonement is far better than death penalty...people who commit atrocious crimes, very cruel ones should be locked away forever...but our system is skewed...innocent people will suffer while the guilty roams around free as a cloud.....i dont support death penalty....noobdy has the right to take a life...nobody....

    ReplyDelete
  94. I'm against the death penalty. We don't have it in the UK. People can change and should be allowed the chance to change while in prison, also there is the chance that someone who is innocent is given the death sentence and then as you say there's no way to overturn that once they're dead...

    ReplyDelete
  95. What thoughtful responses! I'm afraid I'm on the fence on this one.

    ReplyDelete
  96. 30 years is a long time. I wonder how different everything felt to that person on their first day of freedom.

    ReplyDelete
  97. I just wrote a big answer and lost it, and cannot begin to re write it....oh well.....I think this is a touch subject for sure. The justice system is truly broken and I do know that I do not believe in eye for an eye...so that being said I guess if I had to make the decision...I would choose life in prison over death penalty. I have always believed that the true problem lies in the family and home where the foundation for integrity is formed. So many of the people that end up in prison are there because of substance abuse, and having had so many family members with these problems, it has made me more compassionate to these struggling people. I love the way you always make us search ourselves and what we truly believe....always thought provoking indeed.

    ReplyDelete
  98. I used to be for the death penalty - thinking of some of the poor victims of some seriously heinous crimes. But as I've grown older, I have changed my views. I think that as a civilized society, we can't play God, we have to leave true justice to the powers that be, not only because of the possibility of error, but because two wrongs don't make a right. It is also expensive and taxing to society and the victims to go through all the appeals. Every soul is redeemable and although we should not release heinous criminals onto society, we should have a compassionate stance as an evolved society, towards giving every soul a chance at redemption. Even a life in prison can be a life with lessons learned. Taking a life for any reason is barbaric. We need to evolve towards a better way and spend more time and energy preventing crime by raising children properly with love. As a society we send a powerful message with violent television shows, video games,and publications that glorify guns, drugs, sex and violence. When we correlate these types of things with reflections of crime rates, maybe we can finally see the light. Crime and criminals are a true reflection of our society's failings. The death penalty is another failing - do we think of ourselves as better than societies that stone people to death or cut their heads off? We are just the same if we condone the death penalty - Karen

    ReplyDelete
  99. I'm torn. I don't want the innocent to be in prison, and I don't want the guilty freed. Torn.

    ReplyDelete
  100. Agreeing with Blue on this one too. Only when proven without a shadow of a doubt, I fully support the death penalty.

    ReplyDelete
  101. I think it should be used. Some people cannot be redeemed.

    ReplyDelete
  102. I live about ten miles from this prison where the man had been for thirty years. I cried for this man and his family when I heard the entire story on the news.

    ReplyDelete
  103. I have a problem with killing people for the crime of killing people. Like Sweet Marie, I cried too. It was very sad how 30 yrs of their lives were stolen from them

    ReplyDelete
  104. It's pretty frightening how many falsely accused people are on death row, while killers like Charles Manson have been living long lives in prison.

    Julie

    ReplyDelete
  105. I have always been against it (I remember arguing against it in Junior High). A few years ago everyone was on the pro-bandwagon, but it seems that the debate is shifting now due to injustices in our system. For those who argue that the Bible allows for the capital punishment should also argue that police officers and district attorneys who make-up or withhold evidence along with witnesses that lie should also be subjected to the ultimate punishment (that's also in the laws of the Hebrew scriptures)

    ReplyDelete
  106. All I can say is that it gave me shivers .... Dunno if it is right or wrong ...

    ReplyDelete
  107. We haven't had the death penalty in Canada since 1976. What a chilling thought that some innocent men spend many years on death row! Have you watched the TV show Rectify (on Netflix)? It's about that very issue. It's so good.

    ReplyDelete
  108. The last executions in Canada were in 1962.

    ReplyDelete
  109. Holy Toledo, Keith! You certainly don't hesitate to tackle the big ones! I absolutely am against the death penalty. I have a visceral reaction to it every time. So much so, that I sometimes wonder if I was executed (hung) wrongly in a previous life (even though I find the idea of reincarnation implausible). How many innocent people have been executed in the name of "Justice?" Some people may have to be incarcerated for life without parole because of their crimes, but better that than execute an innocent person.

    ReplyDelete
  110. That's one controversial topic! I don't like the idea of the death penalty. If they did the crime, they should have to live with the remorse of having done it (if they aren't insane sociopaths and are capable of feeling remorse).

    ReplyDelete
  111. The death penalty is a very barbaric act. I would like to think that we humans have evolved enough to feel that the death penalty is in our past.

    ReplyDelete
  112. I think in some cases there is no other way to deal with a horrendous crime :( My solution to the death penalty would build a prison in the Antarctica for people who deserve a death penalty...there are things worse than death.

    ReplyDelete
  113. I'm for the death penalty ONLY IF there is incontrovertible, undeniable, no-sh** evidence that they did the crime. That being said, I'm pretty sure that most death penalty cases would not fit that bill. So, life without the chance of parole at hard labor would satisfy me.

    ReplyDelete
  114. holy moly that is intense
    innocent and 30 years of death row
    my goodness!
    i was almost a juror this week and it is not a good feeling, for just this reason. what if the decision is wrong!

    ReplyDelete
  115. Canada's last execution was in 1962. Thankfully that era is over for us now.

    ReplyDelete
  116. When someone spends 30 years on death row for a crime they didn't commit, they should be rewarded somehow once they're exonerated. Set up in a free house with $100,000 to live on until they get up to speed or something. Maybe free college tuition. It just seems wrong that the legal system just says, "Oops, we made a mistake. Sorry. We'll release you now." and that's it.

    ReplyDelete
  117. I have very mixed feelings. I don't know how much of a deterrent it is.

    ReplyDelete
  118. I have mixed feeling on the death penalty - but it goes both ways. Sometimes innocent people become the victims of predators that were let off. I'm not sure if one is worse than the other. It's all an imperfect balance.

    ReplyDelete
  119. I think I'm against death penalties. Keyword think. Staying in jail for life would be horribly unpleasant so any crimes would be justified, as well as any unguilty prisoners would have the opportunity to be proven innocent. It's still not very fair for those who aren't guilty and have to go through years of jail time, but what can be done. That poor man. I'm glad he was released in time.

    ReplyDelete
  120. I don't think it is a deterrent at all..not even a tiny bit. I can't say I am for or against it..but time in jail doesn't seem to work either, so this is a stumper for me.

    ReplyDelete
  121. i'm not a big supporter, but i don't feel bad when a blatantly evil murderer with tons of proof of his deeds is executed. i wish there was a better way before all the evil set into him...

    always such thought provoking questions!

    ReplyDelete
  122. In a crime which is absolutely totally proven that it was done by the man/woman in death row, I believe that person deserves and should be given the death penalty. With today's forensics, there should be no doubt of guilt or no guilt.

    ReplyDelete
  123. In some cases, it's very hard not to picture the perpetrator as unworthy of continued existence.

    I don't know, I really don't. I think the way we view imprisonment and punishment has gotten seriously out of whack with our picture of ourselves and our country...

    Pearl

    ReplyDelete
  124. It's just wrong. Absolutely, they should do away with this.

    ReplyDelete
  125. This is too sensitive a subject... no comment. We'd have to sit around a table and talk about it...

    ReplyDelete
  126. We have no problem killing bears, wolves and any other human predator, so why should it be any different for killers that are human? The only hesitation I have is the corruption in the justice system and in people's minds, too many innocent people end up falsely accused.

    ReplyDelete
  127. I don't agree with it for this very reason, and I believe the act of putting people on death row is very close to revenge which always makes me think of the an eye for an eye quote - it doesn't bring your loved one back and if I was in that position it would make me feel so much worse knowing there was more death in the world. I also worry about things like this happening, where others have been framed for heinous crimes and it's ruined their lives and they've been killed for their innocence - it doesn't seem right to me. - Tasha xxx

    ReplyDelete
  128. This is a question that I agonize over. When I see such appalling acts of brutality on TV, I am overcome with anger and a longing for justice in the form of "an eye for an eye"...but then I read of executions that were carried out in the past and the person was later proved innocent...well, that is so tragic.
    So to sum up...I'd have to say I disagree with the death penalty. We cannot afford to have even one more mistake like that.

    ReplyDelete
  129. I think instead of leaving them to suffer....do the DNA testing sooner. Set 'em free.

    ReplyDelete
  130. I had heard about this - and am glad that they released this gentleman. It's such a shame that he was there so long. I think DNA testing should be done all the time to avoid similar situations.

    ReplyDelete
  131. I'm against the death penalty. But I do think that laws could be tougher on crime. So much focus is on criminals' rights that victims often go unrecognized. What about compassion for victims and their families?

    The justice system isn't always fair. Some get away with murder because of loopholes and technicalities. Also, rehabilitation doesn't work with everyone. Some criminals have no remorse and unfortunately return to crime once they get out of jail.

    More needs to be done to prevent crime and protect victims. To be honest, I think sometimes there is too much leniency and justification for crime. People can choose between right and wrong. And even those from difficult life circumstances can rise above them and become better people instead of turning to crime. Yet society makes excuses for them.

    You also have to put yourself in the victim's shoes. How would you feel if you or someone you loved was the victim of a crime? Your perspective may be different in that case.

    ReplyDelete
  132. It's never okay to kill another person. I'm glad Australia doesn't have the death penalty. We were pretty half hearted about it when we did. When I have Philosophy students researching this for a talk, I'm always horrified at the new info they come up with. Countries with the death penalty have often been accused of killing the innocent--not a lot different to Islamic State killing the innocent. Barbaric on both camps.

    ReplyDelete
  133. Hello Kieth!:) So sorry I'm late in commenting, but I have fallen behind with my visits and now am trying to catch up.

    If there was an easy solution to this problem, I guess it would have been put in place by now, but one has to ask oneself, Is there less crime in a country with the death penalty than a country without!
    Warm Regards.

    ReplyDelete
  134. Problem is, can the jury and judge really be 100% sure that someone is guilty? And the idea of killing another person, even a criminal, is so horrible. Not a job I would want to do.

    ReplyDelete
  135. I guess I'm not for the death penalty, but what I think would be good is if inmates would have to work to pay for their upkeep somehow. I know they do that in some parts of the country, but then other people are against it as unfair. Then again, wasn't what the inmates did unfair? Hmmm... Is this eye for an eye?

    ReplyDelete
  136. I'm kinda in between on this. I just feel like there has to be DNA type evidence, no doubt that they are guilty before you can use the death penalty. There are a lot of interesting shows on Netflix I've been watching about these types of things. One of my favorites is Forensic Files. When there is Forensic evidence against someone it's almost an entirely different thing. I think that is a good show to watch because they cover so much and you can learn how they actually find solid evidence. I am glad that they saved that mans life before it was too late. We just haven't always had the proper tools to convict people properly, and that is sad.

    ReplyDelete
  137. This one's a doozy. I do think about it a lot but can't seem to make a firm decision one way or the other. I feel strongly on both sides. If there is a clear DNA connection to the murder, I don't think I'd be opposed. Why should society pay to imprison this person for life? At the same time, I would never want to be the person who makes the decision to put someone to death. But then again, what if it was someone I loved who was killed? Tough, touchy topic.

    ReplyDelete
  138. I believe in the death penalty only if DNA proof is provided .. I would not want to be on the jury though! Is that weird?

    ReplyDelete