Luckily, this kind of police corruption has never ever happened…

Luckily, this kind of police corruption has never ever happened… April 20, 2015

with capital crimes, resulting in innocent people going to death row.

Oh, wait!

Commitment to the death penalty, at the end of the day, means “Better the innocent should be murdered by the state than mercy be shown to the guilty.”  On this day when we remember that Jesus Christ has conquered death, let us no more be apostles of death in our culture.  End the death penalty.

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  • Ending the death penalty is one of the few issues where you and I are in agreement. However, I don’t use this particular argument. I believe that we should show mercy, even to those who are undeniably guilty.

    • chezami

      So do I. But the argument against killing innocents is also valid.

    • Hezekiah Garrett

      I don’t think you understood the particular argument, given your commentary.

      • Yes, I understand the argument, but if even the guilty are shown mercy, the argument is superfluous.

  • Andy

    We have set up a system of jurisprudence that relies only on winning – not on determining guilt or innocence. Many death penalty supporters put their trust in the science of forensics and the government to do the science correctly and dispassionately – these by the way are the same folks often who are critical of the government in most other areas except maybe the military.
    The need for mercy, the need for recognizing that only God knows true guilt or innocence plus the way our system is organized and used are clearly why we must condemn the continued existence of the death penalty.

  • Faced with the evil of the Boston Bombers and their family; I am tempted once again to the death penalty, but have an idea that I believe fits both the human need for justice and God’s need to be involved, in very extreme cases:

    When the motive is political, and you have more than 10 counts of murder in a single act of terrorism, I believe it is right and just to impose a sentence of “Death by Hard Labor”, at a rate of 10 years of hard labor for every count of murder, with health reports handed to the press at regular intervals.

    • Newp Ort

      So the idea is to work them to death? That is cruel, vengeful, and kind of insane.

      Is there any reason behind this idea other than “We want to see them suffer!”?

      • So was the crime, which is kind of the point.

        That and it fulfills the “protect the innocent in society” by ensuring the prisoner will never have enough energy at the end of the day to attempt an escape.

        • Newp Ort

          Why should we respond to brutality with brutality?

          • Because failing to respond in justice to incidents of brutality encourages more brutality. The laws of England may be bad, but if we cut them all down like they did the trees, can anybody stand in the wind of injustice which will then blow?

            What we can do, however, is give God and the convicted a chance at repentance, and us, a chance at forgiveness or admitting that we were wrong. Death by Hard Labor may make for a short life, but depending on how the convicted responds to it, need not necessarily be so. God may grant even a guilty man the strength to survive many such 10 year sentences, while still insuring a measure of justice to those who had to live with the effects of his crimes.

            We all will end up in the same place eventually- the peace of the grave.

            • kenofken

              Dude, that sounds more than a little Khmer Rouge. Mind you, I like a good weeding of the rice field as much as the next man, but I’m not sure it colors entirely within the lines of your religion’s theology on just punishment!

              • Unlike the Khmer Rouge, mine is based on past actions of the individual. Pol Pot was trying to eliminate anybody who opposed him even intellectually, I’m trying to give God and Justice a chance at redeeming a terrorist through hard work.

                It’s specifically related to one Dzhokhar Anzorovich “Jahar” Tsarnaev, who under this plan deserves 170 years of hard labor, and for whom the quick trip to Paradise of a lethal injection is, at the very least, unjust.

  • Newp Ort

    From the 1977 reinstatement of the death penalty to 2000, Illinois executed 12 people. Over that same time span 13 death row inmates were released after appeals when exonerating evidence came to light.

    25 sentenced to death. 12 executed. 13 wrongly convicted and later freed.

    Looking at those numbers it is entirely possible, even likely, that my home state has executed an innocent man.

    Governor George Ryan was a convicted criminal for racketeering, bribery, extortion, money laundering and tax fraud, among other things. The man was a scumbag crook, but man was he right to put a moratorium on the death penalty in 2003. He also commuted all death row inmates to life in prison.

    His actions also paved the way for the death penalty to be abolished in Illinois in 2011.

    • kenofken

      I think old George was trying to make points with some of his future spotters in the prison workout yards! 🙂 And to leave a legacy that had SOME positive side to it. Really who is better poised to make politically courageous/reckless leaps than a guy shipping out to the DOC? I sometimes think Illinois should just recruit its governors straight from prison, have them work from an office on the inside, and pardon them if they achieve certain benchmarks.

      At any rate, the Illinois statistics are the basis for my opposition to the death penalty. To even make a reasonable case for the death penalty, you need a system which is essentially 100% error free. In reality, it is so slipshod as to be almost completely random. Making the indicted play Russian roulette would achieve a better approximation of justice. The barrel bombs Assad drops on neighborhood market days probably don’t do much worse at killing actual capital criminals vs innocents. I was a journalist for a good many years, and I’m not exaggerating in the least when I say that wealthy suburbanites got more due process in a fence height zoning case than men on trial for their lives got.

  • kirthigdon

    Once again, I will recommend the book Death and Justice, former LAPD detective Mark Fuhrman’s detailed study of capital cases in the jurisdiction of Oklahoma City. He describes himself as “shaken” by the discovery of collusion between the DA and the CSI technicians to falsify evidence to frame people accused of murder. His study changed him from a supporter to an opponent of the death penalty.

    Kirt Higdon