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View Poll Results: Should McVeigh's Execution Be Broadcast?

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  • No execution should be broadcast.

    41 66.13%
  • Yes - all execution's should.

    13 20.97%
  • Yes, but only in his case.

    8 12.90%
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  1. #26
    Serial Publisher silver trophy aspen's Avatar
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    depravity huh?

    Well you can have your opinion - and thats fine I won't call you barbaric for it. You want to pretend its possible to live in a utopia keep on dreaming.

    In my opinion there is no action which can be done that would be enough against Timothy McVeigh. You could torture him for 1000 years if such a thing were possible and he would not have felt enough pain.

    Why do punishments exist? They exist to discourage people from breaking the rules.

    Currently the highest form of punishment is death. Clean and simple. And this form of punishment isn't enough to deter people from these horrible acts. They will die for their cause.

    Thats why, for these people, I think torture is appropriate. They may be ready to die but are they prepared to be tortured every day for the rest of their lives? Are they prepared to be kept on the brink of death in inhuman pain?

    Call me barbaric all you want but whatever it takes to stop someone from setting off a bomb that kills thousands, or maybe someone who gets a nuclear bomb that kills millions, whatever it takes to stop these people from doing this.

    I dont think Timothy McVeigh should be tortured because of some sort of revenge or retribution. I think he should be tortured as an example. Say to all the potential terrorists out there that if you want to kill so many people you're not going to have an easy way out. You're going to feel the pain you rained down on those people you killed, you're going to feel the pain their families will feel for the rest of their lives.

    Punishments do not exist to get revenge on the perpetrator. They exist to discourage.

    Torturing him will not bring back 168 people. But torturing him might save the lives of 168 people who have not yet been killed.

    This reminds me of a interesting question usually asked in ethics classes.

    If you went back in time and saw Hitler before his rise to power and had the opportunity to do so would you kill him? Knowing what he would become and how many deaths he would cause would you do it?

    There are 2 kinds of people - the ones that would and the ones that wouldn't.

    I would. Sid - you wouldn't.

    We're different.

    But I don't call you barbaric for your beliefs.
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  2. #27
    Serial Publisher silver trophy aspen's Avatar
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    Now you see why the idea of torture as a fair punishment is laughable? With a death penalty, you are killing someone for nothing but pleasure, hatred, revenge. For torture, it is the same, but worse. You obviously have a deep sadistic urge to administer the most pain and misery that you can.
    Again - you dont not administer a punishment out of revenge, pleasure, or anything else. You do it as a determent to future criminals out there. You do this you will die for it.

    For some people the death penalty scares them - it really does. Or life in prison scares them, or prison in general.

    And thats the only thing that stops them from killing people.

    So if you want to kill someone you have to rationalize that them dying is worth yourself dying.

    Get rid of it and you only have to rationalize that them dying is worth you spending life in prison.

    ALot more people can make the second judgement than the first. Its consequences. You get rid of the consequences for an action and people are more apt to do it.
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  3. #28
    ********* Callithumpian silver trophy freakysid's Avatar
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    Torture is just sooooo damned wrong aspen. That's all I can say. Thinking about it sickens me and I do think it's barbaric. Sorry, but I do find it evil. Capital punishment, I can appreciate the arguements for and against, although Thomas More and I certainly have our position on the arguement. But torture? Find me one court in a civilised land that will condone torture - even in war?

  4. #29
    Serial Publisher silver trophy aspen's Avatar
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    Well except maybe in third world countries maybe you're right - courts dont allow torture. Cruel and Unusual punishment as it is.

    But when death is not enough to deter people from committing these crimes perhaps torture may be. Like I said - whatever it takes to stop another 168 people from dying.
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  5. #30
    Serial Publisher silver trophy aspen's Avatar
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    Its just a difference of philosophy.

    People like me believe that the end justifies the means. You do not.
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  6. #31
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    Just one question for freakysid, so you are against the death penalty, or the matter that the government feels they can say when it is just to kill(BTW, I feel is a load of bull, too.), you are against as you put "barbaric torture", so what do you think we should do with Timothy McVeigh? Set him free, leave him in prison, what, I am all for forgiveness, but one must pay the price for such a heinous crime.

    So Tell us freakysid, how should we handle this man?
    Please don't PM me with questions.
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  7. #32
    SitePoint Wizard creole's Avatar
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    AS far as the death penalty goes:

    100% of the people that have been punished using this method do not commit future crimes.

    That is effective deterrent if you ask me.
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  8. #33
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    OK,

    I Agree with the death penalty - and although i live in a country that does not use the death penalty, I dont believe that makes us more civilized than america.

    However, the death penalty is an easy way out - we kill people for crimes of killing others, but if someone is terminally ill, and they do want or need a way out, we will not let them have it

    what i am saying is: is it OK to kill someone for a crime, when they are willing to die for their cause, therefore not actually doing much harm - they have got what they want out of life; - and is it ok to not let someone who is terminally ill and wants to die to die?

    I Think that our justice syste needs rethinking, and the prison system for taht matter

    anyway, thankyou for reading my opinion
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  9. #34
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    Awesome thread.

    So, as your in favour of it, what happens if say bloke found guilty, is then killed, and 15 years down the line its found that he was not guilty of the crime after all? "oh sorry, we thought he was guilty then" what do you say to his/her family eh?
    This is another thing that annoys me. Why are they still spending money on the case 15 years down the line? He's been convicted! This is quite apt at the moment. Some of you might have heard of James Henratti - he was the last person in the UK to suffer capital punishment because of the A6 murders (about 10 miles from my house!). There has been a bit of stuff in the papers at the moment because the relatives are trying to prove his innocence (at the tax payer's expense). Of course now the DNA evidence proves that he is guilty, it's been a complete waste of time.

    If you don't have faith in the justice system, then why imprison people at all? Why punish them if you could be wrong?


    However the 'boundaries' that are set by 'society' refer to a great number of different boundaries in different times, places and situations. There is no way of making a decision and knowing that all of society will always approve of it.
    Hmm, not quite sure what you are trying to say here. Although I disagree with Rousseau's theories on property (I'm much closer to Locke - probably because he's British and Rousseau was French), both are strong supporters of the Social Contract theory, which states that if you are going to live in a society to agree to forego certain rights in order to protect others. An example is giving up some property in the form of taxes to provide for a police service to protect your other rights (read Anarchy, State and Utopia by Robert Nozick for a good analysis of this argument). If you don't want to abide by the rules that society has set, why should society not do what it wants with you. Or another way, once you violate someone else's natural rights, surely you have stepped out of the boundaries of natural law, and have thus foregone all rights, including the right to life.

    Find me one court in a civilised land that will condone torture - even in war?
    Israel have admitted to doing it.
    Last edited by OllieO; Apr 20, 2001 at 12:55.
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  10. #35
    Anyone seen my cypher? OneChance's Avatar
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    Originally posted by creole
    100% of the people that have been punished using this method do not commit future crimes.
    creole, finally something I agree with. And I'm all for torture in this case. Stick me in a room with this skinny chump for five minutes and I'll walk out with a couple of his limbs and maybe even an organ or two. That's all I ask. Five minutes. Oh, the joy. I don't care if torturing him is barbaric, and I don't care what it says about me or society. People like TM should be punished to the fullest extent possible. freakysid, maybe that goes against something you believe in, but if he murdered your 3-year-old child I'm pretty sure you would change your tune.

  11. #36
    SitePoint Enthusiast norfett's Avatar
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    Originally posted by creole
    AS far as the death penalty goes:

    100% of the people that have been punished using this method do not commit future crimes.

    That is effective deterrent if you ask me.
    Effective it maybe - but what happens if the court, as they sometimes can, get the it wrong?

    AT LEAST imprisonment is reversable, death on the other hand, is Not.

    Nuff said I think.

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  12. #37
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy TheOriginalH's Avatar
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    Whether or not execution condemns you in the eyes of god depends on two things (imho); whether he exists, and (if he does) whether he agrees with you! (Or she....doh!).

    Exectution certainly makes you a hypocrite though. If the executioner is doing so because he believes the evil of killing deserves such treatment, then surely he must kill himself afterwards?

    The idea of broadcasting it is very sick - the idea of pay per view is almost monty python.

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  13. #38
    ********* Callithumpian silver trophy freakysid's Avatar
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    TheOriginalH - Yeah, it reminds me of Terry Gillam's Brazil (the European cut).

    BTW, I actually agree with the execution being televised - however, the pay per view angle is macabre and sick. I agree with it being televised on the pricipal that the system of justice must be transparent to its citizens. Firstly, if justice were to operate behind closed doors then it is not open to the scrutiny of the people. Secondly, the execution is being performed on behalf of the people and with their consent. The legal system is part of the social contract (as Ollio posted) and its institutions act on behalf of the people. So it is the people who will execute this man and society should be required to face its actions. What did Joseph Conrad write in "The Heart of Darkness" about living in whited sepulchers and the convenience of having the butcher and the policeman who shelter us from the unpleasant tasks and help us supress the darkness that is lurking within our souls?

    Freddydoesphp The notion of punishment for crimes such as this is misguided IMHO. Now, you and your fellow copatriots will know more of the facts of the particular case of Timothy McVeigh than I do. I am aware of his crime. However, from the reports in this thread, I will also conclude that he has shown no remorse or even desire for forgiveness for his act. This does not suprise me and only demonstrates the futility of attempting correctional punishment in such cases.

    There is evil lurking in all our souls and in time of war, when restraints and the civility of normal society are stripped away, the evil within us often rises to the surface as we can witness in the heinous war crimes committed throughout human history and still to this day. Some people, even within the social institutions we create to maintain our civilisation, are just plain evil; and it would appear that Timothy McVeigh is a case in point. The notion of correcting such abnormal and inherently evil behaviour is most likely misguided. So is the idea of using punishment as a deterent in such cases. It's just not going to work. Whether you lock up Mr McVeigh for the rest of his life or slowly and painfully sever his head using a smoked herring is not going to increase or decrease the likelyhood of reasonably sane people such as you or me rushing out and blowing up a building. It is also not going to, unfortunately, diminish the likelyhood of the next deranged maniac enacting their sick evil either.

    What should society do about such people? Well the only practical solution I can think of is to remove them from society. The objective and benefit of such action is to protect society from these people and prevent them from committing further crime. In the case of Mr McVeigh, I'm sure that there would be a general consensus that it is not worth the risk to society of attempting to rehabilitate him and chancing returning him to society at some future date. So I would incarcerate him for life.

    To answer those people who have complained in this thread about the cost of incarceration, I wish to offer this advice. Don't lock up drug users, especially mothers of young children, for what is such a petty crime, if we can really call it a crime against society at all. These people have health problems or life skill problems for which incarceration is entirely counter-productive. In these cases, the crime that is being punished is not the drug use, but poverty and socioeconomic circumstance. So illicit drug use is a crime - who ends up incarcerated though? Middle class, white collar, white people who use the same drugs recreationally in their neat little suburban homes? No - they are the ones who get away with a crime for which the less privilaged need to be punished. Using crime and punishment to perpetuate social advantage for certain classes of people by suppressing others is not justice in my books; and yet it happens here in my country too, especially in the red neck tropical north.

    Finally, using financial convenience as a justification for capital punishment is farsical. The same rational, when applied to defence would justify nuking China on the grounds that it is a more efficient method of financing national defense.

    One last point. I particularly chose to use the words of Sir Thomas More in an earlier post because he met his end in life when he was executed by Henry VIII for not "interpreting" the law to suit the wishes of the King. I do have an eye for the ironic.

    OK, this really is my last point, no bluffing Aspen I'm calling your bluff as you have not explained how you would have Mr McVeigh tortured.
    Last edited by freakysid; Apr 20, 2001 at 19:58.

  14. #39
    SitePoint Member SiperNet's Avatar
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    I see that the death penalty is a touchy subject with some. Myself I think that some people should be killed! But we should do it like the movie "The Running Man" or even better we could just bring back gladiators.
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    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy TheOriginalH's Avatar
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    Top thread!
    OK, re the Conran thing, is the television not merely a vehicle for hiding? Fine, make the executions public (if you must execute, I concede your point about openness), but not televised. Allow public access, just as you do with the courts (in the UK & Oz anyway).
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  16. #41
    SitePoint Evangelist mad-onion's Avatar
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    I think in cases such as McVeigh there is no question he should be tortured, publically humiliated, tortured again, beaten, disembowled, then left to starve to death in the middle of the desert. Sorry but he simply does not classify as a human being, he has never showed any remorse and there fore what right does he have to be given any respect?

    I rate the sheep that i ate for dinner tonight higher than him. If i had the oppurtunity i would not only want to be present at the execution but administer it manually. Just him and me in a room, him in shackles me with weapons of my choosing and id make the bas**rd sorry.

    Sure i agree that where there is any doubt that this person committed the crime they should not be executed, but in some cases where it is clear cut and there is no remorse then they should die (in a very unpleasant manner).

    Perhaps he should be left in a hise rise building, let that building be bombed and let one of his legs be blown off and the other trapped between two pieces of concrete as he gasps for air in the small pocket of rubble. Or maybe we should cover him in paper cuts, roll him in costic soda and dip him in lemon juice.

    I do think that the execution should be broadcast, if people dont want to watch it that is there personal choice but i think that millions worldwide would take great comfort in knowing he is now dead!

    I admit my attitude is extreme, but i do not apologise for that! Also, before people come and slam me for this take a moment to consider how you would feel if your wife/girl friend/child/best friend/parents/etc had been a victim! None of those applies to me but i have seen this from the side of the victims, the crime was what would be considered violent but on a much lower scale (dont wish to go into that in any more detail) and i can honestly say that NOTHING serves as adequate to the offender, NOTHING!.

    As a civilsed society is it not responsible to tend to the needs of the victims before the victimiser?? By giving McVeigh the right of life we might aswell deem it legal to kill as long as you have a good reason.
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  17. #42
    SitePoint Evangelist mad-onion's Avatar
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    Originally posted by creole
    AS far as the death penalty goes:

    100% of the people that have been punished using this method do not commit future crimes.

    That is effective deterrent if you ask me.
    I may well be flamed for saying this but what about jesus??
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  18. #43
    SitePoint Wizard creole's Avatar
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    not sure what you mean...

    Jesus was executed (murdered) for crimes which even the Pharisees KNEW he was innocent of. He also came back to life.

    I don't want to turn this thread into a religious discussion even though I have strong beliefs about your statement.
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  19. #44
    Dumb PHP codin' cat
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    freakysid,

    This does not suprise me and only demonstrates the futility of attempting correctional punishment in such cases.
    This is where the miscommunication lies, there is no correcting this guy, as you said he is pure evil in its bare form. I am not not talking about rehabilitation, I am talking about suffering, the suffering that this man should endure for the sake of the lives he took. I agree, that in theory by us killing him, then we should be killed also, but that would be a never-ending circle until we are all dead. And really is it the same, don't get me wrong, I am not all that hot on the death penalty as a form of punishment anyway, like Isaid in my earlier post, I think its the easiest way out, I mean I live by the motto "The only easy day was yesterday."

    It seems in America today the easy way, is to commit a henious act, you get media coverage, you get all the anti-capital punishment folk making you out to be a martyr, you make some lawyer rich. But what about the people whose lives have been destroyed by this, what about their souls, they need healing too, sometimes for them the only way to achieve that healing is to take out of existence the cause. I am not syaing Timothy McVeigh is the cause of all the worlds problems, but what he did was heinous and he should suffer accordingly.

    BTW freakysid, I am having a hard time deciphering, your exact stance on what should happen to Mr. McVeigh. Could you tell us all what you think should happen to him? I mean you yourself said as you put it

    Now, you and your fellow copatriots will know more of the facts of the particular case of Timothy McVeigh than I do.

    So why are you trying to justify to us how we should feel about this subject, your words might be taken more seriously if you would read up on the facts before posting, and get a better understanding of why people feels as they do.
    Please don't PM me with questions.
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  20. #45
    SitePoint Evangelist mad-onion's Avatar
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    Originally posted by creole
    not sure what you mean...

    Jesus was executed (murdered) for crimes which even the Pharisees KNEW he was innocent of. He also came back to life.

    I don't want to turn this thread into a religious discussion even though I have strong beliefs about your statement.
    Dont worry, if i reply to that this will as you say turn into a religious flamewar. If you want to continue that discussion open another thread
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  21. #46
    ********* Callithumpian silver trophy freakysid's Avatar
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    Originally posted by freddydoesphp
    BTW freakysid, I am having a hard time deciphering, your exact stance on what should happen to Mr. McVeigh. Could you tell us all what you think should happen to him?
    Well I said that in my view he should be removed from society and incarcerated for life. I wouldn't bother spending too much money on him outside of providing him with warmth, shelter, food and access to a library. From my perspective, the objective of incarcerating such criminals is to protect society from them.


    So why are you trying to justify to us how we should feel about this subject, your words might be taken more seriously if you would read up on the facts before posting, and get a better understanding of why people feels as they do.
    I am aware of this person's crime. It was widely reported in the local media, as was his trial. Naturally, this event was news here as it was a tragedy for which any person would feel empathy and sorrow for the victims, their families and the trauma it caused within the Oklahoma (sp?) community and society as a whole. Quite frankly, I don't need to know all the minute details about the case to understand how the victims families and the community must be traumatised by this. I can take that as given based on the fact of what happened. What I was saying is that I will accept the reports made in this thread that Mr McVeigh has shown no remorse nor seeked forgiveness for his crime as I have not read reportage at this level of detail since the trial. I was taking this at face value as it reinforced my opinion that a criminal of his magnitude is simply inherently evil.

    Now, the fact is I personally don't think that taking violent vengence against a criminal is a constructive way of consoling and healing the victims or society at large. It perpetuates violence. Violence as a punishment for violence ... but we've been over this ground already. It would also be wrong to conclude that because I have more "liberal" views and don't support death or torture as forms of justice that I some how have a lesser empathy with the victims who have suffered as a result of this crime or any crime so tragic.
    Last edited by freakysid; Apr 21, 2001 at 21:51.

  22. #47
    One website at a time mmj's Avatar
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    Frustrating isn't it!

    We feel so much emotion, most of which is directed at Timothy McVeigh.

    However some of us wish to express this particular emotion through violence. This violence is in addition to the violence which Mr McVeigh has committed.

    Much like a chain reaction.

    We can hate him all we want. We feel empathy for the victims.

    Lets not create more victims. McVeigh can be taken out of circulation, and we can hate him. If we did anything more, such as taking violence against him, then it is unnecessary for the purpose of justice. It is just further violence.

    We must find a way of dealing with emotions, that doesn't involve committing further atrocities.

    PS. sorry that much of this post paraphrases what I've already said, but I wanted to point to our emotions about Timothy McVeigh.
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  23. #48
    SitePoint Evangelist mad-onion's Avatar
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    For right or for wrong we live in a civilised society, we have laws, the majority of the population would consider the mass murder/bombing of innocent people a crime. Majority therefore rules, and that person should be punished. That is a principle of society, not only human but all animals.
    Timothy McVeigh has taken actions that the society does not accept and therefore the society will wish to punish him! Whether that is our "god given" right or not is not an issue.

    McVeigh has proven through his initial actions and further statements that he is a ruthless human being that will stop short of nothing to get his point accross.
    Taking him out of existence ("the circulation") is societies way of ridding themselves of a problem. In cases such as McVeigh, the convicted should be led out to the back of the courtroom and shot there and then. One .44 bullet to the head, that would cost the country about 50cents!! There is no debate as to whether he did the crime and therefore he should be exterminated in the cheapest possible way.

    On your issue of not creating victims, everyday that he lives we are creating victims. Ridding the planet of his vile existence would be closure, we could forget about it and move on

    ** Side Note: You think prisons are cosy in America, come down to NZ. Alot of people who get realeased reoffend to get back in. We also do not have the death penalty, atleast not officially. There are a few prisoners that have recieved quite a bit of publicity latelly....every self respecting male in this country will take part in the methodical beating and execution of them if the state ever releases them
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  24. #49
    SitePoint Wizard edshuck's Avatar
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    I need to clarify my position on the Mc Veigh execution. My reason for watching it is that I am opposed to state sanctioned homocide and I seek some understanding of why this is done by the state. I think it is revenge. But I would like to think there is a higher reason.

    Mc Veigh's death will not correct the wrongs that he has done, nor did his action correct the wrongs that he may have though he could correct.

    I was stunned by the reference to the children as "colateral damage". Being a granpa and feeling as I do about all children, I find this attitude reprehensible.

  25. #50
    Anyone seen my cypher? OneChance's Avatar
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    TM's death won't bring back those he killed. But letting him live won't bring them back either. I'd rather see him dead than alive.


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