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View Poll Results: Should people be executed?

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Thread: Death Penalty

  1. #51
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    Well what do you know: I write a few paragraphs and my computer freezes up...ugh.

    Elledan: you are quite mistaken. I understood that phrase of yours. Your point is that children are effected by everything out there. This does not change my point.

    Example: A child goes off to college and is confronted with the tempation of sex, alcohol, or drugs -- perhaps all three. If they are raised with self-discipline and logic, and are prepared for such trials, they have a much better shot of making it through such situations without giving in.

    H: is it really ridiculous to say the parents of teenager on a murderous rampage messed up? Of course there are exceptions, but they are just that: exceptions, and not the rule.

    Everyone who believes that you can just raise your children 'properly' so that they'll always stay on the 'right' path is not only ignorant but also a complete fool.

    There is no reason why someone goes on a shooting spree. It's always a combination of thousand smaller and bigger reasons, which slowly builds up pressure.
    1 - No one said they would not mess up -- kids WILL mess up, but if they murder many people before they are even 18 years of age, some serious problems exist.

    2 - Yes, there is a reason why someone goes on a shooting spree: there are many things that contribute, but OBVIOUSLY there are certain things that stand out more than others, that, when removed, could very well prevent the disaster.

    I'm quite certain that nearly every child who goes on a killing spree never meant to kill anyone. They merely had to release frustration they couldn't release in another way.
    If you point a gun at someone and pull the trigger, you intend to kill them. Realize frustration? However you want to say it Elledan is fine by me, but as far as I'm concerned they all meant to kill someone -- because they DID.

    There's one thing you all seem to be missing: you, I, and probably everyone in this thread, has/is growing up around a lot of the same problems these murders have. We face a lot of the same problems, and have a fair amount of the same flaws I'm sure, but we don't respond by shooting people -- so what else is different? In my opinion, it's partially parenting, and partially your genes...

    ...who you are is a combination of your genetic makeup, and your upbringing. A talkative person can be made rather quiet if brought up in such a way, I believe -- but being built into them, it cannot be fully repressed.

    Some of us have even more things to deal with than, say, those responsible for the recent school shootings, but if you are taught to deal with things logically and shown that rage and pure emotion are not the answer to frustration, you're obviously more likely to make the right decision and NOT plan the deaths of others.

    I thought this was common sense? Teach your children how to deal with problems, teach them how horrible violence like that is, and things will improve. Is it possible for a parent to teach those things and still have their child murder people? Yes, it is, but in my opinion, it's rare, and it still implies some failure on the parent's part -- all parents have failue in their child's upbringing hanging over them, but some are worse than others, and, unfortunatly, lead to shooting sprees.

  2. #52
    Fluffy Kitten Programmer~ Elledan's Avatar
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    TWT, the best upbringing is not by the 'laws' in the bible or Koran or any other 'holy' book, but by the 'laws' teached by Buddhism.

    http://www.accesstoinsight.org

    take a look at that site and come back after you've read at least a few parts.
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  3. #53
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    So now you can define the best upbringing, eh?

    Buddhism may promote a moral, solid lifestyle, but it is incorrect, and thus, flawed, in my rarely-humble opinion.

    I read some of the things there -- I'm neither disgusted (your word when talking about my own religion), nor all that impressed.

    Let me ask you though: you know more about Buddhism than I. How does it react to people such as yourself being "sickened" by other religions, and referring to people as complete and total fools, or without a shred of logic?

  4. #54
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy TheOriginalH's Avatar
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    Is it possible for a parent to teach those things and still have their child murder people? Yes, it is, but in my opinion, it's rare,
    In your opinion it's rare? How many case studies have you actually looked at here twt? Either a sample which is vastly skewed from the normal distribution, or you are simply talking out of your hat. As I said, educational psychology is a complex area, and one I studied at degree level. Whilst I am not a lecturer, I would be quite happy to explain off the forum (to avoid boring everyone to death) why your "opinion" is almost offensive.

    Re the religion thing, I'm staying out of it. I have a dislike for all "organised" religion, for personal & other reasons, but think that it is quite wrong to berate the beliefs of any individual where those beliefs harm no-one, and often, no matter how mislead, benefit both individuals and society.

    (hmmm...not such a good job of staying out of it then - ya think we need to rename this forum?)

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  5. #55
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    Yes, please email me (chris@edevcafe.com) any thoughts you have on things. If I'm wrong (hey, I might be), then I most definintely want to know about it.

    And good call on the religion -- the only religion I find sickening is perhaps the worship of Satan, and maybe some other similar ways of life.

  6. #56
    Next stop: PHP! Marina's Avatar
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    This is becoming interesting; I just have to post a reply.

    TWT and Elledan: I think that both you and your religions have more in common than you think. Both Buddhism and Christianity have one main point: live in peace and harmony. The Bible tells about “turning the other cheek”. What do you think that means? I think that it tells something about forgiving people even if they have done bad things to you. And TWT, as a good Christian you should know what Jesus said when he was crucified. Did he pray to God for all his enemies to be given a death penalty? No, he prayed to God to “forgive them, because they don’t know what they are doing”.

    I am an atheist myself but I strongly believe in something called “law of the universe”. This philosophy states that there’s positive and negative energy within us. Our purpose in life is to fulfil ourselves so we can radiate as much positive energy as possible. This is important because this energy affects everything else in the universe. Everything bad and difficult that happens to us is supposed to make us stronger and wiser. That’s why it’s no use sheltering your kids from life, they can’t learn to make their own decisions without all the temptations around them (and therefore it is impossible to shelter them forever).
    This philosophy has a lot in common with both Buddhism and Christianity. An example: this is not our only life, after death our soul will be reborn (the Bible calls this resurrection). In the next life our sole has subconscious memories of all earlier lives and the development can continue. So people that commit horrible crimes in this life are supposed to learn from their mistakes (as morbid as this may sound). If they are killed they have to continue in their next life, if they survive they have time to develop in this life. Their victims have to get through the sorrow and become stronger. Instead of death penalty I would suggest that the offender and the victim should meet.

    I agree with TWT that it’s the parents’ responsibility to teach their children about life. The best way to teach however is by being a good role model. The usual nagging is mostly hypocritical and not at all effective. Elledan is right by pointing out that children have lots of other role models than their parents. That’s why it is so important to teach them that there are many different kinds of people in this world. There is many different ways of finding the “harmony” that every religion talks about. If everybody respects one another this doesn’t have to be a problem.
    Oh, and by the way neither sex nor drugs are real “sins”. A sin is something you intentionally do to hurt someone else, so unless you rape your partner there’s nothing wrong with sex! (I recommend safe sex!)
    Last edited by Marina; May 11, 2001 at 15:46.

  7. #57
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    A very eloquent post -- one I find difficult in disagreeing with. I will have to disagree with the last part, however. I think sex outside of marriage is sinful. Certanily I believe there are bigger problems to deal with than two people having sex, and then marrying shortly afterwards, but I believe it to be sinful nonetheless, and therefore will attempt to resist it myself, and teach any children I might have to do the same.

    I also do *not* agree with sheltering a child -- we're on the same page there. By sheltering them, you should simply be keeping them away from temptation when you can, while all the time preparing them for the day when they will have to face it head-on.

    As for Elledan and I: I really cannot say. I can certainly appreciate the fact that a person who correctly follows a Buddhist lifestyle will be a blessing on the world -- what I wish for Elledan and others here to realize is that a person who correctly follows a Christian lifestyle will also be a blessing/asset to this world.

    I think we are more different than you realize, however. I realized this as Elledan and I discussed the progression of technology, and during some past religious debates. Perhaps I am wrong, but in the case of religion, I usually make a point to give credence to all sects (well, nearly all sects), and try to find the value in each.

    I do not believe Elledan sees even the slightest value in Christianity -- which surprises me, because for every over-zealous believer who feels he has to threaten damnation constantly to be heard, there are many others who are simply setting up soup kitchens, or running drug rehab-centers, in the name of the Jesus Christ.

  8. #58
    Destiny Manager Plebius's Avatar
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    On the death penalty: I believe it is wrong to kill any person, regardless of any rationalization.


    On the issue of religion: All religions come from the same place ( http://www.msnbc.com/news/566079.asp ). The only thing that's different is the path they use to get there. If three people decide to go to Prague, one migh take a plane, one might take a boat, and the other might walk. If the person speaks English they call it Prague, if the person speaks German they call it Praha. I don't think any religion is 'better' than any other religion, it just depends on which path you want to take to get there.

  9. #59
    SitePoint Enthusiast Chris H's Avatar
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    Whoa! Where's the thread going!!

    But since we're here I just had to reply!

    LuZeR, with respect, your views you put forward show a complete unfamiliarity with Christianity. The Bible makes it perfectly clear that there is only one way to heaven - through faith in Jesus Christ. Nothing to do with how good you are or what your motives are.

    Even Islam talks about the way to heaven being through submission to Allah only.

    Your views reflect a new age type philosophy which is alien to Christianity and even the other 2 monotheistic religions.

    And Marina, in a Christian sense a sin is simply something we do that's not in the Father's will. Being nice or nasty doesn't come into it.

    Couldn't let that pass. I feel better now.
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  10. #60
    One website at a time mmj's Avatar
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    Yikes. I had a reply prepared for this thread last night, but lost it before it was posted. The thread has come a long way since.

    But I'll put in my two cents anyway...

    A child is not simply raised by parents, but by a number of factors including

    - parents and family
    - community (neighbour, family friends, neighborhood)
    - peers
    - commercial media
    - governments
    - society as a whole

    Not necessarily in that order of importance. For instance, a child with little or no interaction with their peers will get more information from the commercial media, and so and and so on.

    It looks like Elledan already beat me to this! oops.

    Oh well. I won't comment on religion, because a person's beliefs are a very personal thing, and I want to respect that.

    It is our responsibility as a society to raise a child, and keep raising the child until adulthood, and beyond. Everyone influences everyone else's behaviour. If we are not the legal parent or guardian of somebody, and they commit a violent crime, are we to turn our back on them and blame solely their parents because they are not OUR children? They are products of our society.
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  11. #61
    Destiny Manager Plebius's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Chris H
    LuZeR, with respect, your views you put forward show a complete unfamiliarity with Christianity. The Bible makes it perfectly clear that there is only one way to heaven - through faith in Jesus Christ. Nothing to do with how good you are or what your motives are.

    Even Islam talks about the way to heaven being through submission to Allah only.

    Your views reflect a new age type philosophy which is alien to Christianity and even the other 2 monotheistic religions.
    Along the road to Prague, the man walking stops to ask for directions. One person he asks says "The only way to get to Prague is to go over the hills" another person he asks says "The only way to get to Prague is to cross the river".

    I'm not looking at religion from the viewpoint of the religioius groups, or I obviously wouldn't have said what I did. Besides, if you had looked at the article I put a link to, you would have noticed that the meditating Buddhist and the praying nun had the same brain wave patterns. Your comments show a complete unfamiliarity with studies made on religious experiences. When a Hindu reports such an experience, he speaks of a oneness. When a Buddhist reports such an experience, he speaks of an emptiness. When a Christain reports such an experience, he speaks of a communion with God, and Jesus. The brain patterns are all the same.

    Religion is a process, the specific religion is the content.

  12. #62
    SitePoint Member DLong's Avatar
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    Death or Life?

    Depending on the crime and the severity of it if someone suffers a horrable death I think the person who killed should pay the same way (this just might be because my aunt was killed by my uncle and he walked away scott free and only spent 2 to 3 years in jail) but that is my view on the subject. This is just the way I think it should be with certin cases, if I offend you I am sorry.
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  13. #63
    SitePoint Member tscratch's Avatar
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    Agree with the death penalty? Yes, absolutely. My view has nothing to do with rehabilitation, or detering crime. Some times people prove that they do not belong on this planet!

    You want to blow up building where innocent children are gathered? F You! I would gladly kill that s.o.b. myself!

    I also think the death penealty should be expanded to include anyone that has been convited of rape MORE THAN ONCE. Yeah, there are innocent people in jail. 2 or 3 times for the same thing? I don't think so! Get off my planet!
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  14. #64
    SitePoint Enthusiast Chris H's Avatar
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    Hey LuZeR, I did read the article. But it's an academic article that bears little basis to real life. It's irrelevant what my brain waves are. They have no bearing on the truth. The article leans towards the theory that all 'religious' experiences have their root in a single trigger or source. To me it sounds remarkably like oneness theology. If someone said to me that my experience of Jesus was the same as Mr XYZ's experience of transcendental meditation I would probably be offended.

    Anyway to keep on the thread I think we should have the death penalty.
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  15. #65
    ********* Callithumpian silver trophy freakysid's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Chris H
    Anyway to keep on the thread I think we should have the death penalty.
    Hehehe, there is a lovely ambiguity in that. Are you suggesting that the death penalty should be used to keep people from straying off topic in threads?

  16. #66
    SitePoint Enthusiast Chris H's Avatar
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    Yo! Well spotted freakysid.

    Just imagine......
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  17. #67
    Fluffy Kitten Programmer~ Elledan's Avatar
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    How well the death penalty works in reality, with as example the USA:

    Since the introduction of the death penalty in 1976, 711 people have been executed:

    -lethal injection (546 times, 36 states)
    -electric chair (149 times, 10 states)
    -gaschamber (11 times, 5 states)
    -gallow (3 times, 2 states)
    -firing-squad (2 times, 2 states)

    84 men and 2 women have been released from Death Row because later evidence showed that they were completely innocent. The Death Penalty Information Center tells us that between 1973 and 1993 2.75 innocent people were released from Death Row yearly. This number has now increased to 5 people a year.

    An important argument for the death penalty has always been that it is a deterrence for criminals. This argument has been disproved by some research last year by the New York Times. This investigation showed that states without death penalty had lower crime-rates than states with death penalty. Over the years, those crime-rates have always changed, but never there was any relation with the death penalty. As a deterrence-methode, the death penalty has thus absolutely no effect.

    Now is the question: is it worth to execute reguarly innocent people if the death penalty gives only such meagre results?

    I hope that everyone will answer 'No' at this question.
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  18. #68
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    I'd need more evidence than simply your word that it does not deter crime -- especially in Texas.

    I'll say this: if what you say is true (I have my doubts), then I'd likely support the death penalty in some cases (McVeigh, henious crimes, serial murders, etc), and simply banishment and hard labor for life for the others -- make them work for the rest of their lives to pay for what they've done.

  19. #69
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy TheOriginalH's Avatar
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    Resounding "no" from me Elledan

    H
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  20. #70
    One website at a time mmj's Avatar
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    Again: some people view punishments as revenge, and some see punishments for the purpose of the protection of society. Those people that support the death penalty fall into the revenge category. You have stated that they should "pay for what they've done" (TWTCommish), "Why not let the victims family exact some vengeance" (Polymath), "Tim McVeigh ... deserves more than what he will receive" (uwajes), "I have no hurt feelings whatsoever over Timothy McVeigh" (emcgill). These logic in these statements are based on the emotions (hatred) felt against the criminal, rather than the need to protect society from the criminal. Therefore these people are in favour of killing someone based on revenge. A lot of people are very comfortable with that concept, and I respect that. However, I wouldn't personally support the killing of a person based on what I felt about that person, because I know killing is wrong no matter what I feel about the person.
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  21. #71
    Next stop: PHP! Marina's Avatar
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    Excellent comment mmj! I couldn't have said that better myself (because English isn't my native language... )

  22. #72
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    My comment, "pay for what they have done", is not necessarily based on emotion at all -- it purely depends on the context, tone of voice, and the person interpreting it really.

    For all you know it could just be me expressing that they need to be punished. As for emotion: it WILL take part in your decision as well, make no mistake about that. It cannot be removed from the equation.

  23. #73
    SitePoint Enthusiast emcgill's Avatar
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    As for my comment, it is based on revenge.

    Why shouldn't we take revenge on him? He killed many men, women, and children, for no purpose. The only remorse he has is he wished he would have blew the whole building instead of part of it.

    He has shown no remorse for he has done. I don't understand why he should even deserve to live.

  24. #74
    ********* Callithumpian silver trophy freakysid's Avatar
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    The lack of remorse appears to be a theme amongst many of the people who advocate the manslaughter of Mr McVeigh (in this thread and an earlier one we had discussing the issue). Would McVeigh escape the death penalty according to your justice if he were to appologise for his sins?

  25. #75
    One website at a time mmj's Avatar
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    To TWT: You're right - emotion will always play a part if we decide to punish somebody. I we don't decide to punish somebody however, then this emotion doesn't play a factor.

    To emc: yep, I gathered this from your previous post, and I think you agree with me that you want to take revenge upon him because you hate him.

    To those that are in support of the death penalty:
    _____________

    I am not trying to push my beliefs upon you, I'd just like to help you understand how I feel.

    A lot of the time, if somebody does not support the death penalty, he or she is accused of not caring for the victim's family, or of tolerating the crime. This is very much not the case.

    I'd like to take the case of Timothy McVeigh as an example. As somebody who is against capital punishment, I feel for each of the victims of this crime. I feel for the victims' families and friends, and I am outraged at this crime. I hate McVeigh's attitude, and I don't particularly like looking at him at all. Every time his face appears in the paper I think of what he did, and how he was allowed to do it.

    Up to here, this is an appropriate way of thinking of it, I hope you agree. But after this is where our opinions become different.

    For me, I would like to take McVeigh aside and put him into care where he can be rehabilitated and cared for. If he cannot be reformed in some ways, it is best that he remains in prison, to protect us from his condition.

    You on the other hand would like to use this hatred by retaliation, and you would like to murder him because of the way you feel.

    This is a simple difference of opinion, and you are fully entitled to this opinion. Opinions are a personal thing.

    If you have any more questions about my personal feelings on this matter feel free to ask.
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