Yes, that's what we're getting into. And although I'm open to anyone disagreeing, I do hope that we can all agree on this-- the court systems are far from perfect. (Not to say that they don't have some positive attributes as well and aren't better than anarchy, or anything like that.)Originally Posted by Bernie
That's a valid point (well, what you mean, not your words here). I'll give you that, and I'll agree-- the death penalty is being used badly. Until such time as it is worked out better, it probably should be stopped (or at least limited to the very worst cases).Originally Posted by John
Again, entirely valid and it speaks to the implementation, not the idea. But--I think they're not equal. One could say I'm cynical about the ability of the justice system to mete out the death penalty fairly. Or that I'm realistic about it. Either way the facts remain the same. Poor people are put to death, rich people are not. More blacks than whites are put to death. Are these groups somehow more deserving of the death penalty?
That doesn't follow logically for me. The idea of communism seems like a good one to me, and the implementation is almost always (maybe always) awful. But that doesn't mean it's a bad idea. Or does it? Are you suggesting it does, that it's too hard to implement or something?...But that's only part of my reasoning on why the death penalty is a bad idea.
That's not a strong argument for what you're concluding. There are (at least) two reasons:Originally Posted by Bernie
1) Yes, it's powerful. But that doesn't mean that this method is effective in conveying it. They may think "that doesn't apply to me" or the threat may be too distant. They may also find the threat of life in jail to be just as bad, so it doesn't change anything for them to have that added threat.
2) The people that kill in the worst ways may really not be afraid of death, for various reasons-- insanity, something more troubling to them than death, a desire for thrill-seeking and trying to evade consequences (just like extreme sports enthusiasts, just in a more problematic way).
I agree. But that is a problem with the implementation of "life in jail" not with the idea of "life in jail". I believe that (at least in some cases!) the meaning of "life in jail" should be quite literal. 22 years isn't that; I don't care what they call it-- that's not life. That's not what it means. Norway may have very loose laws on that and have moved from not even having the death penalty to not even having life in jail-- I don't know. But none of that means that life in jail can't work-- it means it isn't being implemented properly in that case.2) another point is that 22 years is not necessaries long enough for someone to die, therefore life sentence != death and as such is not on the same level when it comes to punishment.