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Death Penalty

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I believe the death penalty should be

  1. 1. I believe the death penalty should be

    • Stopped in all cases
      10
    • Used for only deaths of first responders such as police, fire, EMS,etc.
      0
    • Used only with death of police
      0
    • Used only after all legal appeals have been used
      1
    • Used with limited or no appeals.
      2

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http://www.huffingtonpost.com/shane-claiborne/tennessee-death-row-invit_b_5225774.html?ncid=fcbklnkushpmg00000051

I just happened to read this article and hope that we can have a discussion about the death penalty here in the ethics/Philosophy/Religion area.

The article hit me. I am very much against the death penalty. Having worked for a criminal defense attorney who had many death penalty cases, before I came into the picture, I know they bothered him, especially the last one he did. He represented the other party in the conspiracy. This man had turned himself in. He blamed the other for the actual crime. His testimony got him a short sentence and the other man the death penalty. I think the lawyer always had a sneaking suspicion that the one he represented, to the best of his ability, may have been the actual killer and had come forward first so he could save his life.

Up to the time of his death the one who was sentenced to death said he did not do it. Who knows. Without going into the case at all, let's just say the evidence was shown to have both equally guilty up to the point of killing. After that it was one's word against the other.

I have many other reasons to be against it. I know how much this case bothered that lawyer. He did his job well and his client lived to have his freedom within a few years.

Are there others here who have personal experience with issues of capital punishment?

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I don't think that the government should be engaged in killing citizens, as a general practice.

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I'm against it, as I believe murder is murder, whether committed by an individual or by a government.

And too many people on death row have later been exonerated. One is too many.

My stepfather was foreman on a jury in that sentenced a man to death in 1950. He remains certain the man was guilty but it bothers him to this day that he was responsible for sentencing the man to death. This after he returned from 3.5 years of infantry island-hopping in WWII (South Pacific), got off the boat in San Fran, and swore he'd never kill another living thing as long as he lived. He told me that story about five years ago. At the time he told me I had been struggling with my own feelings on the matter for a while; am not sure how we got on the subject but this story still haunts me.

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That must have been so hard for your dad, Elvish.

In spite of all I saw and dealt with while at the law office I have never struggled with my views about capital punishment. When I started dating a lawyer who defended child molesters I had to struggle then with his defense of them. I came to the realization that every person deserved the best defense, no matter what. That helped me to walk with him through his pain of accepting this client who may have caused another death by lying, as well as the original murder. While he knew that and practiced it, he still had those lingering feelings of being part of a wrongful death. I have talked to other lawyers who are not bothered by this. Obviously the one I dated was a different type than lower than whale poo.

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Ohio increases death penalty drug dosages after execution review | Reuters

The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction (DRC) said on Monday its use of a two-drug combination of the sedative midazolam and the pain killer hydromorphone to execute McGuire had been within constitutional bounds and that his movements had been consistent with the drug effects and other factors.

The DRC said it would increase the midazolam from 10 mg to 50 mg and the hydromorphone from 40 to 50 mg, saying there was "no reason not to increase the dosage levels to reaffirm that the drugs will, without doubt, cause profound general anesthetic and ventilatory depressant effects".

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A new study estimates error rate of death penalty sentences in U.S.

The study’s authors conclude that based on the statistical data, it can safely be estimated that 4.1 percent, or one-in-25 criminal defendants, sentenced to death in the U.S. are innocent. In fact, that’s probably low-balling the actual number of erroneous death penalty sentences.

What does that mean exactly? Here’s the takeaway from the study: "most innocent defendants who have been sentenced to death have not been exonerated, and many — including the great majority of those who have been resentenced to life in prison — probably never will be."

I have not been looking for these articles. They seem to be attracted to me. Another reason to remove the death penalty and focus more on making sure the person is really guilty rather than throw in jail and find out later, only because it is a death penalty case.

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Ohio increases death penalty drug dosages after execution review | Reuters

The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction (DRC) said on Monday its use of a two-drug combination of the sedative midazolam and the pain killer hydromorphone to execute McGuire had been within constitutional bounds and that his movements had been consistent with the drug effects and other factors.

The DRC said it would increase the midazolam from 10 mg to 50 mg and the hydromorphone from 40 to 50 mg, saying there was "no reason not to increase the dosage levels to reaffirm that the drugs will, without doubt, cause profound general anesthetic and ventilatory depressant effects".

Unbelievable.

Why not shoot them, or decapitate them?

On the other hand, if some guy rapes and murders my pregnant daughter I will kill him with my own hands given the opportunity.

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Inmate dies following botched Oklahoma execution, second execution delayed

Clayton Lockett’s execution Tuesday night was halted after about 20 minutes due to an issue with a vein, the Associated Press reported. Not long after Lockett was deemed unconscious from the first of three drugs, he began “writhing on the gurney,” according to the Associated Press. He was declared dead 43 minutes after the execution began.

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'Something's wrong' in Oklahoma | MSNBC

Indeed, it was. Lockett did, in fact, eventually die last night, but of a heart attack. Oklahoma had intended to also execute Charles Warner last night, but given the gut-wrenching circumstances, the state agreed to a 14-day stay. Lockett’s attorney told reporters the execution was “botched” and was “difficult to watch.”

Warner’s attorney equated it with watching someone get tortured.

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The death penalty is final. It takes away any chance for righting any errors in the trial. What do you say to the family of someone who was executed in error? "Whoopsie, my bad!"

 

The book "Actual Innocence," written by the lawyers who founded the Innocence Project solidified by belief that the death penalty is wrong. It gives case histories of people they defended who wound up on death row due to false testimony, wrongdoing on the part of the police/prosecution, racial bias, and sometimes just being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

 

IIRC, the United States is the only industrialized nation that still has capital punishment.

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It's easy for those of us not touched by brutal crime, to make judgements about the death penalty. It makes me uneasy, and I don't know if I could sentence another human being to death.

But I'm sure policemen, and prosecutors have a different way of viewing it.

I believe there are crimes so awful, that having committed them means you should die too. You just have to be sure you have the right person, and that's not as easy as it sounds.

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So how should we kill people?

Should doctors or nurses have to administer the medications if that is the method the state chooses?

Who gets to decide if the death is cruel or painful or causes suffering?

Who gets in trouble if an innocent person is executed?

I would certainly feel murderous intent in my heart should someone harm my family. I just am not certain that the state should carry out my revenge.

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