Death Penalty Reform

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Death Penalty Reform

Post by ihave19voices on Wed Oct 19, 2011 1:47 pm

I am pro death penalty. However, its clear to me that it is flawed and is need of serious reform.

I suggest we make the death penalty tougher to impose by having it on the table only where there is absolute certainty that the accused has perpetrated the crime they are being tried for. Something I call "absolute guilt". Meaning there has to be substantiated evidence that clearly points to a perpetrator being guilty, i.e. have to be caught in the act or on video so there is no doubt whatsoever that someone has committed the act. I dont know enough about DNA to make a call on how that would fall into the equation. Unless theres this sort of definitive evidence, the death penalty is off the table. Id also restrict the penalty to murders for financial gain, thrill killing, hate crime murders, and the heinous of the heinous.

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Justice for all

Post by Jenye on Thu Oct 20, 2011 9:58 pm

Under current law, if there is evidence which shows a person might be innocent, they are not allowed to use that evidence in any appeal. Under current law, if a prosecutor refuses (for whatever reason...and its often political) to allow a case to be brought for a re-trial, then it doesn't matter if the individual is innocent or not...they will be executed anyway - despite any and all evidence of innocence which exists.

Under current law, if a Governor refuses clemency because of the evidence of innocence which the courts refuse to hear...the person is executed...regardless of the fact that they may be innocent.

Witnesses who recant their testimony, evidence that the individual did not commit the crime, people who have been characterized as being "masterminds" when their IQ is only 75... These are but a few of the problems with the system of killing people under color of law.

There are only two possible solutions to these problems... either allow evidence of innocence to be the basis for an appeal...or save money by sentencing these individuals to spending the rest of their lives surrounded by murderers and thieves.

Mind you, I happen to believe that evidence of innocence should be allowed as the basis of an appeal...as it is the only way of being absolutely sure. More than that, it puts an end to people being executed because of the political aspirations of prosecutors, judges, governor's and others. It holds to account police who badger people into "confessions" which are then allowed as evidence. It prevents Governor's from interfering with investigations surrounding deaths caused by "arson" when all of the best experts have already concluded no arson took place. It ends the ability of prosecutors to claim that an IQ of 75 means that a person can be a "Mastermind" simply because they have managed to learn to tie their own shoes.

Of course, the real problem is... evidence of innocence being permitted as the basis of an appeal means that appeals might become never ending...and limiting the number of appeals based on innocence would mean that we do not care if a person is guilty or not.

The only logical recourse is to sentence a person to spend the rest of their natural lives in prison. With no chance of parole.

Yes, I know prisons are overcrowded... over 3 million people in prison. But we can slash the prison population by over 80% via the simple means of providing treatment and training for those convicted of non violent drug offenses. Treat them for their abuse of drugs...and train them in a skill which will help them find work.

If we do that, the best estimate (made by the Federal Beurau of Prisons in a report to President Richard Nixon) is that crime will be slashed by 80%.

And what sort of work would these people do in an economy with so many already out of work?

Quite simply...its not work that is lacking. The USA has a crying need to build a national smart infrastructure...which would by itself provide enough work for everyone for the next 50 years (at least). That alone is just one aspect of what is needed.

Yes, Justice is an issue which ties directly into the discussion of jobs... because without justice, we have created a job force of 3 million people...who are all behind bars. They work making shoes and clothes for Buster Brown, underwear for Victoria's Secret... and a host of other products...all for pennies per hour. Work that carries with it the "made in use" stamp.

You want to know why the war on drugs never ends? Its because Corporations have a vested interest in making sure that it doesn't.


And now you know. Many people who are found guilty of crimes are found guilty because corporate america is grooming some sherriff, some cop, some prosecutor, judge, politician...for higher office. And it is because of this that there really is...no justice for all.

Jennifer Warren

ihave19voices wrote:I am pro death penalty. However, its clear to me that it is flawed and is need of serious reform.

I suggest we make the death penalty tougher to impose by having it on the table only where there is absolute certainty that the accused has perpetrated the crime they are being tried for. Something I call "absolute guilt". Meaning there has to be substantiated evidence that clearly points to a perpetrator being guilty, i.e. have to be caught in the act or on video so there is no doubt whatsoever that someone has committed the act. I dont know enough about DNA to make a call on how that would fall into the equation. Unless theres this sort of definitive evidence, the death penalty is off the table. Id also restrict the penalty to murders for financial gain, thrill killing, hate crime murders, and the heinous of the heinous.

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Re: Death Penalty Reform

Post by BangTango on Fri Oct 28, 2011 3:38 am

Pro death penalty? I think it's a very bad thing for the state to kill people. The majority of the world agrees with me. End the death penalty.

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death

Post by Jenye on Fri Oct 28, 2011 5:12 am

I fully agree. However, many do not. Accordingly, I believe that the best way to approach this problem is to show people that the death penalty can NOT be administered fairly. Only then will they move to a system that jails people without condemning them to death.



BangTango wrote:Pro death penalty? I think it's a very bad thing for the state to kill people. The majority of the world agrees with me. End the death penalty.

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Re: Death Penalty Reform

Post by oldschoolwax on Sat Oct 29, 2011 12:07 am

OK, I understand what you're saying Jenye, but unfortunately I think that most of the people that do realize that the death penalty cannot be administered fairly already are amongst a group that is only slightly larger that will ever get it. (at this time) Not for lack of mental capability, but because many will tune out to the argument before examining the facts. Science has already shown cases of people proven innocent after execution, as well as many that were held for years on death row awaiting execution only to be exonerated. The staunch advocates don't want to hear the argument. Those that want the death penalty are of the "eye for an eye" mentality. I think if we want to fight it (and we should) we need to use the evidence that is out there to support the abolition of state execution.

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Re: Death Penalty Reform

Post by ihave19voices on Sat Oct 29, 2011 12:36 am

Yes, I'm for it. I look at it like this, if it was my family member that was killed and the murderer was 100% guilty/caught, Id want that person to be executed. Eye for an eye without question. Why keep someone alive who has done something so heinous that has no chance of getting out of prison? Feeding, clothing, and housing someone that truly can be reformed?

I look at it like that, however, I think that the bar to institute the death penalty should be a helluva lot higher. I just dont see anything wrong with putting to death a prisoner who is unquestionably guilty and has done something so heinous ie multiple murders, murders for profit, terrorism, etc. It should be a rare penalty thats saved for the absolute worst and with absolute unquestionable guilt backing it.

Unless the Supreme Court overturns the death penalty, theres not much that can be done except tweak what we have.

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