If Jesus had been killed twenty years ago, Catholic school children would be wearing little electric chairs around their necks instead of crosses.
Mom hadn't met Ramon; her advocacy was more arm's length - petitions, the website, letter writing, meetings with politicians. Her friend Hanna had formed a close friendship with Ramon though, visiting him as often as she could. Hanna told me that Ramon's greatest regret was that he wouldn't get to see his daughter grow up.And Jeremy's dad, who had that opportunity, was just throwing it away.It made me furious, and I couldn't let it go.
If the Pentateuch be true, religious persecution is a duty. The dungeons of the Inquisition were temples, and the clank of every chain upon the limbs of heresy was music in the ear of God. If the Pentateuch was inspired, every heretic should be destroyed; and every man who advocates a fact inconsistent with the sacred book, should be consumed by sword and flame.In the Old Testament no one is told to reason with a heretic, and not one word is said about relying upon argument, upon education, nor upon intellectual development—nothing except simple brute force. Is there to-day a christian who will say that four thousand years ago, it was the duty of a husband to kill his wife if she differed with him upon the subject of religion? Is there one who will now say that, under such circumstances, the wife ought to have been killed? Why should God be so jealous of the wooden idols of the heathen? Could he not compete with Baal? Was he envious of the success of the Egyptian magicians? Was it not possible for him to make such a convincing display of his power as to silence forever the voice of unbelief? Did this God have to resort to force to make converts? Was he so ignorant of the structure of the human mind as to believe all honest doubt a crime? If he wished to do away with the idolatry of the Canaanites, why did he not appear to them? Why did he not give them the tables of the law? Why did he only make known his will to a few wandering savages in the desert of Sinai? Will some theologian have the kindness to answer these questions? Will some minister, who now believes in religious liberty, and eloquently denounces the intolerance of Catholicism, explain these things; will he tell us why he worships an intolerant God? Is a god who will burn a soul forever in another world, better than a christian who burns the body for a few hours in this? Is there no intellectual liberty in heaven? Do the angels all discuss questions on the same side? Are all the investigators in perdition? Will the penitent thief, winged and crowned, laugh at the honest folks in hell? Will the agony of the damned increase or decrease the happiness of God? Will there be, in the universe, an eternal auto da fe?
I also think of those daily slaughters along the highways, of that death that is as horrible as it is banal and that bears no resemblance to cancer or AIDS because, as the work not of nature but of man, it is an almost voluntary death. How can it be that such a death fails to dumbfound us, to turn our lives upside down, to incite us to vast reforms? No, it does not dumbfound us, because like Pasenow, we have a poor sense of the real, and in the sur-real sphere of symbols, this death in the guise of a handsome car actually represents life; this smiling death is con-fused with modernity, freedom, adventure, just as Elisabeth was con-fused with the Virgin. This death of a man condemned to capital punishment, though infinitely rarer, much more readily draws our attention, rouses passions: confounded with the image of the executioner, it has a symbolic voltage that is far stronger, far darker and more repellent. Et cetera.Man is a child wandering lost—to cite Baudelaire`s poem again—in the forests of symbols.(The criterion of maturity: the ability to resist symbols. But mankind grows younger all the time.)
Can we believe that the real God, if there is one, ever ordered a man to be killed simply for making hair oil, or ointment? We are told in the thirtieth chapter of Exodus, that the Lord commanded Moses to take myrrh, cinnamon, sweet calamus, cassia, and olive oil, and make a holy ointment for the purpose of anointing the tabernacle, tables, candlesticks and other utensils, as well as Aaron and his sons; saying, at the same time, that whosoever compounded any like it, or whoever put any of it on a stranger, should be put to death. In the same chapter, the Lord furnishes Moses with a recipe for making a perfume, saying, that whoever should make any which smelled like it, should be cut off from his people. This, to me, sounds so unreasonable that I cannot believe it. Why should an infinite God care whether mankind made ointments and perfumes like his or not? Why should the Creator of all things threaten to kill a priest who approached his altar without having washed his hands and feet? These commandments and these penalties would disgrace the vainest tyrant that ever sat, by chance, upon a throne.
They're going to get the death penalty. They'll be strung up and made to be laughed at out in the streets and made examples of!
Gates got up, but not fast or jerkily, with the same slowness that had always characterized him. He wiped the sweat off his palms by running them lightly down his sides. As though he were going to shake hands with somebody.He was. He was going to shake hands with death.He wasn't particularly frightened. Not that he was particularly brave. It was just that he didn't have very much imagination. Rationalizing, he knew that he wasn't going to be alive anymore ten minutes from now. Yet he wasn't used to casting his imagination ten minutes ahead of him, he'd always kept it by him in the present. He couldn't visualize it. So he wasn't as unnerved by it as the average man would have been.(3 Kills For 1)
It would take me a long time to understand how systems inflict pain and hardship in people's lives and to learn that being kind in an unjust system is not enough.
If the Pentateuch is inspired, the civilization of of our day is a mistake and crime. There should be no political liberty. Heresy should be trodden out beneath the bigot's brutal feet. Husbands should divorce their wives at will, and make the mothers of their children houseless and weeping wanderers. Polygamy ought to be practiced; women should become slaves; we should buy the sons and daughters of the heathen and make them bondmen and bondwomen forever. We should sell our own flesh and blood, and have the right to kill our slaves. Men and women should be stoned to death for laboring on the seventh day. 'Mediums,' such as have familiar spirits, should be burned with fire. Every vestige of mental liberty should be destroyed, and reason's holy torch extinguished in the martyr's blood.
[T]here are some human rights that are so deep that we can't negotiate them away. I mean people do heinous, terrible things. But there are basic human rights I believe that every human being has. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights in the United Nations says it for me. And it says there are two basic rights that can't be negotiated that government doesn't give for good behavior and doesn't take away for bad behavior. And it's the right not to be tortured and not to be killed. Because the flip side of this is that then when you say OK we're gonna turn over -- they truly have done heinous things, so now we will turn over to the government now the right to take their life. It involves other people in doing essentially the same kind of
In any case, frequent punishments are a sign of weakness or slackness in the government. There is no man so bad that he cannot be made good for something. No man should be put to death, even as an example, if he can be left to live without danger to society.
Since governments take the right of death over their people, it is not astonishing if the people should sometimes take the right of death over governm
There will always be cases that cry out to me for ultimate punishment. That is not the true issue. The pivotal question instead is whether a system of justice can be constructed that reaches only the rare, right cases, without also occasionally condemning the innocent or the undeserving.
A sentence which might bear in mind that our great struggle is that of fear, and that if a man has killed compulsively, it is because he was extremely frightened. Above all, a justice which might examine itself, & recognize that all of us, a living quagmire, founded in darkness, & for this reason not a man's evil should be cosigned to another man's evil: so that the latter may not shoot to kill without restraint or censure. A justice which will not forget that we are all dangerous, & that at the hour when the executant of justice kills, he is no longer protecting us or seeking to eliminate a criminal; he is committing his own crime, which he has been harboring for a considerable time. At the hour of killing a criminal- at that very moment, an innocent man is being put to death. No, no, I am not asking for the sublime, nor for the things which gradually become the words which help me to sleep peacefully. Those of us who take refuge in the abstract are a mixture of forgiveness & vague charity. What I want is something much harsher & much more difficult: I want the terrestrial.
The primitive idea of justice is partly legalized revenge and partly expiation by sacrifice. It works out from both sides in the notion that two blacks make a white, and that when a wrong has been done, it should be paid for by an equivalent suffering. It seems to the Philistine majority a matter of course that this compensating suffering should be inflicted on the wrongdoer for the sake of its deterrent effect on other would-be wrongdoers; but a moment's reflection will shew that this utilitarian application corrupts the whole transaction. For example, the shedding of blood cannot be balanced by the shedding of guilty blood. Sacrificing a criminal to propitiate God for the murder of one of his righteous servants is like sacrificing a mangy sheep or an ox with the rinderpest: it calls down divine wrath instead of appeasing it. In doing it we offer God as a sacrifice the gratification of our own revenge and the protection of our own lives without cost to ourselves; and cost to ourselves is the essence of sacrifice and expiation.
Without knowing it the girl was arguing on the side of the world's expert criminologists, who hold that to destroy an offender cannot benefit society so much as to redeem him.
They found him guilty, and brother, if Maine had the death penalty, he would have done the airdance before that spring's crocuses poked their heads out of the dirt.
I wrote that certain things were leaving me nauseated. I said that judges made me feel that way. Not most of them but all of them. I said that you for example, the judge I'm writing this to, made me feel nauseated. The nausea came from understanding that people produced by every conceivable advantage got to decide whether someone like Jalen lived or died and what was worse was they never fucking seemed to decide that the person should live, that a person's life, any person, was more important than whether some fat fuck at a country club thought you were hard enough on crime or whether you continue to get sufficient reelection campaign contributions you worthless retarded piece of shit. Why should you be allowed to decide anything beyond what you have for lunch you mental infant?
The condemned man’s voice is laced with dark promise as he continues. “Remember Father, evil is simply ‘live’ spelt backwards. Hellbound
There were eleven votes for guilty. It's not easy for me to raise my hand and send a boy off to die without talking about it first.
In Sing Sing Prison, in a ghastly white room stands a chair. Its parts are heavy joinings of oak, riveted and screwed together; its strong legs fastened to the floor with teeth and claws of steel. It bites into the marrow of men with fangs of fire. For this is the faldstool of bloody human justice, the prayer-chair of man’s vengeance upon man. Into it are strapped ... men who have killed other men. In it, for a high moral purpose, erring human lives are shocked across the barrier into night and the grave. - Edward H. Smith (1918)
Some guys get fifteen years, others get life.So death for Edbut not for everyone.Cos it all depends on who you kill and where you kill them too.Like,don't shoot a white cop in Walker Country, Texas. If that's your plan, do it in Arlington, New York- no needles of electric chairs there.Just doesn't seen fair to me.
The racial terrorism of lynchings in many ways created the modern death penalty. America's embrace of speedy executions was, in part, an attempt to redirect the violent energies of lynching while ensuring white southerners that Black men would still pay the ultimate price.