Why is the death penalty a right wing value?

Discussion in 'Politics Discussion' started by ScooterBrandon, Aug 8, 2015.

  1. ScooterBrandon

    ScooterBrandon Senior Investor

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    Politically I am far more conservative then anything else. I am also 100% against the death penalty.
    I always get attacked as being "liberal" when I tell people this, and I also don't understand how the the world giving the government the power to end the life of its own citizen is a conservative value. If you consider yourself a conservative and approve of the DP please tell me why.

    I don't support it for the following reasons:
    Governments exist as a service to it's citizens. Giving them the power to kill citizens (no matter what justification) turns this relationship on it's head, it's an affront to the rule of law and the social contract.
    I don't trust them with that power. If they make even one mistake then they have abused this power, death cannot be reserved. One mistake and one dead innocent citizen is not acceptable. I also don't trust that they will NEVER (not once) make this error.
    Once they have that power to murder a person for one crime, who's to say they won't use it for another. Perhaps treason will be added to the list, and treason will be modified to anyone who opposes the government. I say it's a slippery slope to oppression and using it to eliminate dissidents.

    Also I don't like the economics of it.
    Capital punishment trials cost millions while incarceration trials might break the 100K mark. Also it actually costs MORE to have a death row inmate (in some cases, in others is marginally less.)
    There is no compelling evidence to suggest that it acts as a deterrent to crime.
    Think about what most shooting spree people do at the end, they commit suicide.
    If death was such a deterrent they wouldn't work it into their plans.
    If death was such a deterrent then they wouldn't choose it over the fear of incarceration.
     
  2. Amin

    Amin Guest

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    As mush as unpleasant it is, the death penalty, it's necessary. why? because some criminals just deserve it...those who commit rape and murder, how they don't deserve this?
     
  3. ScooterBrandon

    ScooterBrandon Senior Investor

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    Who get's to decide which actions are deserving of death and which are not? Are these criteria able to change as time progresses?
    At points in history some pretty absurd things were grounds for capital punishment, like blasphemy or witchcraft. Some nation's still execute people for things that are not even criminalized in other countries.
    The criteria for who "deserves" death are open to prejudices and abuse.

    Many murderers have some justification for their actions, what makes us as a society not murderers?
    The only just exception for taking another's life is self defense. The death penalty is not self defense, by what stretch of the imagination is murdering someone for committing murder not a perversion of justice and against the rule of law?

    Sure, maybe in very exceptional circumstances some really awful terrible people deserve to be killed (I don't know if I actually believe that, that will take a bit of pondering but it's for the sake of this argument let's keep it simple), but how in the world could you ever develop a system that 100% right all the time with no exceptions, ever? As soon as one person is put to death that should not be, then that system is not just and that makes us as a society and our government murderers, which means we should all be put to death.
     
  4. JR Ewing

    JR Ewing Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I am pro-death penalty, but I believe that there should be a very high standard that should be reached (DNA, video evidence, fingerprints, etc, etc). I also believe that the ridiculous number of costly appeals granted should be greatly reduced - it generally takes at least 15-16 years to execute someone here IF they ever get executed - many criminals on death row die before they're ever executed.

    As for the government's role in actually carrying out the sentence, I'm perfectly OK with the jury allowing victims' families or other private citizens to carry out the execution, with the government perhaps only acting as a "referee" to make sure the execution doesn't go into the "cruel and unusual" realm.

    I'd gladly volunteer to be on any legal firing squads that would execute much of the scum that ends up getting the death sentence.
     
  5. anorexorcist

    anorexorcist Well-Known Member

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    I'm obviously not a conservative, and I'm pro death penalty, for example, if the person that is being executed killed 20 persons, that person don't deserve death penalty? Can you imagine how the family and friends of those 20 people that this person killed suffered? I may be a liberal queer, but I don't think its fair to let them live when they have caused so much pain in other people's lives.
     
  6. baudwalk

    baudwalk Senior Investor

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    A Smath & Wesson beats 4 Aces.
     
  7. petesede

    petesede Guest

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    the problem with the death penalty is that outside of Texas, people on death row live longer than people who get life-in-prison sentences because they are isolated from the general population. They have a much safer environment to live... well if you call it living.

    As for the original question.. The truth is it is the entire problem of a two party system.... you often don´t get to pick your bed-buddies. You could ask the same question as ´why are pro-gun people aligned with evangelical Christians... why are small gov´t activists aligned with pro-military groups... why is it that the democrats want to get rid of the death penalty, but want to allow abortions. None of it makes any sense except that these are binary questions and we only have 2 parties.

    Personally I am against the death penalty because it is MUCH more expensive for the gov´t to execute someone rather than just life in prison ( ironic, but true because of all the appeals processes and extra attention in prison). Sentencing someone to life in prison means they cost the gov´t less and they will die faster.... win win.
     
  8. kgord

    kgord Senior Investor

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    I think those that espouse right wing values are more likely to believe in an eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth mentality. I am liberal on most issues, and I favor the death penalty but only in the most extreme circumstances when there is no doubt about the guilt of the perpertrator. Some crimes need to have the death penalty as an option as far as I am concerned. I don't think it is a deterrent to crime...but if victims die in a horrific way and the families favor it, I think it should be a valid option.
     
  9. ScooterBrandon

    ScooterBrandon Senior Investor

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    JR I am sure you must know some military service people who have served overseas. You might even have some close to you.
    I want you to ask them what It feels like to take another humans life. I have a few vets in the family, we are all very proud of them. But you can tell taking someones life does nothing positive for a person. It wears on the soul and has negative psychological consequences. That's why many vets suffer from PTSD.
    Revenge killing will not make the victims families any better off. Revenge killing is not something an enlightened modern society should promote or endorse.

    I am still weary of what constitutes "high standards." I have doubts that no innocent person will ever be executed. Death is final, you can't go back and fix mistakes.
    Let's say you are on that firing squad and you kill someone who is later found out to be innocent, doesn't that make you a murderer deserving of the death penalty?
     
  10. SteakTartare

    SteakTartare Senior Investor

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    I tend to be pro-death penalty, though can understand the legal and ethical arguments to the contrary. The reason I generally support said is that some crimes warrant the ultimate penalty, some criminals are too dangerous to ever have the chance of being out, and the taxpayer shouldn't have to pay for all the expenses of housing such a monster. On the other hand, there has been some (albeit a small number) of individuals on death row that were later set free for various reasons (e.g., technicality or actual innocence). Some also believe that entrusting the state to exercise the killing of citizens opens the door for abuse, of which, history is replete with.

    Long story short (I know, too late), I lean pro death penalty, but am not nearly as solid on it as some other big issues.
     

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