Prosecutors seek death penalty for Gosnell

posted at 3:35 pm on March 2, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

If a state has to have a death penalty, then a serial killer of newborn infants has to be the gold standard for it, right?  Otherwise, what kind of murderer would ever get a death sentence?

Prosecutors in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania announced today they will seek the death penalty for abortion practitioner Kermit Gosnell, who faces charged related to killing a woman in a botched abortion and killing babies infanticides.

It’s not just Gosnell facing the ultimate penalty, either:

Assistant District Attorneys Joanne Pescatore and Christine Wechsler confirmed to the Philadelphia Inquirer newspaper that they are looking at pursuing the death penalty related to Gosnell and former Gosnell employees Lynda Williams, Steven Massof and Adrienne Moton. The three are accusing of assisting Gosnell in the infanticide “abortions” where unborn children late in pregnancy were purposefully birth in order to kill them by using medical scissors to “snip” their spinal cords.

Gosnell himself will likely face a potential death penalty as the prosecutors notified his attorney, Jack McMahon, that they will seek death by lethal injection if a jury finds Gosnell guilty of first-degree murder in the counts he faces. Gosnell faces a third-degree murder charge related to the death of 41-year-old Karnamaya Mongar from a botched abortion Gosnell performed. Mongar died November 20, 2009, after overdosing on anesthetics prescribed by the doctor.

The Inquirer reports that the decision to seek execution for Gosnell’s three co-defendants might be part of a strategy to tighten the proverbial noose around Gosnell’s neck, although prosecutors so far deny it … or mostly deny it:

The prosecutors, however, said they had agreed with the defense attorneys for the three to postpone a final decision on the death penalty for 60 days while both sides continue investigating the case.

Pescatore said the delay was not an indication that prosecutors were trying to negotiate a guilty plea in which they would testify against Gosnell.

“We didn’t know enough and they might want to tell us more things,” Pescatore said, referring to the 60-day extension.

Presumably, delaying in case the defendants tell the prosecutors “more things” suggests that those “things” might impact their decision on the penalty to seek.

Hot Air readers know that I oppose the death penalty in normal criminal proceedings, but this is the kind of case that can certainly cause one to question their opposition.  Gosnell murdered living babies fully born and separated from their mothers, and did so in a crude and cruel manner.  He kept trophies of his victims on shelves in his clinic.  If anyone doubts the cruelty and horrors visited upon these helpless infants and the women in the community, please be sure to read the grand jury report from start to finish, if you can stomach it. If the death penalty has any meaning at all, then Gosnell has to qualify for it.

Still, this may end up creating a cottage industry of Gosnell as a martyr, if previous death-penalty cases provide any track record at all.  We’ll be subject to numerous media pieces on Gosnell’s “service” to the community, a religious conversion or two, and probably even his artistic je ne sais quoi.  Free Kermit rallies will pop up all over Pennsylvania.  Inevitably, someone (or a whole bunch of someones) will play the race card, even though Gosnell made a fortune in his butchery and exploited the poor of his own community.

Give prosecutors credit: they know all of this, and probably better than anyone. After all, Mumia Abu Jamal got prosecuted in Philly, as did Ira Einhorn, who fled to France for decades and eventually avoided the death penalty.  They’re still determined to do what they believe is right for the victims and the community.

Update: The Anchoress prays that Gosnell takes the opportunity for redemption that this trial will give him, and believes living the rest of his natural life behind bars will at least allow him that opportunity:

If you remain unaware of what investigators (who were actually looking for evidence related to drug trafficking) found when they entered Gosnell’s abattoir-for-humansread the Grand Jury’s Report, if you can take it.

Nevertheless, I would defend this man’s right to live his life out in prison, rather than watch the state take his life. His life is not anyone else’s to take. For pro-lifers, this is a no-brainer.

And he may need many years and much time, in order to understand the enormity of what he has done, and allow his heart to be turned. He may need time for conversion and salvation.


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Comment pages: 1 2

Regarding your pillow argument, I hear where you’re coming from, but unfortunately the brainwashing of today’s society (it’s just a clump of cells) leaves these mothers confused and scared: abortion clinics WANT the mothers to believe they have no “choice” except for THEIR choice (abortion), forcing the mothers under duress to choose abortion.

I think the burden the mothers must carry for the rest of their lives post-abortion is punishment enough. Better to pray the mothers find forgiveness and can turn their lives around.

http://www.hopeafterabortion.com/

j6p on March 2, 2011 at 4:22 PM

I agree with you to a certain extent. My point is that these “mothers” had their abortion in the 2nd or even the 3rd trimester. That gave them 6 to 9 months of being pregnant and able to a) talk to someone other than an abortion clinic, b) feel their child moving, c) if they are going to go that long in their pregnancy, then have the baby and give it up for adoption. Their chilren were born ALIVE and breathing and this monster killed them. NOW talk about how they have to live with the guilt of seeing their breathing, moving child killed in front of their eyes. They had more than one choice…..they chose the “easy” way out. Sorry about the rant…

sicoit on March 2, 2011 at 4:33 PM

Would I be banned from HA if I were to describe what I would do to him?

Probably so, so I’ll keep my thoughts to myself on this one.

madmonkphotog on March 2, 2011 at 4:33 PM

Execute him with a pair of scissors to the brain-stem.

mojo on March 2, 2011 at 4:34 PM

Respectfully, sir/madam, I submit that Romans 13:4 runs counter to this.

There is no blood on our hands for executing justice as commanded on violent, murderous men.

KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 4:23 PM

That presumes that the death penalty is justice. The Church (in particular JPII but others as well) does not forbid the death penalty, but it should only be administered when another method is unavailable to prevent the felon from doing further harm. Life in prison does this, particularly life in solitary, and therefor it is not required that we take a life to exact justice.

tcn on March 2, 2011 at 4:34 PM

The grimly amusing aspect of all this is that we are debating the finer points of when it is acceptable to execute a man for murdering children, not realizing that we are already doomed as a culture, because we are debating his punishment only because he was inept enough to commit the murders at a certain point in the babies’ wrongfully short lives, namely, when they were a few feet away from their mother, as opposed to inside her.

And yet, we’re still talking about what’s acceptable punishment.

This nation is bloody doomed.

KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 4:35 PM

If ‘anything less than perfection’ is your standard then the second amendment should be disposed of because we know that mistakes with firearms will happen and again the innocent will die.

sharrukin on March 2, 2011 at 4:25 PM

Tish-tosh. The fact that a mistake might be made in defending yourself does not strip the right of self-defense from you. It means that if you make a mistake you will be (hopefully) be brought up on charges of manslaughter, murder, etc.

This is a categorical difference from the state taking the lives of innocent individuals. If for no other reason that restitution is impossible and mistakes are likely to never be discovered.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 4:36 PM

That presumes that the death penalty is justice. The Church (in particular JPII but others as well) does not forbid the death penalty, but it should only be administered when another method is unavailable to prevent the felon from doing further harm. Life in prison does this, particularly life in solitary, and therefor it is not required that we take a life to exact justice.

tcn on March 2, 2011 at 4:34 PM

I believe we are at some kind of miscommunication. The verse states that the rulers do not bear the sword in vain, not the keyring to the prison.

I don’t ever recall the Bible specifying life imprisonment for anything. I recall murderers and rapists being executed, but not imprisoning.

As far as I recall, there were no prisons in ancient Israel.

KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 4:37 PM

And yet, we’re still talking about what’s acceptable punishment.

This nation is bloody doomed.

KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 4:35 PM

With respect, I think that the fact that we DO debate this shows that we are somewhat better off than that. Stopping this man and his evil is a task that could very well determine if we are fully human or something less than that.

tcn on March 2, 2011 at 4:39 PM

All these statements (and more) are good reasons to question whether or not execution is justice or vengeance.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 4:22 PM

A few passionate comments here regarding a murdering, torturous “Doctor” are hardly signs of some vengeful lynching party.

Calmer heads are in charge, and will decide the penalty.

portlandon on March 2, 2011 at 4:39 PM

As far as I recall, there were no prisons in ancient Israel.

KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 4:37 PM

My point exactly. When it is not possible to lock this bastard away for life, then the death penalty is clearly called for.

tcn on March 2, 2011 at 4:40 PM

The role of the state is to use force in the keeping of the peace, within the boundaries established by its founding documents or ruling families (depending on the form of governance). It’s like saying you play no part in killing animals for food because you buy your meat in a grocery store.

Sekhmet on March 2, 2011 at 4:33 PM

The role of the sate is to maintain the peace as inobtrusively as possible, while infringing on as few rights as possible, while consuming the fewest resources possible, and using the absolute minimum of force required.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 4:40 PM

As far as I recall, there were no prisons in ancient Israel.

KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 4:37 PM

Not true. Saw one in “Ben Hur”. Nasty place, too.

BobMbx on March 2, 2011 at 4:40 PM

As far as I recall, there were no prisons in ancient Israel.

KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 4:37 PM

There were a lot of stonings and, post-Rome, crucifixions. Hooray!

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 4:43 PM

Tish-tosh. The fact that a mistake might be made in defending yourself does not strip the right of self-defense from you. It means that if you make a mistake you will be (hopefully) be brought up on charges of manslaughter, murder, etc.

The right of self defense? How can you support that when once again if we allow that in an imperfect world we will see the death of innocents and that sanctioned by the state legal system? That seems acceptable to you, but the state acting in a similar capacity with convicted murderers doesn’t? The state is a lot less likely to make a mistake than a frightened individual in the dark of night.

This is a categorical difference from the state taking the lives of innocent individuals. If for no other reason that restitution is impossible and mistakes are likely to never be discovered.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 4:36 PM

If ‘anything less than perfection’ is your standard for not acting then you must oppose military action that will see the death of innocents. There has never been a war where that hasn’t happened. Bombs go astray and artillery shells don’t always land where we might wish.

So you do oppose all military action? That is the state taking the lives of innocent individuals.

sharrukin on March 2, 2011 at 4:43 PM

Calmer heads are in charge, and will decide the penalty.

portlandon on March 2, 2011 at 4:39 PM

You do understand you’re talking about PA, where neither the state nor the US Justice department gave a fat rats’ ass about the Black Panthers interfering with an election.

My people. (pssst…Eric…this guy murdered a whole bunch of your people……I’m willing to bet that over his career, he killed a sizable number of your people that would rival all the white racist lynchings of blacks since the civil war).

One guy vs. every redneck ever born.

BobMbx on March 2, 2011 at 4:44 PM

I agree with you to a certain extent. My point is that these “mothers” had their abortion in the 2nd or even the 3rd trimester. That gave them 6 to 9 months of being pregnant and able to a) talk to someone other than an abortion clinic, b) feel their child moving, c) if they are going to go that long in their pregnancy, then have the baby and give it up for adoption. Their chilren were born ALIVE and breathing and this monster killed them. NOW talk about how they have to live with the guilt of seeing their breathing, moving child killed in front of their eyes. They had more than one choice…..they chose the “easy” way out. Sorry about the rant…

sicoit on March 2, 2011 at 4:33 PM

It is a maddening thing to think through, is it not?

Personally, I see the matter as the prophets of Baal versus Elijah at Mount Carmel in 1 Kings. The vast majority of women who’ve had abortions being the children of Israel, the prophets of Baal being the Gosnells, the Sangers, the Tillers. Don’t ask me who Elijah is represented by, ain’t nobody in this damn country making this enough of an issue to fill those shoes.

Point being, the populace is shallow, and easily deceived, as we all know very well from reading the news daily. It’s difficult to fathom how a mother could do that to her child, aye, but I feel little other than pity and grief for the mothers, whereas my anger is reserved for the men and women who lie to the people, as they gleefully dissolve children in acids and salts, and collect their blood money.

I try not to think about it too much, knowing as I do that their punishment comes as surely as the sun rises every day, but some days, it’s hard to accept the fact that I live in a world that smiles upon murdering one’s helpless child, and calls it freedom.

Reviling.

KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 4:45 PM

Not true. Saw one in “Ben Hur”. Nasty place, too.

BobMbx on March 2, 2011 at 4:40 PM

LMAO!!!!! Good one…;-)

sicoit on March 2, 2011 at 4:45 PM

The right of self defense? How can you support that when once again if we allow that in an imperfect world we will see the death of innocents and that sanctioned by the state legal system?

The right of self defense is an individual right – the state is an institution and I question institutional rights to terminate the lives of individuals.

So you do oppose all military action? That is the state taking the lives of innocent individuals.

sharrukin on March 2, 2011 at 4:43 PM

I oppose military action taken under circumstances that do not meet a clearly defined standard of what constitutes a just war. I also believe that military actions that use indiscriminate violence that does not distinguish between warrior and civilian life is an abomination that should be prosecuted through any and all legal avenues.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 4:47 PM

There were a lot of stonings and, post-Rome, crucifixions. Hooray!

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 4:43 PM

So we are equating the madness of the Dark Ages church to God’s commanded justice in the Old Testament? Um, no sir. Not kosher.

Hell, before Paul’s very eyes, Ananias and Sapphira were struck dead for lying to God about their oh-so-wonderful generosity.

No one ever said justice was pretty, or pleasant. :( But it is necessary, all the same.

KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 4:50 PM

Reviling.

KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 4:45 PM

That about sums up alot. Our society has become emotionally deprived. We have been dumbed down to feel very little compassion, love, kindness, etc. and it is getting worse. When we are continuously told it’s all about you/don’t worry about anyone else/take what you can get because you deserve it just because you’re breathing….goin to hell in a hand basket.

sicoit on March 2, 2011 at 4:50 PM

Good.

Now go get a guilty verdict.

This Doctor’s actions have really set back the pro-abortion industry thanks to the media scrutiny and the fact that this tragic story has played out over and over on a loop on the alphabet and cable networks for the last couple of months.

Oh wait, nevermind. I remember now, the MSM decided that there was nothing to see here. This story just doesn’t fit their narrative.

chief on March 2, 2011 at 4:50 PM

My point exactly. When it is not possible to lock this bastard away for life, then the death penalty is clearly called for.

tcn on March 2, 2011 at 4:40 PM

Well, what I’m saying sir is that there was never a command to lock people up forever and ever, so I don’t understand where we’re getting the idea that it is ‘better’ to lock Gosnell up, rather than shoot him, bury him, and set a harsh example.

KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 4:51 PM

You’re damn right he and his assistants should get the death penalty. They shouldn’t get any appeals either. The ones they killed didn’t do anything to deserve death, so these fishtards shouldn’t be shown any mercy either.

Mirimichi on March 2, 2011 at 4:51 PM

That about sums up alot. Our society has become emotionally deprived. We have been dumbed down to feel very little compassion, love, kindness, etc. and it is getting worse. When we are continuously told it’s all about you/don’t worry about anyone else/take what you can get because you deserve it just because you’re breathing….goin to hell in a hand basket.

sicoit on March 2, 2011 at 4:50 PM

Yes. ; ; Exactly.

KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 4:52 PM

No doubt the pro-abortion crowd will be crying about how this prosecution will force women into those “back-alley” abortions. /

katiejane on March 2, 2011 at 3:45 PM

No doubt they will. But there is not even a fine line between the back-alley and Gosnell’s office. Moreover, back-alley abortionists do not exhibit their victims.

Dan Tanna on March 2, 2011 at 4:55 PM

With respect, I think that the fact that we DO debate this shows that we are somewhat better off than that. Stopping this man and his evil is a task that could very well determine if we are fully human or something less than that.

tcn on March 2, 2011 at 4:39 PM

Dunno. Personally, I think we’re too far gone as a nation to bounce back.

There’s a tremendous amount of blood on our hands (and the Leftists cry out in agreement), because we’re murdering our own children by the millions (Leftists shriek in rage), and doing precious close to nothing about it.

Our legacy for the past forty years: Fifty million dead, and counting.

And they weren’t even our political opponents. They’re our damn kids.

Stalin’s down in Hell, stroking his beard in admiration for our ruthlessness.

KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 4:55 PM

KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 4:50 PM

That was supposed to be a bit of a joke to the person who said there did not remember prisons. It wasn’t a reference to the dark ages and post-Rome Jerusalem would have included the period Christ was alive. As well, there clearly were prisons – there are several explicit mentions of prisons in the NT and visiting prisoners is clearly mentioned as something compassionate to do.

I’ll try to use levity in the future.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 4:57 PM

Would I be banned from HA if I were to describe what I would do to him?

Probably so, so I’ll keep my thoughts to myself on this one.

madmonkphotog on March 2, 2011 at 4:33 PM

Only if they ban me too for reading your post. I have some murderous thoughts on my mind, too.

Mirimichi on March 2, 2011 at 4:58 PM

I oppose military action taken under circumstances that do not meet a clearly defined standard of what constitutes a just war. I also believe that military actions that use indiscriminate violence that does not distinguish between warrior and civilian life is an abomination that should be prosecuted through any and all legal avenues.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 4:47 PM

So Truman, LeMay, and the bomber crews from World War Two are war criminals? They carried out mass bombings of civilian targets including the destruction of entire cities with nuclear weapons.

The right of self defense is an individual right – the state is an institution and I question institutional rights to terminate the lives of individuals.

It seems to me that you are holding the state to an impossible standard of ‘perfection’ which you know very well it cannot meet so that you can justify a pre-established conclusion. If the death of innocents is the point then it shouldn’t matter if the state does it, or an individual does it.

the state is an institution and I question institutional rights to terminate the lives of individuals

So Police have no right to use lethal force?

sharrukin on March 2, 2011 at 4:59 PM

I’ll try to use levity in the future.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 4:57 PM

Ok, give it up…..are you Spock or Data????? :-)

sicoit on March 2, 2011 at 4:59 PM

That was supposed to be a bit of a joke to the person who said there did not remember prisons. It wasn’t a reference to the dark ages and post-Rome Jerusalem would have included the period Christ was alive. As well, there clearly were prisons – there are several explicit mentions of prisons in the NT and visiting prisoners is clearly mentioned as something compassionate to do.

I’ll try to use levity in the future.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 4:57 PM

>_< I apologize, sir. I am sometimes quite dense.

KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 5:00 PM

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 4:57 PM

*sigh* so many typos. Auto-correct on – auto-correct off. I’m just crap at typing at conversational speeds and vaguely jealous of my nephew that can clearly text message faster on 2.5 inch keyboard than I can with thick glasses and a full sized board.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 5:00 PM

I also believe that military actions that use indiscriminate violence that does not distinguish between warrior and civilian life is an abomination that should be prosecuted through any and all legal avenues.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 4:47 PM

At the risk of seeming to “pile on”, which is not my intent, but the quote above intrigues me.

1. In a justified war, you accept the killing of warriors, but not civilians. And when the warrior and civilian cannot be distinguished from each other by mutual agreement, what then? What, in your mind, constitutes a “warrior”?

2. In the past, indiscriminate violence was the result of one of two things:

a. Intentional violence used against unarmed or otherwise defenseless persons who may or may not be combatants or,

b. Technology, or to be more accurate, the lack of technology. Through terrible financial cost, the US and other western countries now field terrifyingly accurate weapons whose purpose is to reduce collateral damage and total need for weapons in a conflict.

Would you agree that, at least relative to the US, that the more advanced countries put great concern on eliminating collateral damage, and that the less advanced countries don’t give a damn?

BobMbx on March 2, 2011 at 5:00 PM

Well, what I’m saying sir is that there was never a command to lock people up forever and ever, so I don’t understand where we’re getting the idea that it is ‘better’ to lock Gosnell up, rather than shoot him, bury him, and set a harsh example.

KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 4:51 PM

Because “Vengeance is mine, sayeth the Lord.” Yes, a couple did drop dead for lying to the Apostles, but the Apostles didn’t do the killing.

tcn on March 2, 2011 at 5:01 PM

>_< I apologize, sir. I am sometimes quite dense.

KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 5:00 PM

Very little reason to apologize. It’s not exactly the sort of thread that makes for lots of jokes and it wasn’t a very good joke to begin with.

Truth be told it’s not the first time that a room full of people just looked at me akwardly after I made a “joke”.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 5:01 PM

His life is not anyone else’s to take. For pro-lifers, this is a no-brainer.

Whoa right there. I’m not inclined to agree that it is a no-brainer. I’m pro-life but, if you want to get picky, I’m pro-innnocent-life. There’s a big moral and ethical difference between killing a child in the womb and executing someone who has been put on trial by a legitimate and impartial judicial system and found guilty by a jury of peers.

landshark on March 2, 2011 at 5:01 PM

Nevertheless, I would defend this man’s right to live his life out in prison, rather than watch the state take his life. His life is not anyone else’s to take. For pro-lifers, this is a no-brainer.

Pro-life is the same as anti-death penalty?

misterpeasea on March 2, 2011 at 5:02 PM

Truth be told it’s not the first time that a room full of people just looked at me akwardly after I made a “joke”.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 5:01 PM

You’re Barack! I just know it.

BobMbx on March 2, 2011 at 5:06 PM

1. In a justified war, you accept the killing of warriors, but not civilians. And when the warrior and civilian cannot be distinguished from each other by mutual agreement, what then? What, in your mind, constitutes a “warrior”?

Not QUITE. I would abhor the deliberate targeting of civilians. If a fighter sincerely believes that he is targeting another fighter that is one thing – if he KNOWS that he is targeting civilians there is something completely different going on …

Would you agree that, at least relative to the US, that the more advanced countries put great concern on eliminating collateral damage, and that the less advanced countries don’t give a damn?

BobMbx on March 2, 2011 at 5:00 PM

Historically speaking – most countries have taken care at least nominal care to minimize “collateral” damage if only so there would be taxable citizens and productive industry for you to rule over when you were done. Higher technology certainly makes that goal easier and lower technology usually means less well directed violence.

That being said a number of countries have obviously not given a tinker’s damn about minimizing civilian casualties. We call them war criminals and prosecute and imprison them.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 5:07 PM

Because “Vengeance is mine, sayeth the Lord.” Yes, a couple did drop dead for lying to the Apostles, but the Apostles didn’t do the killing.

tcn on March 2, 2011 at 5:01 PM

What does the Marine Corps say about this stuff?

“It’s Gods’ job to judge people. It’s our job to arrange the meeting.”

BobMbx on March 2, 2011 at 5:08 PM

The role of the sate is to maintain the peace as inobtrusively as possible, while infringing on as few rights as possible, while consuming the fewest resources possible, and using the absolute minimum of force required.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 4:40 PM

That is the ideal of the state, not the role it actually plays. If Jack the Ripper stalked the streets of Tripoli when Khadaffi was in charge, his government would still be justified in going after him.

Sekhmet on March 2, 2011 at 5:10 PM

What does the Marine Corps say about this stuff?

“It’s Gods’ job to judge people. It’s our job to arrange the meeting.”

BobMbx on March 2, 2011 at 5:08 PM

LMAO….again. My brother, a Marine, has that bumper sticker on his truck and I.HAVE.THE.T.SHIRT! WOOT! Oh, yes and Semper Fi!

sicoit on March 2, 2011 at 5:11 PM

Because “Vengeance is mine, sayeth the Lord.” Yes, a couple did drop dead for lying to the Apostles, but the Apostles didn’t do the killing.

tcn on March 2, 2011 at 5:01 PM

Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed. — Genesis 9:6

“But he answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition? For God commanded, saying, Honour thy father and mother: and, He that curseth father or mother, let him die the death.” Matthew 15:3-4

sharrukin on March 2, 2011 at 5:13 PM

Not QUITE. I would abhor the deliberate targeting of civilians. If a fighter sincerely believes that he is targeting another fighter that is one thing – if he KNOWS that he is targeting civilians there is something completely different going on …

I completely agree. Mi Lai comes to mind. However, my question was directed more towards the inability to identify between warrior and civilian. Without uniforms, formations, or any of those things which identify you as a combatant, you blend in with the civilian population, using them as cover. What are your thoughts in this scenario? Interestingly enough, this is the type of war we are currently fighting.

BobMbx on March 2, 2011 at 5:13 PM

BobMbx on March 2, 2011 at 5:13 PM

Ahhhhh .. that IS different. I would say that our fighters are under a moral obligation to ensure – as reasonably as possible – that they are targeting fighters and not civilians. Intent matters quite a bit here. (Enough of my former Catholocism has stuck to me to insist on that.) If, however, they take no steps or precautions to avoid civilian deaths or merely kill without discrimination they should be brought to justice.

II would say that people that actively attempt to pass as civilians when engaging in open fighting are also guilty of grave moral violations.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 5:20 PM

That is the ideal of the state, not the role it actually plays. If Jack the Ripper stalked the streets of Tripoli when Khadaffi was in charge, his government would still be justified in going after him.

Sekhmet on March 2, 2011 at 5:10 PM

I would say that it is the role of the state to do those things not the ideal – it matters not to me if it’s a republic, a monarchy, a theocracy, etc. Each of those forms of government are ideals that express what those reasonable limits are but a state that doesn’t attempt to act within those limits is off the rails.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 5:22 PM

I’m loving the conundrum this puts the leftists in.

On the one hand, the last thing they want is for a criminal, especially a leftist criminal, to get the death penalty. They hate it almost as much as they love abortion.

On the other hand, they’ve so far completely ignored this story, for whatever reasons (and we all know what they are).

So now, knowing full well how desperately they want to speak up and defend this waste, they have to keep their mouths shut knowing full well they have to still keep his crimes under wraps.

What’s a leftist to do???

runawayyyy on March 2, 2011 at 5:24 PM

I suggedt a “Partial Birth” execution.

Hunting knife to the base of the neck.

davidk on March 2, 2011 at 5:28 PM

The truly important question is: Can the press keep the lid on this?

Vashta.Nerada on March 2, 2011 at 5:30 PM

What does the Marine Corps say about this stuff?

“It’s Gods’ job to judge people. It’s our job to arrange the meeting.”

BobMbx on March 2, 2011 at 5:08 PM

Yep. But it’s still not vengeance.

tcn on March 2, 2011 at 5:34 PM

Are you kidding, Ed? The pro-abortion crowd is going to go effing nuts on this one.

To them, these are simply partial-birth abortions, supported by the great majority of Americans as medically necessary and constitutionally protected procedures for womyn’s health and freedom from the patriarchy.

In 3, 2, 1…

Jaibones on March 2, 2011 at 5:35 PM

Jaibones on March 2, 2011 at 5:35 PM

I work with a lot of democrats and leftists in my industry (they’re all over arts like roaches on a dead duck)and this comment is way off base. Most of the onse I’ve spoken to about it were repulsed and horrified by the case. Of course, most people aren’t event aware of it. This happened forever ago to them and somebody burnt down a day care more recently.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 5:40 PM

I would say that our fighters are under a moral obligation to ensure – as reasonably as possible – that they are targeting fighters and not civilians. Intent matters quite a bit here.

An honest answer, I believe.

And just to make it clear, in a justified war when one cannot distinguish between warrior and civilian, after taking all reasonable and moral actions possible to reduce the chance of killing a civilian in error or as collateral damage, sometimes it happens.

Nobody likes it (well, there are some…). This is one of the costs of war.

Now, why did I go down this winding road in a post about Dr. Mengele from PA?

It all sort of ties together. Gosnell is a mass murderer who hides behind the “abortion doesn’t kill babies” sector of our society. He doesn’t give a hoot about collateral damage after the abortion procedure (filthy rooms, infections, dead clients, etc…), and he gets paid to do it.

He deserves nothing than the enemy warrior gets….reasonable and moral consideration, just before we pull the trigger on him.

BobMbx on March 2, 2011 at 5:40 PM

Even a government totally off the rails and violating rights cannot be blamed for keeping the peace by taking an actual criminal off the streets. By the same token, if a culture is inclined to distrust the government and its claims of justice, inadequately punishing a lawbreaker can cause the culture’s inhabitants to go around the law to ensure proper punishment.

The squatter situation in England is about to come to a boil–where homeowners who leave their homes to go on vacation find themselves locked out by squatters. The law gives the right to the squatters, so many homeowners simply go down to the pub with some pound notes, and get some lads to give the squatters a “talking to.” If the law would punish squatters and force them to vacate, violence would not be needed.

Sekhmet on March 2, 2011 at 5:40 PM

I would expect no less.

Someone needs to be made an example of.

gary4205 on March 2, 2011 at 5:44 PM

Nevertheless, I would defend this man’s right to live his life out in prison, rather than watch the state take his life. His life is not anyone else’s to take. For pro-lifers, this is a no-brainer.

That is not only incorrect, it is insulting. This argument equates the killing of innocents with the post-trial (and multiple appeal) punishment dealt to a deadly criminal.

Vashta.Nerada on March 2, 2011 at 5:46 PM

BobMbx on March 2, 2011 at 5:40 PM

I did see where you were heading with it but I would still disagree with some of what you say. Once arms are laid down even a war criminal gets a trial – death penalties are on the table as a potential punishment there just as they are here for murder – neither one nor the other lends weight to the state having some institutional right, responsibility, or call to take the lives of human beings.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 5:47 PM

That is not only incorrect, it is insulting. This argument equates the killing of innocents with the post-trial (and multiple appeal) punishment dealt to a deadly criminal.

Vashta.Nerada on March 2, 2011 at 5:46 PM

It equates the killing of one human being with the killing of another human being. Someone who believes in an inviolate right to life and also belives that life begins at conception would rightfully call this fellow a murderer but this would not make him any less human or diminish his inviolate right to life.

It’s both consistent and coherent – which is not to say correct but it doesn’t equate the murder of an innocent with the execution of a murderer – it equates the termination of human life.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 5:50 PM

It equates the killing of one human being with the killing of another human being. Someone who believes in an inviolate right to life and also belives that life begins at conception would rightfully call this fellow a murderer but this would not make him any less human or diminish his inviolate right to life.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 5:50 PM

So how do you feel about “justifiable homicide?” If I were to kill someone because (right or wrong) I feel mine or another life to be in danger, am I on the right side of the law? Would I be right with God?

gryphon202 on March 2, 2011 at 5:52 PM

It’s been pleasant talking (? – reluctant to say that given the subject) but I must go. It is most isntructive to hear the differing opinions of others on the matter of the death penalty.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 5:52 PM

Nevertheless, I would defend this man’s right to live his life out in prison, rather than watch the state take his life. His life is not anyone else’s to take. For pro-lifers, this is a no-brainer.

Stupid, retarded, dumbass comment.

Darth Executor on March 2, 2011 at 5:56 PM

It equates the killing of one human being with the killing of another human being.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 5:50 PM

Which changes nothing because we still have one innocent human being and one serial killer human being. Trying to rephrase it into broad terms doesn’t change the idiocy of the comment.

Darth Executor on March 2, 2011 at 5:59 PM

IMPORTANT: This comment is strictly addressed to my Brothers and Sisters (including the Anchoress) who self-identify as Christian believers.

Please tell me how we square these two statements:

His life is not anyone else’s to take. For pro-lifers, this is a no-brainer.
- The Anchoress

Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment.

For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, for he is God’s servant for your good.

But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer.

Rom 13:1-4 – The Apostle Paul

Paul’s admonition to the Romans unequivocally asserts that it is the state’s responsibility and authority to exact justice upon evildoers. – And this responsibility/authority has been conferred by God himself.

If you would argue that this only authorizes the state to punish but not to kill . . . what do you think a sword is for?

We may disagree with each other about the death penalty, but I think the Anchoress’ argument that this is a “no brainer for pro-lifers” is just not true.

The Ritz on March 2, 2011 at 6:01 PM

Because “Vengeance is mine, sayeth the Lord.” Yes, a couple did drop dead for lying to the Apostles, but the Apostles didn’t do the killing.

tcn on March 2, 2011 at 5:01 PM

I’ll leave his immortal soul to a higher power’s disposition but IMO his corporal body is subject to the criminal laws of the land.

katiejane on March 2, 2011 at 6:01 PM

Outfrigginstanding

Except that I still can’t wrap my head around taking a life as a penalty/punishment for taking lives.

But then, the whole horrendously abhorrent abortion game and the money changing for services rendered in murdering the most innocent of all human beings and justifying it as an inherent right, under any and all circumstances be they a matter of convenience or simply a whim, to destroy what is so easily and off the cuff dismissed as ‘just a clump of cells’ akin to a skin flag or a wart makes my skin crawl.

I used to be pro-death penalty but I am no longer. Every society has prisons and as such it should be the unquestionable obligation of an evolved, civilized and enlightened society to all of its residents, whether psychopathic baby murderer or other, to incarcerate them for the rest of their natural lives with absolutely no hope for release, ever, ironclad and irrevocable. At the same time an evolved, civilized and enlightened society wouldn’t be sanctioning abortion as a tax-payer subsidized money making factory industry either.

Life imprisonment accomplishes what needs to be done in all respects and it gives the damned as much time as the good Lord deems enough to redeem themselves and atone if they freely choose to. Then they shall be truly judged. Money is not a consideration and those who believe saving a few buck by switching to death are simply morbidly absurd. Otherwise, how is it possible to justify the taking of a life as a penalty in an evolved, civilized and enlightened society?

Oh. Yeah. That pesky evolved, civilized and enlightened society sanctioning unborn baby murder as a money making factory industry thing again.

But this case –this case– and the decision to seek the ultimate penalty vexes me and while it gives me pause to reflect on my personal feelings regarding the death penalty I come away after a time still pro-life… for everyone.

However, again, if he and the others see the ceiling of the death chamber strapped to their backs as the last thing they ever see on this Earth as adjudicated and decided by a jury of their peers then justice still has been served by rule and law in our current society. An abhorrent not-so-civilized after all justice, but justice nonetheless.

Therein lies my current infinitely looping personal quandary.

FlatFoot on March 2, 2011 at 6:02 PM

Paul’s admonition to the Romans unequivocally asserts that it is the state’s responsibility and authority to exact justice upon evildoers. – And this responsibility/authority has been conferred by God himself.

If you would argue that this only authorizes the state to punish but not to kill . . . what do you think a sword is for?

We may disagree with each other about the death penalty, but I think the Anchoress’ argument that this is a “no brainer for pro-lifers” is just not true.

The Ritz on March 2, 2011 at 6:01 PM

You are talking about the God of the bible. They, in far too many cases are talking about The Great Care-Bear In The Sky. The Great Care-Bear is love and hugs and doesn’t have a mean bone in his body.

sharrukin on March 2, 2011 at 6:07 PM

I’ll leave his immortal soul to a higher power’s disposition but IMO his corporal body is subject to the criminal laws of the land.

katiejane on March 2, 2011 at 6:01 PM

HERE HERE…….E.X.A.C.T.L.Y.! Excellent katiejane….just excellent…. *bows to the master of wording*

sicoit on March 2, 2011 at 6:07 PM

In this case the death penalty might actually serve as a deterrent. I always doubt whether murders that occur as crimes of passion are deterred by the death penalty possibility… nobody is really thinking ahead in those cases.

But for abortion doctors who might be now, or in the future, tempted to go beyond the limits of the law as it now stands, this might be a deterrent.

That is little comfort considering that the difference between legal or illegal is only a few seconds in the life and death of a human baby. Small comfort is found in anything to do with this story.

petunia on March 2, 2011 at 6:10 PM

If a state has to have a death penalty, then a serial killer of newborn infants has to be the gold standard for it, right?

Where does that leave our president, who voted against the Illinois newborn infant survival act?

paul1149 on March 2, 2011 at 6:18 PM

Let us not forget that this POS did this for what…..40 years!!!!!??????? and got away with it for that long.

sicoit on March 2, 2011 at 6:22 PM

I read a significant portion of the GJ document, including the pictures.

Animals will fight to survive, kill when cornered or for food, neglect the weak among them so the herd/group has a better chance for survival… there is nothing akin to the butchery described in this document in the animal kingdom.

If ever you were to believe there was a devil who would twist and corrupt hearts, it will be after reading that document. The depravity, callousness and reckless disregard for the welfare of other humans or helpless babies; the dehumanizing manner with which he treated women, getting angry if he was called because of a complication, requiring the women to be so drugged up so as not to utter one peep during the process… it’s a wonder more women didn’t die.

Just every horrible thing you might think of in a situation like this – unsterilised instruments, (resulted in transferred venereal diseases), broken resuscitation equipment, having unlicenced people (including a 16 year old), give doses of potent sedatives and painkillers, pets soiling the premises… Pennsylvania’s DOH, and other agencies should be raked over the coals for this, too. He has problems going back to 1972.

There are good people in this world; there are also evil people. The GJ document is an unfortunate chronicle of just how abysmally deep cruelty and evil can go.

linlithgow on March 2, 2011 at 6:35 PM

Whoa right there. I’m not inclined to agree that it is a no-brainer. I’m pro-life but, if you want to get picky, I’m pro-innnocent-life. There’s a big moral and ethical difference between killing a child in the womb and executing someone who has been put on trial by a legitimate and impartial judicial system and found guilty by a jury of peers.

landshark on March 2, 2011 at 5:01 PM

Yup. The baby hasn’t had a chance to be evil. The grown man has consciously decided to choose to kill an innocent. Although I agree with The Anchoress for the most part, a no-brainer it is not.

Is Philadelphia Shari’a compliant yet? Gosnell would be a candidate for some gnarly “eye-for-an-eye” style death penalty action, if so.

…And that’s where my own ideas about the death penalty unravel.

NTWR on March 2, 2011 at 6:36 PM

If the law would punish squatters and force them to vacate, violence would not be needed.

Sekhmet on March 2, 2011 at 5:40 PM

When this country was being settled, it was left to good men to dispense justice where there was no official law enforcement.

If our society breaks down to the point where we have law officers but no law enforcement, this will again occur.

Some of us are way too eager, however. I can’t wait for the day when a Black Panther tries to stop me from voting or some union goon tries to interfere with my lawful actions.

davidk on March 2, 2011 at 7:06 PM

Gosnell should be put to death not only as a murderer…but as an incurable psychopath. Keeping ‘souvenirs’ like he did is a long-running mark of someone who is hopelessly sick in the head; a walking timebomb of a mental flipout that WILL hurt innocent(s).

Dark-Star on March 2, 2011 at 7:29 PM

The US should bring back hanging and the electric chair as the two methods of execution in our country.

This laying sown on a table and just going to sleep is just BS.

Hell, Ive felt like doing that myself at times.

Old eagle on March 2, 2011 at 8:40 PM

Our president and his disturbed wife support what this man did.

I just really don’t get the reasoning here from people who support legalized abortion.

There’s not a single person in the world who can make an argument that what Gosnell did was horrific, but what Planned Parenthood does every day is just a “choice.”

Let’s see…Gosnell delivered the babies completely and then stabbed them in the neck.

Planned Parenthood used to deliver them 95% and then stab them in the neck (with the support of the Obama’s) but now they use the technique where they merely rip the baby apart limb by limb inside the womb.

Of course, the more “compassionate” abortionists just deliver the babies alive and let them slowly suffocate to death due to immature lung development. Obama was a big fan of this one.

Vera on March 2, 2011 at 9:28 PM

a walking timebomb of a mental flipout that WILL hurt innocent(s).

He devoted his entire life to hurting innocents.

Vera on March 2, 2011 at 9:29 PM

I think he need to be put to death in the most humane way possible. Not for his sake but for ours.

Slowburn on March 3, 2011 at 4:07 AM

Just imagine, in their efforts to avoid “harassing” abortionists, these state inspectors basically exposed those young women to all of the dangers of back alley abortionists.

disa on March 3, 2011 at 7:26 AM

You have to convict them man before you can punish him. Considering the mindsets of many in the pro-abortion crowd, Gosnell could still end up going free.

zoyclem on March 3, 2011 at 7:42 AM

The criminals here are planned parenthood and the mothers of the children killed.
Every mother is an accessory to murder.
The money spent on abortion would be better spent on FLORENCE CRITTENTON homes.
As for the Doctor he needs to rot in a hulk moored at the dock of Dartmoor.

Col.John Wm. Reed on March 3, 2011 at 8:13 AM

I think he need to be put to death in the most humane way possible. Not for his sake but for ours.

Slowburn on March 3, 2011 at 4:07 AM
.
A 7 man squad,13 cents each, one with a blank at 15 feet.

Col.John Wm. Reed on March 3, 2011 at 8:16 AM

As far as I recall, there were no prisons in ancient Israel.
KinleyArdal on March 2, 2011 at 4:37 PM

The NT takes frequently of prisons and prisoners. Both Paul and Peter were locked up in “prisons” on occasion. Herod put John the Baptist in prison. Paul tells us to visit the prisoner as well as taking care of widows and orphans. This command to visit the prisoner was not just for company. Prisoners were not fed or taked care of in ancieint Israel. If nobody came to bring food and other essentials then the prisoner starved to death. This doesn’t mean the death penalty is not Biblical – Romans 13 makes clear that it is very Biblical. But there were prisons in ancient Israel.

tommyboy on March 3, 2011 at 8:18 AM

Chilling, in a good way.

hawkdriver on March 3, 2011 at 9:18 AM

Genesis 9:6 is one the verses in which God establishes the death penalty; since He says it is valid, I believe it is. However, it must be administered fairly. In my state, death row inmates have an appeals process that can last more than 20 years. That’s about twice as long as in other states, I’ve read.

As for the deterrent effect, I believe that the only reason to execute someone is because he/she deserves it, not because it will deter someone else from committing murder. The Mafia kills people as an example to others.

By the way, in my state, premeditated murder does not earn one the death penalty. Murder must be accompanied by an aggravating felony such as rape, kidnapping, arson or armed robbery in order to be death-eligible.

The most common felony aggravator is armed robbery, as in the killing of a convenience store clerk.

Kentucky’s death row currently has 30 whites, 8 blacks and 1 Hispanic. To read about the crimes that got them there, please go to http://www.lexingtonprosecutor.com/death_row.

KyMouse on March 3, 2011 at 9:58 AM

If the link I mentioned at 9:58 a.m. to read about Kentucky’s death row inmates is broken, search for the “lexington prosecutor death row” and you’ll see a hit for it.

The inmates include Virginia Caudill: On March 15, 1998, this killer and accomplice, Jonathon Goforth, entered the home of a 73-year-old woman and beat her to death. Her skull was shattered. After killing her, they burglarized her home. They then placed her body in the trunk of her own car and drove her to a rural area in Fayette County and set the car on fire. The victim was burned so badly that she could not be recognized.
Caudill and Goforth were sentenced to death in March of 2000.

KyMouse on March 3, 2011 at 10:03 AM

Nevertheless, I would defend this man’s right to live his life out in prison, rather than watch the state take his life. His life is not anyone else’s to take. For pro-lifers, this is a no-brainer.

Would you also defend the children, that were born alive, right to life? If so, why didn’t you storm his clinic and rescue the children? Or did you just “let the State handle it”?

Please pick one side.

I am willing to let the State defend the babies and the State take this killers life. I am a coward. I am only willing to vote.

barnone on March 3, 2011 at 10:26 AM

The NT takes frequently of prisons and prisoners. Both Paul and Peter were locked up in “prisons” on occasion. Herod put John the Baptist in prison. Paul tells us to visit the prisoner as well as taking care of widows and orphans. This command to visit the prisoner was not just for company. Prisoners were not fed or taked care of in ancieint Israel. If nobody came to bring food and other essentials then the prisoner starved to death. This doesn’t mean the death penalty is not Biblical – Romans 13 makes clear that it is very Biblical. But there were prisons in ancient Israel.

tommyboy on March 3, 2011 at 8:18 AM

I ought to clarify here.

By ancient Israel, I mean Old Testament Israel, prior to the occupation by Babylon, and then Rome. Things changed considerably after that point.

Prior to that, it was either lashes, or execution, or simply compensation for the crime, i.e. returning stolen goods, with a fourfold fee, et cetera.

KinleyArdal on March 3, 2011 at 10:50 AM

And every time I visit the issue of executions it I creep uncomfortably closer to the conclusion that executions without deterrence are merely venegeance.

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 3:47 PM

In the entire history of the world, no one that has been put to death has ever come back to commit another crime. Therefore, it IS the ultimate deterrant.

44Magnum on March 3, 2011 at 11:01 AM

One other thing to keep in mind here. How tough will it be for the defense to get one person on the jury that will never, ever convict an abortionist due to their belief in a woman’s “right to choose”? Remember, the defense HAS TO TRY to get just such a person on said jury, or they aren’t doing their job.

In PA, I don’t think it will be too tough. There’s a better than even chance this guy walks.

runawayyyy on March 3, 2011 at 12:12 PM

One other thing to keep in mind here. How tough will it be for the defense to get one person on the jury that will never, ever convict an abortionist due to their belief in a woman’s “right to choose”? Remember, the defense HAS TO TRY to get just such a person on said jury, or they aren’t doing their job.

In PA, I don’t think it will be too tough. There’s a better than even chance this guy walks.

runawayyyy on March 3, 2011 at 12:12 PM

Defending this loon for the cause of reproductive rights is like defending Jack the Ripper for the cause of professional knife-throwers.

Dark-Star on March 3, 2011 at 12:53 PM

Because “Vengeance is mine, sayeth the Lord.” Yes, a couple did drop dead for lying to the Apostles, but the Apostles didn’t do the killing.

tcn on March 2, 2011 at 5:01 PM

The Apostles were also not a government, which wields the sword of justice. They had no authority to execute, the government (as dictated by God in the Old Testament) does.

dominigan on March 3, 2011 at 2:06 PM

Paul’s admonition to the Romans unequivocally asserts that it is the state’s responsibility and authority to exact justice upon evildoers. – And this responsibility/authority has been conferred by God himself.

If you would argue that this only authorizes the state to punish but not to kill . . . what do you think a sword is for?

We may disagree with each other about the death penalty, but I think the Anchoress’ argument that this is a “no brainer for pro-lifers” is just not true.

The Ritz on March 2, 2011 at 6:01 PM

ABSOLUTELY! I would also point out what God thinks about those who sacrifice children on the alter of self-interest, and for those who look the other way…

1 The LORD said to Moses, 2 “Say to the Israelites: ‘Any Israelite or any foreigner residing in Israel who sacrifices any of his children to Molek is to be put to death. The members of the community are to stone him. 3 I myself will set my face against him and will cut him off from his people; for by sacrificing his children to Molek, he has defiled my sanctuary and profaned my holy name. 4 If the members of the community close their eyes when that man sacrifices one of his children to Molek and if they fail to put him to death, 5 I myself will set my face against him and his family and will cut them off from their people together with all who follow him in prostituting themselves to Molek. –Leviticus 20:1-5

I shudder for our country to think that God is just…

dominigan on March 3, 2011 at 2:15 PM

Defending this loon for the cause of reproductive rights is like defending Jack the Ripper for the cause of professional knife-throwers.

Dark-Star on March 3, 2011 at 12:53 PM

I agree completely, but that wasn’t the point of my comment. My point was that they WILL defend it, and on that exact basis. I also wanted to be clear on how easy it would be to find that one sympathetic juror, and one is all they’ll need.

runawayyyy on March 3, 2011 at 4:58 PM

dieudonne on March 2, 2011 at 3:47 PM

I’m not Catholic (my nic may have given that away) and I don’t profess to know anything about the Catholic doctrine regarding capital punishment but I did want to respond to something you said regarding the deterrent effect of capital punishment and to point out something that I think is an essential part of the repentance process for the murderer.

Deterrence

The deterrent effect can be examined in terms of both general and specific impact. I don’t know what the studies tell us regarding the behavior of criminals vis-a-vis the death penalty’s impact but I have serious concerns about whether any studies could capture the influence accurately. After all, the subjects have no reason to cooperate and there is also the difficulty of determining where that influence could have been manifested. What I mean is that just because a criminal didn’t commit murder doesn’t mean he was concerned about the death penalty.

With that said I think we should look at the specific deterrent effect. The death penalty has a 100% effectiveness rate at preventing future crime from the individual who has been executed. I am not saying that in a glib way even though it sounds glib.

Innocent Life is Spared

As a supporter of capital punishment and a strong pro life advocate I feel no contradiction in those positions. In the one case we are talking about the preservation of innocent life while in the other we are talking about punishing individuals who have committed acts so reprehensible that they should gladly give up their lives.

One Man’s View of Repentance

A decision like this is inevitably informed by the faith of the person making the decision. For me the sacrifice of the life of is an essential component of the repentance process. My understanding of Christ’s plan of salvation forces me to conclude that a sinner must be willing to restore that which has been damaged as a result of the sin. Thus, if a watch is stolen the repentance process demands that the watch be restored. If vandalism occurs, then compensation is required, etc. In the case of taking a life there is no way to restore the life hence the sacrifice of the murderer’s life is not only correct but is an essential part of the repentance process. Please note I am not talking about absolution in any sense or in anything I have been describing. I am merely talking about the eternal principle of justice and the sinner’s responsibility for doing what is possible in light of the fact that the sin has already been atoned for. However, eligibility for absolution requires action on the part of the penitent. It is essentially the gateway to receiving the gift.

Mormon Doc on March 4, 2011 at 2:32 AM

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