Pew: Support for death penalty at lowest level since early 1970s

posted at 4:41 pm on March 28, 2014 by Allahpundit

Gallup detected this same trend in its own poll on capital punishment last October, but even they didn’t see support drop below 60 percent. Pew does. They’ve got it at 55 percent versus 38 percent opposed. That’s the first time the margin between support and opposition has been less than 20 points since the 1960s. Something’s going on, but what?

The magic-bullet explanation is that it’s a reaction to the steep decline in violent crime in America since the early 1990s. The safer people feel, the less urgent their impulse to punish society’s worst offenders severely. (Tangentially, that may also help explain why support for prison reform is growing within both parties.) But the crime rate can’t explain everything; to see why, read this post from last year flagging a pair of graphs from Gallup showing that trends in how safe people feel haven’t steadily declined over time. They’re down from where they were in the 90s, but they’re actually up from where they were a few years ago — and yet support for the death penalty continues to plummet. There must be more happening here. A clue from Pew in the last three numbers here:

pew

Demographic change must be moving the needle on this issue just as it’s moving the needle on subjects like gay marriage. As the number of minority voters grows as a percentage of the total electorate, support for capital punishment softens. And it’s not just racial demographics that are driving it. Per a Pew poll from 2011, millennials as a group lean a bit further left on this subject than other age groups, just as they lean further left on so many other issues:

p2

A different poll taken in January of this year found something similar happening among Christians specifically. When asked if the government should have the option to execute the worst criminals, 42 percent of Christian baby boomers said yes — but just 32 percent of Christians born between 1980 and 2000 agreed. Whether this is now a fixed star in millennials’ liberal-ish ideology or a simple reaction to the fact that they’ve grown up in a safer America, which could change if/when the crime rate does, is obviously unclear. That’s the evergreen question mark with this group ever since Obama was elected. How many screw-ups by the Democratic Party would it take for them to sour on (some) leftist positions? Or are they dyed-in-the-wool Democrats/left-wing independents for life, having assumed that identity in their formative years? Consider it a subset of the question of whether the U.S. really is irretrievably on a European track, as Europe’s managed to keep its taboo against capital punishment intact despite decades of political change.

One other interesting footnote to the Pew data: The numbers on capital punishment don’t wax and wane as a reaction to the president’s party affiliation. The rap on Democrats when I was a kid was that they were soft on crime, which would lead you to expect a rise in support for the death penalty whenever a Democrat lands in the White House. That’s not what’s happened. Support dropped throughout most of Clinton’s presidency, bounced up slightly after 9/11 before dropping some more during Bush’s terms, and then bounced up slightly after O was elected before continuing to drop. Which makes sense: According to Gallup’s poll last fall, it’s Democrats and independents who have shifted the most towards opposing capital punishment over the past 25 years. It’s a matter of principle, not a purely partisan thing.


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And yet we have state sanctioned baby killing in the womb. Hypocrites…..Aren’t we special..Lets pat ourselves on the backs while thousands are slaughtered and considered inconvenient daily. We are paying for this travesty. Look no further than the White House…

crosshugger on March 28, 2014 at 9:47 PM

And the Nazis were blameless since they were just administering the govt-sanctioned death penalty? They were just following orders?

I can’t believe you would make this statement and avoid answering whether a woman should be stoned for adultery.

iwasbornwithit on March 28, 2014 at 9:44 PM

Of course not, they are the ones with the most blame. They enforced the immoral government. But on the whole, looking at macro the entire society deserved what it got. The only blameless ones are the ones who fought back and most likely died doing so.

astonerii on March 28, 2014 at 9:47 PM

But it thought God was ok with governments putting people to death?

iwasbornwithit on March 28, 2014 at 9:48 PM

I can’t believe you would make this statement and avoid answering whether a woman should be stoned for adultery.
iwasbornwithit on March 28, 2014 at 9:44 PM

???

iwasbornwithit on March 28, 2014 at 9:49 PM

Yes, and he can make a rock so big he can’t lift it….

Murphy9 on March 28, 2014 at 9:50 PM

But it thought God was ok with governments putting people to death?

iwasbornwithit on March 28, 2014 at 9:48 PM

As a form of justice in order to create order in which people and live.
Feel free to keep on talking, I will come back in a day or two and destroy again all your garbage talk. You really should find God. But since you are bound and determined to rather attack him, you can do it alone and when you are not here, I will rebuff your stupidity.

astonerii on March 28, 2014 at 9:51 PM

Of course not, they are the ones with the most blame. They enforced the immoral government. But on the whole, looking at macro the entire society deserved what it got. The only blameless ones are the ones who fought back and most likely died doing so.
astonerii on March 28, 2014 at 9:47 PM

So the kids that didn’t fight back deserved it?

iwasbornwithit on March 28, 2014 at 9:51 PM

???

iwasbornwithit on March 28, 2014 at 9:49 PM

I know, funny isn’t it. I, like Jesus, refuse to answer if we should stone a woman. If it were an actual event, by not answering I am doing precisely what Jesus did.

astonerii on March 28, 2014 at 9:53 PM

As a form of justice in order to create order in which people and live.
Feel free to keep on talking, I will come back in a day or two and destroy again all your garbage talk. You really should find God. But since you are bound and determined to rather attack him, you can do it alone and when you are not here, I will rebuff your stupidity.
astonerii on March 28, 2014 at 9:51 PM

Yeah you “destroyed” me and in the process admitted that you thought the Jews had it coming to them since they didn’t fight back. You blaspheme Jesus to support your pro death penalty position and tell me to “find God.” I am looking, but I know evil when I see it.

iwasbornwithit on March 28, 2014 at 9:56 PM

astonerii on March 28, 2014 at 9:53 PM

But that is the OT law that you said Jesus actually supported? So it’s the biblical law, right?

iwasbornwithit on March 28, 2014 at 10:02 PM

Government is corrupt and inept except when it decides to kill people…

iwasbornwithit on March 28, 2014 at 10:05 PM

and 50 people a year are executed. Pretty much a non issue in overall scheme. RED HERRING.

CW on March 28, 2014 at 11:19 PM

and 50 people a year are executed. Pretty much a non issue in overall scheme. RED HERRING.
CW on March 28, 2014 at 11:19 PM

I have never interacted with you before but I get the sense you are a bit unhinged. Best of luck friend.

iwasbornwithit on March 28, 2014 at 11:23 PM

CW on March 28, 2014 at 6:52 PM
So Christ was pro-DP?

iwasbornwithit on March 28, 2014 at 6:55 PM

Without a doubt, He was. Even if one decides to forget the very important part of His mission (allowing to be crucified) the Son of God was devoutly Jewish in word and deed and would not contradict His Father’s commandment of capital punishment as told in all five books of the Pentateuch.

anuts on March 29, 2014 at 1:07 AM

Not all murders are immoral, so I don’t support the death penalty for everyone, but I think it should be an option for certain people.

Federati on March 28, 2014 at 8:26 PM

In your own words, define the word “murders”, as well as defining/explaining all of its legal repercussions, or lack of same.

Del Dolemonte on March 29, 2014 at 1:27 AM

Not all murders are immoral….
Federati on March 28, 2014 at 8:26 PM

Actually, murder is a legal term that includes the unlawful and unjustifiable taking of innocent life. Therefore, it is absolutely immoral all of the time. No exceptions.

Perhaps you meant the term, “killing”?

anuts on March 29, 2014 at 1:37 AM

The distinction between the words murder and killing is meaningless.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 8:55 AM

But that is the OT law that you said Jesus actually supported? So it’s the biblical law, right?

iwasbornwithit on March 28, 2014 at 10:02 PM

Imma a Christian, I do what Jesus teaches. You are the one that likes that particular passage because you imagine it supports you. But it does not support you in any way at all.
If you read it, understand the law, you understand what was going on and it had nothing to do with the stoning of the woman. The people who brought the woman failed to bring the man, that was their first failure since both the man and woman are to be stoned. The people who brought the woman failed to witness. Jesus did not say she could not be stoned. He said he who is without sin cast the first stone. They all knew they were in the wrong and left.
But Jesus does tell the man that has him executed that he has the Authority to execute him, destroying your idea that Christianity should not support the death penalty.
The death penalty we have now is not perfect, it should be fast to act, made very public.

astonerii on March 29, 2014 at 9:11 AM

Government is corrupt and inept except when it decides to kill people…

iwasbornwithit on March 28, 2014 at 10:05 PM

We have government to defend our rights and no one claims that it is perfect. But the choice is either we have the government or we live in chaos or tyranny. If the government did not offer the people punishment for transgressions against them, then their passions would be the judge of punishment with individuals and mobs carrying out the punishment.

astonerii on March 29, 2014 at 9:14 AM

Demographic change must be moving the needle on this issue just as it’s moving the needle on subjects like gay marriage.

Except it’s moving the needle in the opposite direction on abortion, another form of state-sanctioned capital punishment, wielded against the innocent. Imagine the progressive protests if 3,000 cop killers (who cares about innocent babies if you’re a progressive?)were executed EVERY SINGLE DAY in America.

Yeah. Imagine that.

xNavigator on March 29, 2014 at 9:14 AM

The distinction between the words murder and killing is meaningless.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 8:55 AM

To an idiot with an agenda maybe.

hawkdriver on March 29, 2014 at 9:21 AM

Yeah you “destroyed” me and in the process admitted that you thought the Jews had it coming to them since they didn’t fight back. You blaspheme Jesus to support your pro death penalty position and tell me to “find God.” I am looking, but I know evil when I see it.

iwasbornwithit on March 28, 2014 at 9:56 PM

Show me the blaspheme. Prove it.
As for the Jews, they have to take some blame for the fact that they did not fight back. That they did not flee long before the killing began. Everyone carries responsibility for themselves and for their children. Yeah, it is the politically correct thing to say that the victim is always blameless, but that is a sham that actually leads to more victims.
Inner cities in America today for instance. You know, the ones with large gangs, gun fights and drive by shootings. How do you think those activities are allowed to persist when the actual number of gang members is a smaller part of the population? No one stands up to them. In fact the people of the community actively thwarts the police in apprehending the perpetrators. Do you seriously think that when their kid gets killed that they did not have any culpability in the death?

astonerii on March 29, 2014 at 9:22 AM

And yet we have state sanctioned baby killing in the womb. Hypocrites…..Aren’t we special..Lets pat ourselves on the backs while thousands are slaughtered and considered inconvenient daily. We are paying for this travesty. Look no further than the White House…

crosshugger on March 28, 2014 at 9:47 PM

Well said.

Notwithstanding I don’t believe the poll, look no further than people who have their values and priorities confused. They confuse compassion with their personal dogmas.

When society breaks down, people mature or are somehow personally affected, you will notice a distinct change in those attitudes.

Marcus Traianus on March 29, 2014 at 9:30 AM

The distinction between the words murder and killing is meaningless.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 8:55 AM

Not to a court of law.

Do you support jailing people who kill in self-defense?

nobar on March 29, 2014 at 9:37 AM

Actually, murder is a legal term that includes the unlawful and unjustifiable taking of innocent life. Therefore, it is absolutely immoral all of the time. No exceptions.

Perhaps you meant the term, “killing”?

anuts on March 29, 2014 at 1:37 AM

A German attempting to assassinate Hitler, even as late as in 1945, would be attempting to commit murder, since it was against the law and would be regarded under German law as unjustifiable.

Morality is something we try to put into the law, not something that flows from it.

There are times when men can be required by God to commit legal murder.

However, I strongly favor the death penalty for murder. Societies that fail to recognize its moral necessity are societies that are dying.

This is not a contradiction at all. In fact, it is highly consistent. Legal murder should be a terrible thing to ever contemplate doing, no matter how necessary, no matter if God requires it of you. It is so terrible, you must be willing to die to ever do it.

A morally healthy society will recognize what you had to do, and the players (police, prosecutor, judge, jury, etc) will figure out a way to get you off the hook.

A morally sick society will kill you anyway. That society is ready for the Reaper. You are martyred.

If you are Christian, you should understand this.

fadetogray on March 29, 2014 at 9:38 AM

Not a supporter of Capitol punishment. Never have been.

Bmore on March 29, 2014 at 9:54 AM

I support the death penalty for serial killers, serial rapists, and the like if the evidence is extremely solid. Concerns regarding innocence are the only ones I have.

DisneyFan on March 29, 2014 at 9:54 AM

I’m all for killing scumbags who need killing, but it is clear that there needs to be a precisely delineated tightening of evidentiary standards for the rendering of that sentence. It is clear in the face of all the reversals issued in the last decade or so due to DNA evidence that an adequate set of standards is not in place. This is one time that I believe the Federal government should intervene; if the state chooses to employ that sentence, a nation-wide evidence standard should be met. And the appeals process limited, if the state so desires.

M240H on March 29, 2014 at 9:58 AM

But the choice is either we have the government or we live in chaos or tyranny.

This is debatable. “The Government” covers a broad range of possibilities.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 10:13 AM

On the topic: GOOD, Capital Punishment is not a deterrent, I’m glad support for it is waning. This drop in support does NOT need to equal or mean, “Soft on crime.”. I am a big fan of Life W/o Parole…I would not recommend the Death Penalty for Manson or Bundy or Mumia abu-Jamal. But, I am not foolish enough, nor do I think most opponents of the Death Penalty, are foolish enough to think we can just let these people walk our streets, either.

Off-Topic: I see Another Libertarian is still goofy…. so Another there’s no difference, morally, between the Manson Family killing Sharon Tate or Sharon Tate having a firearm and killing her assailants? Are you really that obtuse or did you just not think your statement thru?

JFKY on March 29, 2014 at 10:15 AM

The distinction between the words murder and killing is meaningless.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 8:55 AM

Not to a court of law.

Do you support jailing people who kill in self-defense?

nobar on March 29, 2014 at 9:37 AM

Basically the argument boils down to just who has the authority to sanction murder. If someone defends themselves from an aggressor, by inborn human instinct we tend to feel the murder was justified. This requires no authority, and courts tend to recognize this cultural determination. (for now, see England though)

On the other hand, when an outside authority sanctions a murder, as in the case of soldiers or police murdering people, we arbitrarily relabel the murder as “killing”. So the difference is authority.

If an authority, say a Nazi government, sanctions a murder, is it then fully sanctified and just? Does any government truly have the “right” to give people permission to murder other people? Should a government have any power that is forbidden to the individual?

There is a serious problem with people who believe themselves Godly and religious, and yet give the power of life and death not to God, but to a government of men.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 10:19 AM

Off-Topic: I see Another Libertarian is still goofy…. so Another there’s no difference, morally, between the Manson Family killing Sharon Tate or Sharon Tate having a firearm and killing her assailants? Are you really that obtuse or did you just not think your statement thru?

JFKY on March 29, 2014 at 10:15 AM

This isn’t a problem for my position. This is a confusion in yours.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 10:20 AM

I wonder if this poll asked the families of victims? Most of those sentenced to death almost NEVER die. They just go year after year appealing their sentences. The penalty of death should be carried out no later than 5 years from conviction.
There are almost no penalties for those in our society who commit crimes. When they are minors and commit awful crimes, their hands are slapped. There are no consequences for actions anymore.
Quote the bible if you think you must but remember the bible also states, “an eye for an eye”!
The death penalty should stand as long as it is not made a joke!
Maybe Obama will just write an executive order outlawing the penalty of death altogether? Or maybe Obama will negate ALL laws? He doesn’t follow the law so why should the rest of us.
To hell with the victims and their families and to hell with those of you who think the penalty should be off the table.

Delsa on March 29, 2014 at 10:21 AM

The distinction between the words murder and killing is meaningless.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 8:55 AM

Not to a court of law.

Do you support jailing people who kill in self-defense?

nobar on March 29, 2014 at 9:37 AM

Is it murder when someone accidentally kills another (ie auto crashes, etc.)?

Mitoch55 on March 29, 2014 at 10:23 AM

No, Another yours is the problem, and it’s not simply semantic… Murder, by definition is an UNJUSTIFIED Killing… hence all murder is killing, but not all killings Murder….

The two concepts, not simply words, are NOT interchangeable. Sorry, you have a limited grasp of the CONCEPTS you advance.

So, Manson Family killing Tates, UNJUSTIFED (Murder)…Tates killing Manson-in the Tate Home-JUSTIFIED (not murder), ergo Murder does NOT = Killing, morally.

I can’t help if your moral lexicon is stunted or limited.

JFKY on March 29, 2014 at 10:24 AM

No, Another yours is the problem, and it’s not simply semantic… Murder, by definition is an UNJUSTIFIED Killing… hence all murder is killing, but not all killings Murder….

Who has the authority to justify murder?

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 10:27 AM

Delta, if killing Manson/Bundy/Hitler would bring back victims OR deter future murder your emotional plea would be OK. Killing them does neither, IMO.

Again, I’m not arguing that Manson/Bundy/Hitler are “victims” or ‘innocent” merely that killing them doesn’t do a lot, costs a lot of money and that we can keep them off the street for the same or less cash with Life W/O Parole.

JFKY on March 29, 2014 at 10:27 AM

Again, I’m not arguing that Manson/Bundy/Hitler are “victims” or ‘innocent” merely that killing them doesn’t do a lot, costs a lot of money and that we can keep them off the street for the same or less cash with Life W/O Parole.

JFKY on March 29, 2014 at 10:27 AM

If you can’t see the difference between self-defense on your own property, in your own home, and people going out and murdering others, you are the monster.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 10:29 AM

You are as bad as Good Lt.? In your childish arguments… NO ONE has the ability to justify MURDER… but then all killing isn’t murder.

You keep wanting to confuse murder/killing…one (murder) is a subset of the other (Killing)… the Venn diagrams don’t correspond on a one-to-one mapping….

JFKY on March 29, 2014 at 10:30 AM

You keep wanting to confuse murder/killing…one (murder) is a subset of the other (Killing)… the Venn diagrams don’t correspond on a one-to-one mapping….

JFKY on March 29, 2014 at 10:30 AM

It seems like you are the one who is confused about murder. You keep trying to put those words you concocted in my mouth, but I don’t accept your strawman.

If you don’t know right from wrong, if you think authority has the ability to give you permission to murder, then you are essentially and irrevocably immoral.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 10:33 AM

Apparently YOU can’t see the difference AL..I can, you keep talking about murder AND killing as homonyms; I’m not… Until you can grasp that MURDER does not equal killing in your rhetoric, you’re lost… these are not simply semantic differences.

Now, Crossfit calls good luck talking about murder being justified… when you mean KILLING can be justified. And justified always involves a group, not simply YOU the monad…I’m sure Manson felt his actions were justified, but the group, US, said no….

Don’t try the INNATE MORALITY/Natural Law thingee, either because I want to see this Natural Law/Natural Morality demonstrated, in a world that has or has had the Yanomami, the Komsomol, the Red Guard & the Jesuits.

JFKY on March 29, 2014 at 10:35 AM

Are you saying that without police and courts you would feel free to go on a killing rampage? Is that all that is stopping you?

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 10:36 AM

Let me clarify this a bit for AL;

Pearl Harbor, 7 Dec 1941, plus everything else Japan did from then on; Mass murder.

Everything the Allies did to Japan in return to make that nation-state cease and desist; Justifiable homicide.

Including Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

That was “going out to commit murder”, by your definition. Clear across the Pacific.

Ditto everything the Allies did to Nazi Germany.

In each case, the “victim” brought it on themselves through their own actions.

That’s the difference.

clear ether

eon

eon on March 29, 2014 at 10:46 AM

Not all murders are immoral, so I don’t support the death penalty for everyone, but I think it should be an option for certain people.

Federati on March 28, 2014 at 8:26 PM

Lazy like water. Not even trying now are you?

Bmore on March 29, 2014 at 11:09 AM

The distinction between the words murder and killing is meaningless.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 8:55 AM

Really?

Bmore on March 29, 2014 at 11:11 AM

Are you saying that without police and courts you would feel free to go on a killing rampage? Is that all that is stopping you?

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 10:36 AM

That and a reason. If there were no police, no courts and no punishment for criminals, then the only remaining choice is to be slaves of the degenerates or to fight them and remove them from society.

Recognize this?

Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

astonerii on March 29, 2014 at 11:13 AM

Pearl Harbor, 7 Dec 1941, plus everything else Japan did from then on; Mass murder.

Everything the Allies did to Japan in return to make that nation-state cease and desist; Justifiable homicide.

Including Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

That was “going out to commit murder”, by your definition. Clear across the Pacific.

Ditto everything the Allies did to Nazi Germany.

In each case, the “victim” brought it on themselves through their own actions.

That’s the difference.

clear ether

eon

eon on March 29, 2014 at 10:46 AM

Did you decide that it was justifiable? Where did you get your opinion that this was justified? (Not saying it wasn’t)

Assigning labels is not the passive exercise that many here are making it out to be. There is more to it than that, and it is going unexamined for a specific reason.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 11:16 AM

“That and a reason. If there were no police, no courts and no punishment for criminals, then the only remaining choice is to be slaves of the degenerates or to fight them and remove them from society.”

astonerii on March 29, 2014 at 11:13 AM

What makes you think you aren’t a slave to degenerates?

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 11:18 AM

What makes you think you aren’t a slave to degenerates?

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 11:18 AM

I am. I already have to give up 25% of my paycheck to them.
But thus far they are not able to terrorize me at my home. It will eventually come to pass that the current government is likely replaced like the old government.

astonerii on March 29, 2014 at 11:22 AM

Also, the way you wrote that it looks like you are saying you WOULD go on a murderous rampage if it weren’t the police Astonerii, lol.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 11:23 AM

Murderous rampage also = killing spree. Murder = kill. Distinction without a difference except in the minds of the immoral.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 11:24 AM

I am. I already have to give up 25% of my paycheck to them.
But thus far they are not able to terrorize me at my home. It will eventually come to pass that the current government is likely replaced like the old government.

astonerii on March 29, 2014 at 11:22 AM

What makes you think they aren’t terrorizing you at home? Do you believe you are free of their coercion because you pay your taxes? Or are you enabling it?

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 11:26 AM

For those who suggest life in prison cost less than carrying out the death penalty I say, screw you!
Tax payer funds for their needs for life. Sex changes, medical, food, cell phones, special meals, legal fees, television,…….
Put them to death no later than 5 years after found guilty. Speed up the court system for those on death row.
They life, the deserve no life.

Delsa on March 29, 2014 at 11:35 AM

Anyone who thinks “life without parole” means what means, is an idiot.

“Life” in many areas equals 25 years.

It’s also been challenged internationally, and domestically, as cruel and unusual punishment. And it’s lost on some fronts.

Just like ghey mirage, the push is on to get rid of the death penalty, then slack life to mean x amount of time.

Demographic change must be moving the needle on this issue just as it’s moving the needle on subjects like gay marriage.

It’s more the type of violence a community experiences. Blacks and latinos have near-zero trust in the judicial system, so no matter what the issue, they side against what they perceive the police/law favors.

Have Pew ask people what they think “life with no parole” means.

budfox on March 29, 2014 at 11:42 AM

The answer to the question on capital punishment is whether you would be willing to be the executioner. I don’t mean in self defense or in a family related crime;, just another person in firing squad, the person who pulls the lever on the electric chair, or doctor admitting a leathal dose?

Tater Salad on March 29, 2014 at 11:58 AM

The answer to the question on capital punishment is whether you would be willing to be the executioner.

Tater Salad on March 29, 2014 at 11:58 AM

No, it is not. There are many jobs I think vitally need be done yet I deeply do not wish to be one of the ones doing it.

fadetogray on March 29, 2014 at 12:10 PM

Desla it’s debatable how costly Capital Punishment is… since most Death Row Inmates are Indigent, the State picks up the tab for both Prosecution & Defense… Counting court time and lawyer fees an execution runs, I’ve read, about 1.5-2.0 Million dollars.

My state budgets ~32,000/prisoner/year…they don’t, at the macro-level, break out Death Row. So, Execution = ~50 years of incarceration. So, yes Life w/o Parole is no more expensive, by some measures.

As to Another Libertarian, s/he simply advances an odd argument that murder=killing, but that may flow from his/her belief in the individual’s inherent right to live/self-ownership. It’s an odd position compounded by his/her arrogance in proclaiming that if one cannot see the difference between Squeaky Fromm & Sharon Tate, then YOU are immoral not Another….

JFKY on March 29, 2014 at 12:35 PM

What makes you think they aren’t terrorizing you at home? Do you believe you are free of their coercion because you pay your taxes? Or are you enabling it?

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 11:26 AM

If they come in my home they will end up dead. Maybe if they show up at your home you pull your pants down and bend over. That is up to you.

astonerii on March 29, 2014 at 12:50 PM

Basically, if you don’t believe in Natural Law, and that government affirms morality it rather than dictates it, you are neither conservative or libertarian. You are a Progressive.

This is the essence of the problem within the Republican Party as it stands. People have been taught to worship at the altar of government, of the State, and to take the edicts of politicians as a moral code. Right and wrong depends on the pronouncements of politicians and not of God. If government, a man made institution, has the power to kill human beings, then everyone has the power to kill human beings and on some level everyone understands this. This is how moral degradation begins; with government approval.

Who do I ask for official permission to kill other humans? What is the name of the man who may sanctify murder at his whim? To look to government as the originator of morality is to place morality at the whim of politicians and the master class that owns them.

This mentality has overrun the GOP, rendering a second Progressive party, and leaving traditional small-government, Christian people without representation. The regular people in this country are completely disenfranchised, and have absolutely zero voice in their own government, due to the size and distance of the central bureaucracy.

When this happens, public discontent rises until some kind of balance is restored.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 12:56 PM

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 12:56 PM

You might have a leg to stand on if you believed in any government. Since you do not, you are not a libertarian but an anarchist. I tend to figure that you chose Libertarian as a nickname because you thought lying to people about your real self would rightly completely destroy any credibility you have.

astonerii on March 29, 2014 at 1:00 PM

If they come in my home they will end up dead. Maybe if they show up at your home you pull your pants down and bend over. That is up to you.

astonerii on March 29, 2014 at 12:50 PM

When the cops show up at your house with a SWAT team, you are going to be outgunned. The real problem has never been disorganized criminals- people tend to handle thugs very well on their own and criminals never last long outside of a system that protects them. (i.e. the one we have that stops people from seeking justice and assigns that to the State)

The real problems is, and always has been, the organized criminals who take over control of the State and use it for their own purposes. The SWAT team is the gang of thugs when that happens, not a random street mugger who is easily dispatched by strong communities and neighborhoods.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 1:03 PM

You might have a leg to stand on if you believed in any government. Since you do not, you are not a libertarian but an anarchist. I tend to figure that you chose Libertarian as a nickname because you thought lying to people about your real self would rightly completely destroy any credibility you have.

astonerii on March 29, 2014 at 1:00 PM

Actually, you have this idea that government always means a jack booted absolutist central State. Anything less than that is “anarchy” to you, including the local self rule over most issues that libertarians endorse.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 1:04 PM

Delta, if killing Manson/Bundy/Hitler would bring back victims OR deter future murder your emotional plea would be OK. Killing them does neither, IMO.

Again, I’m not arguing that Manson/Bundy/Hitler are “victims” or ‘innocent” merely that killing them doesn’t do a lot, costs a lot of money and that we can keep them off the street for the same or less cash with Life W/O Parole.

JFKY on March 29, 2014 at 10:27 AM

Charles Manson got a 40 year mulligan when 5 men in black robes ruled the death penalty unconstitutional… we’ve been paying for his stay in San Quentin ever since… not worth the ridiculous amount of money spent when he should have been breathing cyanide in the early 1970′s…

Khun Joe on March 29, 2014 at 1:10 PM

When the cops show up at your house with a SWAT team, you are going to be outgunned. The real problem has never been disorganized criminals- people tend to handle thugs very well on their own and criminals never last long outside of a system that protects them. (i.e. the one we have that stops people from seeking justice and assigns that to the State)

The real problems is, and always has been, the organized criminals who take over control of the State and use it for their own purposes. The SWAT team is the gang of thugs when that happens, not a random street mugger who is easily dispatched by strong communities and neighborhoods.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 1:03 PM

I got no problem getting rid of the police level state. I never supported the post 9/11 ramp up. That will be the end of me allowing you to hijack the thread.
But that is not what this thread is about. It is about how do we deal with the most reprehensible members of our society. For them the right answer is that we execute them. If the government will not do it, then you will end up with citizens taking the law into their own hands and dishing out vigilante justice which has a far higher risk of having innocent people killed than the government method.
Can there be improvements? Sure there can.

First things first, prosecutors should be liable for false charges up to and including attempted murder if they try a person for a capital crime they know is not guilty or if they withhold evidence that would benefit the accused. Police should similarly be held to account for their actions, if they plant evidence, hide evidence or give false testimony then they should face similar punishments that civilians would face for the same crimes.

astonerii on March 29, 2014 at 1:12 PM

Actually, you have this idea that government always means a jack booted absolutist central State. Anything less than that is “anarchy” to you, including the local self rule over most issues that libertarians endorse.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 1:04 PM

You obviously do not know what I believe.

astonerii on March 29, 2014 at 1:14 PM

The distinction between the words murder and killing is meaningless.

Another Libertarian on March 29, 2014 at 8:55 AM

Really?

Bmore on March 29, 2014 at 11:11 AM

Explains every other confession that reprobate makes.

Murphy9 on March 29, 2014 at 2:46 PM

*WOW* Natural Law, I take it you’re Catholic… they believe in Natural Law, too… oh is yours different? We’ll leave it at that for the moment, with this add-on.

IF, your Natural Law isn’t Catholic, then here’s a news flash… yours ISN’T “Natural Law.” (Theirs isn’t either)

See a Natural Law is that current flows from the Positive to the Negative… that Gravity works on the radius Squared rule… that two atoms, in identical situations behave identically, not that a libertarian atom behaves differently than a Progressive one from a Conservative one.

JFKY on March 29, 2014 at 2:57 PM

Khun Joe, in my state Manson has to live another 10 years before killing him saves money….

JFKY on March 29, 2014 at 3:11 PM

Murphy9 on March 29, 2014 at 2:46 PM

Its comments comes across as leftist.

Bmore on March 29, 2014 at 3:24 PM

Oh & lastly, Mr. “Life is a Joke”… hence the add-on… Life WITHOUT POSSIBILITY OF PAROLE, most of us understand “life” is not Life….. nor should it necessarily be. 25-Life is a long sentence, one that ought to be reserved for some fairly heinous crime, murder by-and-large not being one of those heinous crimes. Most murders are committed impaired after an argument & it’s the ONLY MURDER (not the only crime) the defendant will ever commit. So, in-and-of itself murder doesn’t merit 25-Life.

25-Life child pornographers distributors, persistent felons…..

Life w/o Parole… my state has a guy that has killed 6 people, in 3 different episodes. Dood is a Stone Killer, not a victim not a poor lost lamb… he needs to be in prison for the rest of his life, hence W/o parole. I doubt he’s ever going to executed, so let’s just commute the sentence to Life w/o….

JFKY on March 29, 2014 at 3:24 PM

Sorry. Minor tweak.

Its comments come across as leftist.

Bmore on March 29, 2014 at 3:24 PM

As Dire would say. Fixed!…:)

Bmore on March 29, 2014 at 3:25 PM

fadetogray on March 29, 2014 at 9:38 AM

Good points. All of it.

anuts on March 29, 2014 at 4:01 PM

Hang’em high. Actually I would reserve death penalty for the truly unremorseful or particularly gruesome crimes. No judicial reviews or decade long court battles. The Charles mansons or Jeffrey dalmer ted bundys of the world. Quick and be gone and forgotten

jaywemm on March 29, 2014 at 9:43 PM

2267 The traditional teaching of the Church does not exclude, presupposing full ascertainment of the identity and responsibility of the offender, recourse to the death penalty, when this is the only practicable way to defend the lives of human beings effectively against the aggressor.
“If, instead, bloodless means are sufficient to defend against the aggressor and to protect the safety of persons, public authority should limit itself to such means, because they better correspond to the concrete conditions of the common good and are more in conformity to the dignity of the human person.
“Today, in fact, given the means at the State’s disposal to effectively repress crime by rendering inoffensive the one who has committed it, without depriving him definitively of the possibility of redeeming himself, cases of absolute necessity for suppression of the offender ‘today … are very rare, if not practically non-existent.’[John Paul II, Evangelium vitae 56.]

The above is in the section of the Catechism of the Catholic Church describing the application of the Fifth Commandment to daily life. In that section of the Catechism is also an explanation of the Church’s interpretation of Scripture on the matter of abortion.

Note that the Catholic, by this teaching, is obligated to oppose the death penalty as he or she is obligated to oppose abortion. Such a position is often called, in Catholic circles, the Seamless Garb — respect for a life given by God in all of its manifestations.

Part and parcel of the above teaching is the realization that a policeman may have to kill an aggressor in order to prevent that aggressor from further harming innocent people, but that once the aggressor has been subdued, no further recourse to killing is needed. Indeed, the death penalty may be likened to shooting fish in a barrel — it isn’t very sporting and there is no real justice involved.

unclesmrgol on March 29, 2014 at 9:50 PM

The above is in the section of the Catechism of the Catholic Church describing the application of the Fifth Commandment to daily life. In that section of the Catechism is also an explanation of the Church’s interpretation of Scripture on the matter of abortion.

Note that the Catholic, by this teaching, is obligated to oppose the death penalty as he or she is obligated to oppose abortion. Such a position is often called, in Catholic circles, the Seamless Garb — respect for a life given by God in all of its manifestations.

Part and parcel of the above teaching is the realization that a policeman may have to kill an aggressor in order to prevent that aggressor from further harming innocent people, but that once the aggressor has been subdued, no further recourse to killing is needed. Indeed, the death penalty may be likened to shooting fish in a barrel — it isn’t very sporting and there is no real justice involved.

unclesmrgol on March 29, 2014 at 9:50 PM

That is insane. God established the death penalty. Who gives a rip what any stupid pope said.

Murphy9 on March 30, 2014 at 1:07 AM

Murphy9, “God” also established that shellfish were verboten…. and that a woman menstruating was “unclean.”. Our interpretations of God’s Plan & Will evolved a bit wouldn’t you say?

JFKY on March 30, 2014 at 8:26 AM

If you think opposition to the worship of government is “Leftist”, you should probably check your arm for a swastika.

I don’t think many of the posters on this blog come within a stone’s throw of true conservative. They have been duped and deluded to the point that anything their beloved government does is “conservative” to them, because they put their team before right and wrong.

They accept any government edict as just, based on the concept of raw power. They have no morality of their own, not knowing the difference between right and wrong without a figurehead to guide them.

They worship at the altar of power, and make a mockery of morality. These Pharisees proclaim themselves to be the arbiter of all that is just, while supporting the most heinous atrocities committed against their fellow humans in the name of the State.

These Big Government “Social Conservatives” are simply Progressives who cheer on any use of force against human beings. Real social conservatives do not behave this way. There is a big difference between real religious people and internet “religious people”.

Another Libertarian on March 30, 2014 at 9:40 AM

I see you are a “believer”… you must be, you have just sacrificed a Giant Straw man, in your last posting…. They made two movies about that, the “Wicker/Straw man?”. The first one was better with the Equalizer/Breaker Morant, you’re more the Nicolas Cage version.

You want to talk about that “Natural Law” thing that guides you so that murder=killing…

Or did you just figure you’d get to stride at the end & fling your poo?

JFKY on March 30, 2014 at 11:00 AM

More liberals need to be mugged.

TimBuk3 on March 30, 2014 at 11:59 AM

Another Libertarian on March 30, 2014 at 9:40 AM

The claim that support for the death penalty is a pro-big government and anti-conservative position is idiotic on its face. If government was not already ridiculously huge and rapacious and screwing up even the most basic concept of justice, it would take vastly more government to incarcerate convicted murderers for life than it would to kill them.

Every real conservative since the founding of the Republic thinks you’re nuts.

fadetogray on March 30, 2014 at 2:48 PM

Another Libertarian on March 30, 2014 at 9:40 AM

Things are not so, just because you write it. Everything you’ve ever posted, is purely your opinion.

hawkdriver on March 30, 2014 at 4:00 PM

Executing the guilty is arguably just, but there have now been too many DNA-based reversals of death-penalty verdicts to make it possible to be comfortable with executions.

PersonFromPorlock on March 30, 2014 at 5:42 PM

Executing the guilty is arguably just, but there have now been too many DNA-based reversals of death-penalty verdicts to make it possible to be comfortable with executions.

PersonFromPorlock on March 30, 2014 at 5:42 PM

You have it backwards. Now we have DNA testing. It is now much harder to convict the innocent of murder than it was before.

fadetogray on March 30, 2014 at 11:54 PM

No one is allowed to die any longer arising from a Biblical injunction of an eye for an eye.

First you must be re-educated and rehabilitated, and only then can you be liquidated.

(1984 (novel)and Mao after the 1949 takeover)

technopeasant on March 31, 2014 at 7:23 AM

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