Author Topic: Guilty Until Proven Innocent  (Read 4344 times)

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Offline 73109

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #105 on: December 02, 2016, 11:32:05 PM »
It's whether they did it or not! Duh!


Seriously though, I have no idea how this thread has made it to three pages.

Offline Stadler

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #106 on: December 06, 2016, 10:35:21 AM »
I completely understand and agree with the point you guys are making. Those rights are there for a reason and the system protects against the emotion that I'm clearly giving in to.

My larger point is basically what the title of the thread is. People that do these type of horrific crimes and rape and brutalize infants should have to prove to a jury of their peers why they shouldn't be hung the next day. They get thier trial and a chance. They are guilty when that trial starts, because they are guilty.

Alright.  I have a thought experiment.  Fair warning: I'm going to do some verbal gymnastics. 

I say we should have two types of trials.

If someone is accused of a crime, we put them on trial to determine whether they are guilty.  If there is insufficient evidence to establish their guilt, they are presumed innocent.  We'll call this trial A.

If someone is guilty of a crime, we put them on trial to determine whether or not they are innocent.  If there is insufficient evidence to establish their innocence, they are presumed guilty.  We'll call this trial B.

Here's the dilemma: How do we decide which trial a person should get?

We decide by the system we have in place right now. 

Offline Jaffa

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #107 on: December 06, 2016, 05:58:12 PM »
I agree.  My question was directed at gmiller, who is questioning the system we have in place. 
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Offline Prog Snob

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #108 on: December 06, 2016, 08:11:41 PM »
I completely understand and agree with the point you guys are making. Those rights are there for a reason and the system protects against the emotion that I'm clearly giving in to.

My larger point is basically what the title of the thread is. People that do these type of horrific crimes and rape and brutalize infants should have to prove to a jury of their peers why they shouldn't be hung the next day. They get thier trial and a chance. They are guilty when that trial starts, because they are guilty.

I think that unless someone is admitting guilt, they deserve a fair trial. In the end, the punishment should be harsh, not some slap on the wrist. Hangings would certainly send a strong message. Vlad the Impaler had a good thing going, except he would do it to people just for looking at him the wrong way. Maybe a guillotine. But instead of taking the head off right away, maybe do his hands and feet first, then the torso, watch the entrails come flowing out. I think he'd be dead by then.

Offline Adami

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #109 on: December 06, 2016, 08:14:21 PM »
I completely understand and agree with the point you guys are making. Those rights are there for a reason and the system protects against the emotion that I'm clearly giving in to.

My larger point is basically what the title of the thread is. People that do these type of horrific crimes and rape and brutalize infants should have to prove to a jury of their peers why they shouldn't be hung the next day. They get thier trial and a chance. They are guilty when that trial starts, because they are guilty.

I think that unless someone is admitting guilt, they deserve a fair trial. In the end, the punishment should be harsh, not some slap on the wrist. Hangings would certainly send a strong message. Vlad the Impaler had a good thing going, except he would do it to people just for looking at him the wrong way. Maybe a guillotine. But instead of taking the head off right away, maybe do his hands and feet first, then the torso, watch the entrails come flowing out. I think he'd be dead by then.

The only people that would benefit are the people who really love the idea of people who do bad things suffering immensely.

The people who DO these bad things, aren't currently doing them with the mindset of "Well...this is totally worth 20-life in prison!" they're thinking they either won't get caught, or they don't consider the consequences at all. Going Vlad the Impaler on people won't change that whatsoever. If anything, it'll make everyone else think that people deserve to be horribly tortured and brutally murdered if they do something we don't approve of.
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Offline bosk1

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #110 on: December 06, 2016, 08:24:50 PM »
I completely understand and agree with the point you guys are making. Those rights are there for a reason and the system protects against the emotion that I'm clearly giving in to.

My larger point is basically what the title of the thread is. People that do these type of horrific crimes and rape and brutalize infants should have to prove to a jury of their peers why they shouldn't be hung the next day. They get thier trial and a chance. They are guilty when that trial starts, because they are guilty.

I think that unless someone is admitting guilt, they deserve a fair trial. In the end, the punishment should be harsh, not some slap on the wrist. Hangings would certainly send a strong message. Vlad the Impaler had a good thing going, except he would do it to people just for looking at him the wrong way. Maybe a guillotine. But instead of taking the head off right away, maybe do his hands and feet first, then the torso, watch the entrails come flowing out. I think he'd be dead by then.

The only people that would benefit are the people who really love the idea of people who do bad things suffering immensely.

The people who DO these bad things, aren't currently doing them with the mindset of "Well...this is totally worth 20-life in prison!" they're thinking they either won't get caught, or they don't consider the consequences at all. Going Vlad the Impaler on people won't change that whatsoever. If anything, it'll make everyone else think that people deserve to be horribly tortured and brutally murdered if they do something we don't approve of.

A question occurs to me.  And don't get me wrong--I'm not advocating for what PS proposed.  I'm just curious what your thoughts are on this:  Do you believe there is a likelihood that some of those who don't consider the consequences at all might be more inclined to consider the consequences if those consequences were swift and severe?
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Offline Adami

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #111 on: December 06, 2016, 08:27:49 PM »
I guess it depends on the crime.

Would a pedophile be less likely? Probably not. That's just how they're wired.

Would SOME people be less likely? Of course. I'm just not convinced it would be a number large enough to justify blood thirsty vengeance as justice.

The only way it would be truly effective (and I am soooo not advocating this) is just to go all draconian and boil people alive for stealing some donuts.

But then you can look at countries in the middle east who actually do these types of things. They're either usually in a state of revolution or are dictatorships.  I'm not sure a happy medium exists. My disapproval of capital punishment aside.
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Offline bosk1

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #112 on: December 06, 2016, 08:30:01 PM »
Yeah, I wonder why that is.  I mean, why there is no "happy medium."  Interesting.  Or maybe I'm just strange to think so.  :lol
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Offline Prog Snob

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #113 on: December 06, 2016, 08:35:42 PM »
I guess it depends on the crime.

Would a pedophile be less likely? Probably not. That's just how they're wired.

Would SOME people be less likely? Of course. I'm just not convinced it would be a number large enough to justify blood thirsty vengeance as justice.

The only way it would be truly effective (and I am soooo not advocating this) is just to go all draconian and boil people alive for stealing some donuts.

But then you can look at countries in the middle east who actually do these types of things. They're either usually in a state of revolution or are dictatorships.  I'm not sure a happy medium exists. My disapproval of capital punishment aside.

Well, I don't think stealing donuts deserves that kind of punishment. That does seem like something more fitting for someone who rapes children. Can I stick a stethoscope in the water as the person gets thrown in so I can hear said person scream?  :xbones

Offline El Barto

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #114 on: December 06, 2016, 11:01:04 PM »
I guess it depends on the crime.

Would a pedophile be less likely? Probably not. That's just how they're wired.

Would SOME people be less likely? Of course. I'm just not convinced it would be a number large enough to justify blood thirsty vengeance as justice.

The only way it would be truly effective (and I am soooo not advocating this) is just to go all draconian and boil people alive for stealing some donuts.

But then you can look at countries in the middle east who actually do these types of things. They're either usually in a state of revolution or are dictatorships.  I'm not sure a happy medium exists. My disapproval of capital punishment aside.
And yet the headsman in Saudi Arabia still has business. People still get their hands cut off. People still smuggle drugs in Thailand. People still commit capital crimes in China. Like you said, people don't weigh the various outcomes should they be caught.
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Offline gmillerdrake

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #115 on: December 07, 2016, 08:28:18 AM »
Alright.  I have a thought experiment.  Fair warning: I'm going to do some verbal gymnastics. 

I say we should have two types of trials.

If someone is accused of a crime, we put them on trial to determine whether they are guilty.  If there is insufficient evidence to establish their guilt, they are presumed innocent.  We'll call this trial A.

If someone is guilty of a crime, we put them on trial to determine whether or not they are innocent.  If there is insufficient evidence to establish their innocence, they are presumed guilty.  We'll call this trial B.

Here's the dilemma: How do we decide which trial a person should get?

The root of why I raise the question is that simply, the punishment for flat out cold blooded first degree murder and horrific crimes perpetrated against defenseless infants and children is not harsh enough. Capitol punishment is not effective when it takes 30 friggin' years to administer it. I understand the need to make sure an innocent person isn't being killed....but the same technology and scientific breakthroughs that are freeing some of these people who were wrongfully convicted back in the day is the same processes that will make the convictions to come that much more concrete.

You get convicted and sentenced to die....you should get an immediate appeal to a judge to review....after that has happened and you're still found guilty the sentence is administered immediately.

This light footed, easy road crap these violent criminals who cannot be rehabilitated is an utter travesty of justice and is nothing more than taking advantage of a system that increasingly looks like it's set up to benefit the guilty.
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Offline Chino

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #116 on: December 07, 2016, 08:42:32 AM »
Alright.  I have a thought experiment.  Fair warning: I'm going to do some verbal gymnastics. 

I say we should have two types of trials.

If someone is accused of a crime, we put them on trial to determine whether they are guilty.  If there is insufficient evidence to establish their guilt, they are presumed innocent.  We'll call this trial A.

If someone is guilty of a crime, we put them on trial to determine whether or not they are innocent.  If there is insufficient evidence to establish their innocence, they are presumed guilty.  We'll call this trial B.

Here's the dilemma: How do we decide which trial a person should get?

The root of why I raise the question is that simply, the punishment for flat out cold blooded first degree murder and horrific crimes perpetrated against defenseless infants and children is not harsh enough. Capitol punishment is not effective when it takes 30 friggin' years to administer it.

Capital punishment doesn't work as a deterrent, period. I don't think it has anything to do with the time. People with a brain that's fucked up enough to kill or rape an infant are not going to be stopped with a more efficient method of capital punishment. 

Offline gmillerdrake

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #117 on: December 07, 2016, 08:50:15 AM »
Alright.  I have a thought experiment.  Fair warning: I'm going to do some verbal gymnastics. 

I say we should have two types of trials.

If someone is accused of a crime, we put them on trial to determine whether they are guilty.  If there is insufficient evidence to establish their guilt, they are presumed innocent.  We'll call this trial A.

If someone is guilty of a crime, we put them on trial to determine whether or not they are innocent.  If there is insufficient evidence to establish their innocence, they are presumed guilty.  We'll call this trial B.

Here's the dilemma: How do we decide which trial a person should get?

The root of why I raise the question is that simply, the punishment for flat out cold blooded first degree murder and horrific crimes perpetrated against defenseless infants and children is not harsh enough. Capitol punishment is not effective when it takes 30 friggin' years to administer it.

Capital punishment doesn't work as a deterrent, period. I don't think it has anything to do with the time. People with a brain that's fucked up enough to kill or rape an infant are not going to be stopped with a more efficient method of capital punishment.

Fair enough....but it's still no reason not to execute them immediately rather than wait 30 years and waste the $$ and resources on keeping POS alive and breathing.
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Offline cramx3

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #118 on: December 07, 2016, 09:52:30 AM »
Alright.  I have a thought experiment.  Fair warning: I'm going to do some verbal gymnastics. 

I say we should have two types of trials.

If someone is accused of a crime, we put them on trial to determine whether they are guilty.  If there is insufficient evidence to establish their guilt, they are presumed innocent.  We'll call this trial A.

If someone is guilty of a crime, we put them on trial to determine whether or not they are innocent.  If there is insufficient evidence to establish their innocence, they are presumed guilty.  We'll call this trial B.

Here's the dilemma: How do we decide which trial a person should get?

The root of why I raise the question is that simply, the punishment for flat out cold blooded first degree murder and horrific crimes perpetrated against defenseless infants and children is not harsh enough. Capitol punishment is not effective when it takes 30 friggin' years to administer it.

Capital punishment doesn't work as a deterrent, period. I don't think it has anything to do with the time. People with a brain that's fucked up enough to kill or rape an infant are not going to be stopped with a more efficient method of capital punishment.

I never really viewed it as a deterrent.  Like Barto stated, even countries with sever crime penalties still have crime.   I'm more in favor of capitol punishment because I don't see the point in keeping people alive who will never leave prison.  If you have life with no parole, what's the point of that life?  Pretty brutal, I know, but to get life without parole, you most likely are a very brutal person.

Offline Stadler

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #119 on: December 07, 2016, 02:34:09 PM »
I don't think Capital Punishment deters in the sense of "Hey, hmm, I could whack this guy, but I might get the chair... better not!".    This pisses people off when I say this, but I think our self-control is less than we give it credit for.  There are certain impulses - someone mentioned child molesters; I think people who get off on children are no different in a biological urge stand point than a guy that likes to be tied up, or likes big asses, or long thin cocks.  It's a desire, albeit an aberrant one.  The difference there is that the child molestation harms someone else (not that the others couldn't, but... consent, etc.).   

But it has some place; to the extent that any of those urges are biological, perhaps it has a selection aspect to it, though that is probably a random effect.   Certainly it has a PROTECTION aspect; if in fact that sociopath CANNOT control his/her homicidal urges, killing them is the ultimate way of making sure no one else is harmed (including other inmates).   And of course, do not forget the retribution aspect (it's not really justice in that sense). 

Offline El Barto

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #120 on: December 07, 2016, 03:40:32 PM »
I don't think Capital Punishment deters in the sense of "Hey, hmm, I could whack this guy, but I might get the chair... better not!".    This pisses people off when I say this, but I think our self-control is less than we give it credit for.  There are certain impulses - someone mentioned child molesters; I think people who get off on children are no different in a biological urge stand point than a guy that likes to be tied up, or likes big asses, or long thin cocks.  It's a desire, albeit an aberrant one.  The difference there is that the child molestation harms someone else (not that the others couldn't, but... consent, etc.).   

But it has some place; to the extent that any of those urges are biological, perhaps it has a selection aspect to it, though that is probably a random effect.   Certainly it has a PROTECTION aspect; if in fact that sociopath CANNOT control his/her homicidal urges, killing them is the ultimate way of making sure no one else is harmed (including other inmates).   And of course, do not forget the retribution aspect (it's not really justice in that sense).
Was there a sense where it does serve as a deterrent? You were pretty specific about the sense that it doesn't work.
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Offline Jaffa

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #121 on: December 07, 2016, 07:21:26 PM »
You get convicted and sentenced to die....you should get an immediate appeal to a judge to review....after that has happened and you're still found guilty the sentence is administered immediately.

But how do you get convicted?  What is the process that leads from accusation to conviction before that final appeal?
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Offline Prog Snob

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #122 on: December 07, 2016, 08:15:27 PM »
I don't think Capital Punishment deters in the sense of "Hey, hmm, I could whack this guy, but I might get the chair... better not!".    This pisses people off when I say this, but I think our self-control is less than we give it credit for.  There are certain impulses - someone mentioned child molesters; I think people who get off on children are no different in a biological urge stand point than a guy that likes to be tied up, or likes big asses, or long thin cocks.  It's a desire, albeit an aberrant one.  The difference there is that the child molestation harms someone else (not that the others couldn't, but... consent, etc.).   

But it has some place; to the extent that any of those urges are biological, perhaps it has a selection aspect to it, though that is probably a random effect.   Certainly it has a PROTECTION aspect; if in fact that sociopath CANNOT control his/her homicidal urges, killing them is the ultimate way of making sure no one else is harmed (including other inmates).   And of course, do not forget the retribution aspect (it's not really justice in that sense).
Was there a sense where it does serve as a deterrent? You were pretty specific about the sense that it doesn't work.

I was criticized about this once before but I still stand firm in my point of view.

For many people, before it even becomes a matter of the legal repercussions, they look at it from an ethical and moral standpoint above all else. The legal deterrent doesn't even come into play. For me though, I think it's more a matter of the repercussions. I don't see it as being completely unethical and immoral to kill. There are exceptions to the rule.

Offline Stadler

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #123 on: December 08, 2016, 11:00:59 AM »
I don't think Capital Punishment deters in the sense of "Hey, hmm, I could whack this guy, but I might get the chair... better not!".    This pisses people off when I say this, but I think our self-control is less than we give it credit for.  There are certain impulses - someone mentioned child molesters; I think people who get off on children are no different in a biological urge stand point than a guy that likes to be tied up, or likes big asses, or long thin cocks.  It's a desire, albeit an aberrant one.  The difference there is that the child molestation harms someone else (not that the others couldn't, but... consent, etc.).   

But it has some place; to the extent that any of those urges are biological, perhaps it has a selection aspect to it, though that is probably a random effect.   Certainly it has a PROTECTION aspect; if in fact that sociopath CANNOT control his/her homicidal urges, killing them is the ultimate way of making sure no one else is harmed (including other inmates).   And of course, do not forget the retribution aspect (it's not really justice in that sense).
Was there a sense where it does serve as a deterrent? You were pretty specific about the sense that it doesn't work.

I don't have an answer for you, boss.  I don't know that there IS a sense where it's a deterrent.  I think you'd be hard pressed to ask the average person if their state even has the death penalty, in most cases.

Offline cramx3

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #124 on: December 08, 2016, 12:15:11 PM »
I don't think Capital Punishment deters in the sense of "Hey, hmm, I could whack this guy, but I might get the chair... better not!".    This pisses people off when I say this, but I think our self-control is less than we give it credit for.  There are certain impulses - someone mentioned child molesters; I think people who get off on children are no different in a biological urge stand point than a guy that likes to be tied up, or likes big asses, or long thin cocks.  It's a desire, albeit an aberrant one.  The difference there is that the child molestation harms someone else (not that the others couldn't, but... consent, etc.).   

But it has some place; to the extent that any of those urges are biological, perhaps it has a selection aspect to it, though that is probably a random effect.   Certainly it has a PROTECTION aspect; if in fact that sociopath CANNOT control his/her homicidal urges, killing them is the ultimate way of making sure no one else is harmed (including other inmates).   And of course, do not forget the retribution aspect (it's not really justice in that sense).
Was there a sense where it does serve as a deterrent? You were pretty specific about the sense that it doesn't work.

I don't have an answer for you, boss.  I don't know that there IS a sense where it's a deterrent.  I think you'd be hard pressed to ask the average person if their state even has the death penalty, in most cases.

Without checking, I don't know if NJ does or doesn't honestly, I'm going to lean towards no since I can't ever recall hearing of anyone getting the death penalty.  I just looked up however, there were 19 executions this year in the US.  I actually thought the number would be less.

http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org/execution-list-2016

Also interesting to see that two people were labelled as "volunteer - an inmate who waived ordinary appeals that remained at the time of his or her execution"

I also did look up after I typed this to find that NJ abolished the death penalty in 2007.

Offline El Barto

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #125 on: December 08, 2016, 01:15:32 PM »
I actually watched a documentary last night on the alleged "most dangerous man on death row." Feller in Nevada that's serving 4 life sentences, 1 death sentence and a dozen or so other terms. Not the brightest chap in the world, but thoughtful, sincere and well-spoken. It actually covered a whole lot of what we're talking about here. He's not a nice man. He's committed quite a few crimes. While he didn't strike me as a sociopath, he's pretty good at rationalizing violence. He's refreshingly honest about owning up to his crimes and not trying to mitigate them, going so far as to prevent his family from describing the trials of his childhood. As he put it, "lots of people have it just as bad."

Yet there were equally compelling reasons not to execute him. His only capital offense was killing a cellmate in what he claimed was self defense, with no evidence to the contrary. He acted as his own co-council and correctly stated that for any other person it would have been a lesser manslaughter charge. Like some of us have been saying, the process matters. In his case he's just generally been a genuine pain in the ass. He's escaped a few times, participated in two prison hostage takings, and returned to committing crimes any time he's been released. Yet none of these offenses warrants a death sentence.

He's a perfect example of somebody to whom punishment is not a deterrence. Almost to a fault. From his perspective trying to weasel out of punishment by playing for sympathy would be chickenshit. Though, not trying to escape it would be similarly weak. Simply placement of principles.

While he refuses to let it be a factor in his sentencing, he's a damn good example of someone who was turned bad by the state. After getting into a fight (and losing badly) with his alcoholic, violent father around 13 or so, his mom sent him to a state run camp for at-risk youths. Naturally it was run by physically abusive pedophiles. Since then he developed a severe resentment towards authority; go figure. From there it was all down hill.

And the reason he's still awaiting execution after nearly 40 years is perhaps his most compelling argument. The State of Nevada has been so gung-ho to try and secure death sentences that it consistently ignores the rules. Process matters. He's been retried twice and is still winning appeals. In the most recent example (which was 10 years ago) they wheeled him into the courtroom Hannibal Lector style, insisting that it was due to unnamed security threats and in no way prejudicial. 

I'm not going into this as an argument against capital punishment. Nor am I trying to suggest that he's a good guy; he's not. Just bringing it up as an example of how gray many of these situations actually are.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sA6zFFKGFMU
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Offline cramx3

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #126 on: December 08, 2016, 01:55:13 PM »
Agree with the grayness on his and probably a large amount of death row inmates.  It's very rare that something is so cut and clear that gmiller's thought process of throwing the book at the person makes sense.  The process matters like you say. 

In his case he's just generally been a genuine pain in the ass. He's escaped a few times, participated in two prison hostage takings, and returned to committing crimes any time he's been released. Yet none of these offenses warrants a death sentence.

However, I know this was talked about somewhere else on this forum, but at what point does that summation of smaller offenses equal a death sentence?

Also, while he had a terrible childhood that no doubt played a role in shaping his terrible life, I can't find that as an excuse to not execute him (assuming his crimes warranted that).  I'm not sure any of his back story should have any weight on his sentence (I don't think you were implying this, just stating) as unfortunate as that may be.

Offline Stadler

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #127 on: December 08, 2016, 02:04:31 PM »
Agree with the grayness on his and probably a large amount of death row inmates.  It's very rare that something is so cut and clear that gmiller's thought process of throwing the book at the person makes sense.  The process matters like you say. 

In his case he's just generally been a genuine pain in the ass. He's escaped a few times, participated in two prison hostage takings, and returned to committing crimes any time he's been released. Yet none of these offenses warrants a death sentence.

However, I know this was talked about somewhere else on this forum, but at what point does that summation of smaller offenses equal a death sentence?

Also, while he had a terrible childhood that no doubt played a role in shaping his terrible life, I can't find that as an excuse to not execute him (assuming his crimes warranted that).  I'm not sure any of his back story should have any weight on his sentence (I don't think you were implying this, just stating) as unfortunate as that may be.

AMAZING question, and one of the reasons I've started moving away from the death penalty as a viable option.  I would like to think about this a little bit, but my gut says that there is no math for that.  For the summation of lesser offenses into the death penalty. 

Offline El Barto

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #128 on: December 08, 2016, 02:09:38 PM »
However, I know this was talked about somewhere else on this forum, but at what point does that summation of smaller offenses equal a death sentence?
At no point. You don't off somebody for being a pain in the ass. At that point you can't even latch onto the Pentateuch to rationalize your annoyance, which is essentially all it is.

Quote
Also, while he had a terrible childhood that no doubt played a role in shaping his terrible life, I can't find that as an excuse to not execute him (assuming his crimes warranted that).  I'm not sure any of his back story should have any weight on his sentence (I don't think you were implying this, just stating) as unfortunate as that may be.
Well, as somebody who denies the existence of free will, I disagree. Nobody asks for the sum-total of their existence.

edit: Sorry Stadler, I'm answering it for you.
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Offline cramx3

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #129 on: December 08, 2016, 02:18:37 PM »
However, I know this was talked about somewhere else on this forum, but at what point does that summation of smaller offenses equal a death sentence?
At no point. You don't off somebody for being a pain in the ass. At that point you can't even latch onto the Pentateuch to rationalize your annoyance, which is essentially all it is.

Quote
Also, while he had a terrible childhood that no doubt played a role in shaping his terrible life, I can't find that as an excuse to not execute him (assuming his crimes warranted that).  I'm not sure any of his back story should have any weight on his sentence (I don't think you were implying this, just stating) as unfortunate as that may be.
Well, as somebody who denies the existence of free will, I disagree. Nobody asks for the sum-total of their existence.

edit: Sorry Stadler, I'm answering it for you.

If someone is a disturbance to society, they shouldn't get unlimited attempts to try and assimilate.  Whether you say they should die or just be locked up is a fine debate, but to think the summation of crimes just equates to an annoyances makes little sense to me unless we are talking petty crimes that don't have real victims.

Also, I do believe in free will.  Certainly this man or others similar were put in bad situations where that free will is significantly altered, but I do believe the free will still exists.

Offline Dave_Manchester

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #130 on: December 08, 2016, 02:34:17 PM »
This isn't quite on topic, but it's conneced with the idea of very severe punishment appropriate to certain crimes.

A few days ago I was reading about America's most secure prison, reserved for its most dangerous and heinous criminals: ADX Florence. Inmates include the likes of Ted Kaczynski, Richard Reid (the 'shoe bomber'), Djokhar Tsarnaev (Boston marathon bomber), and various other assorted 9/11 organisers, cartel leaders, serial child rapists, and mob bosses.

Among this list of reprobates was a guy I'd never heard of (though probably should have) called Robert Hanssen. His picture and brief biography stood out to me, it's why I noticed him. A clearly very well-heeled and educated man. Very long story short he was an FBI agent who had been spying for the Soviets and later Russia for more than 20 years. Treason in other words.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Hanssen

A film was recently made about him, starring Chris Cooper.

He was sentenced to 15 life terms (despite personally never having killed anyone) without the possibility of parole, and will now live out the remainder of his days spending 23 hours a day in solitary confinement.

Since reading this story a few days ago I've been trying to decide for myself - does he really deserve that level of horrific punishment? I don't have my opinion yet. Treason is a very serious crime if you've decided to serve your country, no doubt, but I can't help thinking that Hanssen's strange (to me) punishment was designed to serve as a warning to others in the FBI or CIA who are thinking of doing it, rather than as an appropriate sentence for someone like him (as far as I can tell, not one single expert describes him as a danger to himself or to others, or as a flight risk, so why the 23-hours-a-day solitary confinement in the most secure prison in America alongside the terrrorists and psychotic contract killers?)

Any thoughts on whether you think the guy deserves this kind of incarceration? Do you think (if it were available in this case) he deserves the death penalty for what he did?
« Last Edit: December 08, 2016, 02:56:13 PM by Dave_Manchester »

Offline El Barto

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #131 on: December 08, 2016, 03:08:55 PM »
However, I know this was talked about somewhere else on this forum, but at what point does that summation of smaller offenses equal a death sentence?
At no point. You don't off somebody for being a pain in the ass. At that point you can't even latch onto the Pentateuch to rationalize your annoyance, which is essentially all it is.

Quote
Also, while he had a terrible childhood that no doubt played a role in shaping his terrible life, I can't find that as an excuse to not execute him (assuming his crimes warranted that).  I'm not sure any of his back story should have any weight on his sentence (I don't think you were implying this, just stating) as unfortunate as that may be.
Well, as somebody who denies the existence of free will, I disagree. Nobody asks for the sum-total of their existence.

edit: Sorry Stadler, I'm answering it for you.

If someone is a disturbance to society, they shouldn't get unlimited attempts to try and assimilate.  Whether you say they should die or just be locked up is a fine debate, but to think the summation of crimes just equates to an annoyances makes little sense to me unless we are talking petty crimes that don't have real victims.
There are myriad ways of dealing with such a person. Locking him up, for example. The problem is from people who take offense at having to pay to keep such a person alive. Sorry, but that's an annoyance. And for what it's worth, I find it an annoyance, as well. Just for different reasons.

Quote
Also, I do believe in free will.  Certainly this man or others similar were put in bad situations where that free will is significantly altered, but I do believe the free will still exists.
Yet who among us is qualified to determine where that freewill, now altered, intersects with the ability to control one's actions? You can only speak from your own perspective.
Argument, the presentation of reasonable views, never makes headway against conviction, and conviction takes no part in argument because it knows.
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Offline El Barto

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #132 on: December 08, 2016, 03:17:30 PM »
This isn't quite on topic, but it's conneced with the idea of very severe punishment appropriate to certain crimes.

A few days ago I was reading about America's most secure prison, reserved for its most dangerous and heinous criminals: ADX Florence. Inmates include the likes of Ted Kaczynski, Richard Reid (the 'shoe bomber'), Djokhar Tsarnaev (Boston marathon bomber), and various other assorted 9/11 organisers, cartel leaders, serial child rapists, and mob bosses.

Among this list of reprobates was a guy I'd never heard of (though probably should have) called Robert Hanssen. His picture and brief biography stood out to me, it's why I noticed him. A clearly very well-heeled and educated man. Very long story short he was an FBI agent who had been spying for the Soviets and later Russia for more than 20 years. Treason in other words.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Hanssen

A film was recently made about him, starring Chris Cooper.

He was sentenced to 15 life terms (despite personally never having killed anyone) without the possibility of parole, and will now live out the remainder of his days spending 23 hours a day in solitary confinement.

Since reading this story a few days ago I've been trying to decide for myself - does he really deserve that level of horrific punishment? I don't have my opinion yet. Treason is a very serious crime if you've decided to serve your country, no doubt, but I can't help thinking that Hanssen's strange (to me) punishment was designed to serve as a warning to others in the FBI or CIA who are thinking of doing it, rather than as an appropriate sentence for someone like him (as far as I can tell, not one single expert describes him as a danger to himself or to others, or as a flight risk, so why the 23-hours-a-day solitary confinement in the most secure prison in America alongside the terrrorists and psychotic contract killers?)

Any thoughts on whether you think the guy deserves this kind of incarceration? Do you think (if it were available in this case) he deserves the death penalty for what he did?
I could be mistaken, but wouldn't a person such as himself have been eligible for the death penalty? You'll never get a defense of American prisons out of me, but I'm not sure a potential death sentence makes him the best example of the wrongs.

But yes, we do use such things to set examples. I don't think very many of the people we send to ADX actually pose a greater threat than other maximum security prisoners. At this point it's simply the most severe punishment we can administer short of a needle.

By the way, look into Woody Harrelson's dad. He spent the last few years of his life there. Enlightened fellow, I thought. He was pretty clear that he thought the whole place was designed to destroy people's minds, but also that intelligent people such as himself could cope far better there than with the general population. They had shuffled him around quite a bit and Florence was the only place he actually enjoyed. He read vociferously. Watched lots of cable news. Wrote letters and journals of his thoughts. Never had to worry about getting shanked or fighting over the last roll at dinner. It might be on his wikiP page, but somewhere is a handwritten letter he wrote to a friend on the outside that I found quite interesting. 
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Offline cramx3

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #133 on: December 08, 2016, 03:20:25 PM »
In response to Dave,

Death penalty sounds way better than 23 hours of solitary confinement for life.

I guess what secrets he let out would help me determine what kind of punishment he should get and maybe you are right that he was made an example out of.  I will say that treason should be taken pretty seriously so I'm not against a hard sentence in that scenario, but he got something worse than death IMO.

In response to Barto:

Ok yea it's definitely annoying on some level and agree, but it's a drain on society and the guy clearly won't learn or adapt in that scenario so it's hard for me to think differently even when in my view, I am trying to be fair.  I know we won't agree on this as I recall this exact convo last year or something  :lol  As for the free will part, there is a grey area on psychological issues IMO.  I think it's easy to blame psychological issues, but I still think someone in lots of cases free willingly chose to do something wrong.  I don't think you can always use "I had a bad childhood" as an excuse to commit crimes whereas there may be times where that is the case.

Offline El Barto

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #134 on: December 08, 2016, 03:55:32 PM »
In response to Dave,

Death penalty sounds way better than 23 hours of solitary confinement for life.

I guess what secrets he let out would help me determine what kind of punishment he should get and maybe you are right that he was made an example out of.  I will say that treason should be taken pretty seriously so I'm not against a hard sentence in that scenario, but he got something worse than death IMO.

In response to Barto:

Ok yea it's definitely annoying on some level and agree, but it's a drain on society and the guy clearly won't learn or adapt in that scenario so it's hard for me to think differently even when in my view, I am trying to be fair.  I know we won't agree on this as I recall this exact convo last year or something  :lol  As for the free will part, there is a grey area on psychological issues IMO.  I think it's easy to blame psychological issues, but I still think someone in lots of cases free willingly chose to do something wrong.  I don't think you can always use "I had a bad childhood" as an excuse to commit crimes whereas there may be times where that is the case.
In your response to your response to Dave, again, Harrelson. A person who is comfortable being alone will do just fine there. I'd probably prefer it, myself, given reasonable means to find enlightenment. But to the bulk of society, yeah, torturous shit. Not suitable for an allegedly civilized society.

As for your response to me, I don't actually disagree with you. There are people to whom it doesn't really apply. The problem is that you either need to accept that there are instances where the circumstances of their lives are pertinent, which I believe you just did, and then try and figure out who this does and does not apply to, or dismiss the entire thing outright and remove past history from the equation altogether. I find the latter to be wrong, and the former to be impossible.

Insofar as the sum of their crimes eventually earning a death sentence, it's not my intention to call you a monster but, well, executing somebody because they become a drain on society is what sci-fi villains in dystopic futures do.  :lol
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Offline cramx3

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #135 on: December 08, 2016, 04:07:39 PM »
Oh, you can call me a monster  :lol I believe I certainly can be.  I think my views on death penalty are extreme.  I just loose faith in people when they show time and time again they are "bad people" and I am all for second chances, even thirds maybe depending on situation, but it's about the life of a person.  If the life has been negative allt he way through, I start to lose my humanity towards said person.  I get it, it's brutal, but it's how I feel on the situation.  And I'm no innocent person either speaking from some high horse.  I've gotten in trouble with the law before.  I'm also talking about crimes that hurt innocent people.  Not petty stuff just to be clear. 

As for solitary confinement vs death, I guess to each their own.  I don't know how I could survive 23 hours alone in a room without connection to the outside world.  I feel like I'd go insane and would just ask to be killed. 

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #136 on: December 09, 2016, 07:56:28 AM »
Funny how this was in the news today (although there is nothing funny about this story)

https://www.yahoo.com/news/alabama-scheduled-execute-man-clerks-1994-killing-084353447.html

Even as much as I am in favor of the death penalty, this case is troublesome in the fact that the jury rules in favor of a life sentence not death, but the judge over ruled and said he gets the death penalty due to the murder being of execution style.  Which leads back to the point of the topic, I still think it's important to follow the laws and procedures for trials so everyone get's their due diligence.  I think this guy shouldn't of been executed if his jury of peers did not think so.

Offline Stadler

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #137 on: December 09, 2016, 08:19:42 AM »
Isn't the answer el Barto gave to Cram about free will the same answer here?   Meaning, isn't it problematic to try to prescribe one punishment to a bunch of different people and expect the same reaction and/or the same result. 

Offline El Barto

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #138 on: December 09, 2016, 08:25:32 AM »
Funny how this was in the news today (although there is nothing funny about this story)

https://www.yahoo.com/news/alabama-scheduled-execute-man-clerks-1994-killing-084353447.html

Even as much as I am in favor of the death penalty, this case is troublesome in the fact that the jury rules in favor of a life sentence not death, but the judge over ruled and said he gets the death penalty due to the murder being of execution style.  Which leads back to the point of the topic, I still think it's important to follow the laws and procedures for trials so everyone get's their due diligence.  I think this guy shouldn't of been executed if his jury of peers did not think so.
While I agree with your final remark, this is the way they crafted their law. It's not a matter of ignoring process because the judge has that power built into it. I think it's way too much power to afford one guy, but in the end it's just another reason to pretend Alabama doesn't exit.
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Offline gmillerdrake

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Re: Guilty Until Proven Innocent
« Reply #139 on: April 11, 2017, 08:15:39 AM »
I wouldn't even waste the tax money on a trial for this waste of plasma, this man IS guilty and CANNOT prove his innocence. He should have to die suffocating like the defenseless infant he suffocated did, immediately, not 20 years from now. 

http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/father-accused-of-suffocating--month-old-boy-in-st/article_8a1cefb3-596c-5ceb-8013-946e4ed385f1.html
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