Wednesday, 10 October 2007

The Death of the Death Penalty?

I see that Helen Clark is throwing herself behind a UN resolution which would have the death penalty banned internationally (at least in Western countries; I don't see how, for instance, African or Arabic dictatorships would abide) Although the resolution isn't something I am overly concerned about, I don't support the death penalty for the same reason as Sus at Sus's Sound-Bites: I simply don't trust the government with that much power, and mistakes can always be made.

One of my concerns though is that the US will use its veto power in this instance. Despite the fact that most American states have abolished the death penalty, Texas, which is the state George W Bush was once governor of, executes as many people as Iran (which is stupid and downright inhumane in a Western society). At least they're not for political reasons, even though the American Justice System seems more content at putting a black man in jail for a crime they have no proof he committed, than a white man who did commit the crime.

The death penalty debate is reminiscent of the slavery debate a few hundred years ago. This time, however, hopefully Americans are too civilized to start a civil war over the death penalty.

Ironically, Venezuela was the first country to abolish the death penalty about a century and a half ago. It'll probably become the latest to re-enact it, as well.

And with all the general Leftist bias, I wouldn't be surprised if they counted Cuba as a nation which has abolished the death penalty, despite the obvious claims to the contrary.


riki said...

Punishment is all about degrees
In this case capital punishment.

I believe on the account of 2-3 confirmed eye witnesses the death penalty is appropriate.

with no eye witnesses on a guilty decision jail with possibility of parole depending on serverity or lack thereof of offence.

Nick C said...

Interesting sentiment Riki. Are you suggesting that we have varying degrees of guilt with, "We know he's guilty" to "Well, we arent really all that sure to be honest". In the law people are either considered guilty or not guilty, there is no inbetween.

riki said...


thats why we have juries.

why spend 1,000's of $$$ on someone who blatantly killed in cold blood and was seen to do it.

obviously there are innocent people in jail who had no eye witnesses to vouch for them.

Ajudge once incarcerated a man because his prints were found at the scene but tens of people testified he was seen elsewhere at time of scene. obviously that judge was detrimental to justice.

a jury of peers let to assesss from eye witness accounts can cast a decision with free conscience.