Thursday, March 22, 2007

Did I just see a dead guy?

On the way to work this morning, I was driving my usual 64 in a 55. You know, 9 your fine 10 your mine. As I was cruising along, I looked in my rear view mirror only to see a State Highway Patrol car coming quickly. I know better than to slam on my brakes and draw attention to myself, and since he already had me if he wanted to, I just slowed down to a better speed. To my surprise he flew by me followed by another State boy I hadn't even seen. As I looked in the back seat of the second cruiser, I swear I saw that guy that was supposed to be put to death on Tuesday. When they stayed his execution they transferred him to the Youngstown, Ohio maximum security prison. I haven't been paying enough attention to know if they rescheduled it. But I do know that if it's back on, they would have to drive the exact roads I do to get to the Lucasville, Ohio prison where the execution will take place. So anyway, I may have seen a guy that will be dead tonight. Weird, huh?

Quick facts about capital punishment...
Only two states in the union completely dis-allow executions. New York and Kansas.
Eleven states don't have a death penalty statute.
Three states allow the death penalty but haven't had an execution since 1976.
All the rest perform executions.

What do you think? Is the death penalty for murdering someone right or wrong?


Blogger Adrienne said...

A.) My brother got stopped and got a written warning for going 69 in a 65. A few weeks later he got stopped for going 69 in a 65 and was told he was going to get a warning. The officer came back to the car and said, "Oh, I see warnings don't do you much good so I am going to give you a ticket." And sure enough. Be glad you are luckier than that. (or at the very least a quicker learner!)

B.) That is kind of creepy. Won't you always be curious now?

C.)I am for the death penalty. But, being the cruel and hateful person that I am, I think if you are guilty it shouldn't be drawn out for years & years. Something like this...commit a crime. Go to trial. The verdict is read. You did it. Boom. It's over. That should be the end of that.

Okay, so maybe that sounds a little heartless, but the bottom line is we spend too much time catering to ruthless killers, etc.

By the way, I think chain-gang style prisons are a good idea too.

11:31 AM  
Blogger Sam said...

Devil's Advocate response to you Adrienne: What if the jury was wrong and the criminal was found to be not-guilty a few years later?

Did I mention during my Ghost Hunt stuff that the Mansfield Reformatory was completely self-sufficient? Clothes, food, electricity, everything! Why did we stop doing that with our prisons?

12:07 PM  
Blogger Sam said...

Sam's response to the Devil:
If we did what Adrienne is suggesting, there wouldn't be any need to re-investigate the case. It would be closed and sealed and no one would question anything.

12:12 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

I thought that I had heard that it would be at least another 6 months till everything cleared again for him to be possibly executed.
How many people are out there today, totally innocent of doing anything wrong, that won't be given another 6 months to live because of a disease, accident or whatever? I think that each day of our life is precious and when a murderer takes that life away from another person the only thing they should get is executed. I think that murderers precious life should be taken away from them too, for the same reason they took the others life. I know that I may sound harsh but if I ended up killing someone the most I should deserve would be to enjoy less of my life too. That killer you possibly saw today has been in jail for over 15 years. It doesn't seem fair compared to the life he took that many years ago. Just my thoughts without thinking about it too much, I could be a little off kilter but thats what I believe.

12:37 PM  
Blogger Adrienne said...

Well said, Laura. It does sound harsh, but killing isn't really a gentle subject.

Devil, I mean, Sam...In cases of question I sure wouldn't want to be on the jury. I'm sure there are a few times that mistakes are made, but before we were worry about those, I say lets worry about people like that sick (I can't think of a bad enough name) guy in FL who kidnapped, raped, and then buried that little Jessica alive. They know he did it...there should be no question. Heck, I don't even think he should get a trial - he should have just been taken out on a public corner and murdered in the most horrendous way a person could think of. Much like his victim was.

Anyway. I can't argue that because you did a great many dead guys do you know fighting their sentence? ;p

If people really knew what their outcome was going to be for committing a crime and we followed through with those things, there would have to be a drop in crime.

I don't remember hearing that the Mansfield Reformatory was self-sufficient. Interesting...

True fact. The Adam State Campus, years ago, for some reason, was going to be used to house some prisoners, but, it didn't meet the guidelines for what is good enough for prisoners.

By the way, I also feel that accidentally killing someone(vehicles, etc.) are not grounds for being held on murder. I think when you go out and live your life you should be accepting the fact that accidents do happen. Someone shouldn't always have to pay just because something bad happens.

1:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't like it. ~aMY

3:03 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

I agree, only cruel and premeditated murder should be considered for the death penalty. Only on the basis of intentional murder should there be any thought to make it capital punishment. I love the fact and wish that prisons still were self sufficient or at least still had a way to defray the costs of keeping the inmates. I hear that it costs 1 million tax dollars to keep each inmate thats been in prison for 50 years.

6:04 PM  
Blogger Kyle said...

2 or 3 cents from kyle:

Killing is killing wether its murder or the death penalty. Just because someone sinned doesnt mean we should sin, too. And if you think that youre not breaking the sixth commandment because youre not the one doing the execution, remember that they do it in the name of the people of OHIO... not in my name... please.

second, we talked about this subject quite a lot here at bluffton, and I got to hear good points from both sides of the issue. Anyway, there have been studies that show that death penalty is not a very good deterant of murder. the majority of murders out there are because of deep emotion and hatred toward someone. People dont think about consequences when theyre fuming mad... plus, once the killer does the deed, they don't want to murder anyone else. theyre no threat.

I am also taken to the passage in John 8 where the woman is about to be stoned and Jesus says "let he who is without sin cast the first stone," Everybody left. Nobody condemned her. That was the first time that lady knew love.

Why can't we love murderers?

We talked about the death penalty a while ago at LMC and my Uncle brought up a story about someone he knew on death row for murder that had somehow managed to get sentenced to life in prison instead. When the guy got old and came to know Jesus Christ a few years before he died. Praise God we didnt kill him when he was younger.

just remember that your anger toward a killer is no better than the murderer's anger when he/she did the deed...

Jesus said "You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, 'Do not murder,and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.' But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brotherwill be subject to judgment.

sorry if it seems like im condemning anyone... I'm just very opinionated about this.


8:17 PM  
Blogger drifter said...

I also disagree with the death penalty although mostly different reasons than kyle. I mean to say that It is a deterant in that anyone executed will never kill again. The idea of judgment is certainly biblical - not many on this board will disagree that God will judge and sentence a fate worse than death. The adulteress who Christ forgave was mostly a victim. I didn't see him doing the same for murderers.

Anyway after about 36 years as a advocate of capitol punishment, I spent a year of my life dealing with the court system (professionally that it). Plain and simple our court system (although the best in the world) is not fair. not even close. If you're poor your screwed. If you're poor and not very smart - you are just toast.

I will never see our system the same. You think you know how our system works from what you learned in highschool. Sorry that the idea, but not the reality.

It is for that reason that I can't agree with Capitol Punishment

10:56 PM  
Blogger Adrienne said...

Well, Kyle, I feel compelled to up you two for a nickel! I just like to stretch my brain every now and again and Sam's "controversial" blogs are a good way to do it. I'm not trying to be mean or pushy.

I have no statistics to back this up, but I think the idea that most people murder someone out of deep emotion is probably a little skewed. Certainly, a person must have deep emotional issues to murder someone, but it doesn't necessarily mean that any old person wouldn't do. A crying baby, a child whom, for some reason, is chosen to fufills a rapists fantasy, the clerk at the gas station being robbed, a person driving down the street who gets in the way of a gang member on a mission - none of those people could have done anything to trigger enough anger to have justified being killed. (Not to imply that you are justifying their behavior!)

I did some studying on the effects of capital punishment and that was an accurate statement that it can't really be proved that it is overall effective. (Although it isn't comparing apples to apples, China has the highest rate of capital punishment in the world and one of the lowest rates of homicide per capita. At least, it is substantially lower than that of the US.)

I found this though, "Why has the death penalty been an ineffective deterrent in the United States? First, capital punishment is applied with neither certainty nor swiftness, the two key characteristics of an effective deterrent. When the death penalty is imposed, it often takes many years for the sentence to be carried out, and in some cases the sentence is not upheld. In the United States in 1999, 271 prisoners were admitted to death row, while more than 15,000 murders were reported to police. In the same year, 88 persons had their sentences overturned."

That, which may be what the Drifter was elluding to, is my real beef with the death penalty or the justice system in general. You know, in countries where you automatically get your hand cut off for stealing...a lot of people don't steal. Not that we should live in fear and be terrorized, but as a nation our people should know that their actions will have consequences and they should know what those consequences will be.

I've read and reread John 8 and I've also read Matthew 7:1-2 "Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you." Along with various other versions of that verse.

If we took that to mean in the physical sense of judging, we couldn't even have a justice system. Who would we be to take a perpetual drunk drivers license from them? To tell someone it is wrong to molest their children? To prohibit husbands from beating on their wifes and vice versa? For that matter, we really wouldn't even be in the right to correct our own children.

What I do believe these verses to mean is that our hearts should not judge. You are right, you shouldn't kill a murderer out of angry, or punish anyone out of anger. You're heart should be free of malice and contempt; you should forgive your enemies. But, I just don't think that that means we shouldn't have consequences for bad behavior.

"why can't we love murderers?" Not to say I would just automatically love someone who murders...and maybe this is a good time to look inside and see if we hold contempt towards others, but, that said...I have a two year old daughter. On (very rare) occasion, she misbehaves or defies me. At those times, I love her as much as I do any time, but that doesn't mean that she doesn't need to be punished. I think that punishment and hate do not have to be intertwined.

As far as the man who was saved in his old age...Having changed the circumstances in his life may well have changed the course of time that it took to come to realize God. I do believe if someone is meant to accept their salvation God will see to it that they get it done.

Just some more food for thought. Like I said, I'm not trying to be mean either, just provoking the old thought machine!

And if you want to know my thoughts on how much money the country could save by putting criminals to work...just ask, I'm not shy to share.

I was my sociology prof's worst nightmare! :p

3:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What about that passage in Romans, "Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: "It is mine to avenge; I will repay,"says the Lord."

or Deuteronomy: "It is mine to avenge; I will repay. In due time their foot will slip; their day of disaster is near and their doom rushes upon them."

8:44 AM  
Blogger Adrienne said...

Of course, two verses later he goes on to say, "Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorties, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgement on themselves. For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authoirty? Then do what is right and he will commend you. For he is God's servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God's servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer." (Romans 13:1-4)

Deuteronomy 19:19-21: ...then do to him as he intended to do to his brother. You must purge the evil from among you. The rest of the people will hear of this and be afraid, and never again will such an evil thing be done among you. Show no pity: life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot."

Of course, Deuteronomy was basicially Moses reminding the people of the law and, fortunately for us, Jesus' coming brought a new laws and forgiveness. ie: "If, however, the charge is true and no proof of the girl's virginity can be found, she shall be brought to the door of her father's house and there the men of her town shall stone her to death. She hs done a disgraceful thing in Israel by being promiscuous while still in her father's house. You must purge the evil from among you." D 22:20&21.

11:41 AM  

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