Thursday, June 26, 2008

Death Judges

Talking heads are debating whether or not child rapists should be eligible for the death penalty while the real debate should be whether or not we should expect congress to impeach the 'let them eat cake' judges or if a pitchfork wielding mob storming the Supreme Court is the way to go. McCain should be hitting Obama hard and fast on this (and other things, like voting for higher food prices, bank bailouts and whatnot) as we all know that Obama would appoint more child rapist lovers to the Supreme Court than not (McCain really needs to be more 'Teddy Roosevelt' if he wants to pull out a win).

One caveat that's brought is that there's plenty of people on the right who hate the death penalty as well. However, these people are misguided. I found a pertinent quote from one Ibn Khaldun, arguably the last intelligent Arab social scientist (circa 14th century AD):
Towns, by contrast, are the seats of the crafts, the sciences, the arts, and culture. Yet luxury corrupts them, and as a result they become a liability to the state, like women and children who need to be protected. Solidarity is completely relaxed and the arts of defending oneself and of attacking the enemy are forgotten, so they are no match for conquering nomads.
The point being that only pampered elites like Justice Kennedy could think that society doesn't need to be defended in the strongest possible ways against the monsters that slip into a Supreme Court hearing under the guise of some Rube Goldbergesque law argument. Jonah Goldberg (unrelated to Rube so far as I know) points out:
The death penalty used to be constitutional for barn-burning, horse stealing, fairly minor thefts etc. I completely agree that our evolving standards of decency make that seem like overkill, pardon the pun. But is it really a sign of our evolving standards of decency that brutally raping a child is also on that list? Are we more decent because we don't consider that a capital offense? I don't really see it.
And the reason horse stealing and such were punished by hanging was because it was viewed as insane that society would pay to keep career criminals alive in a pampered state (pampered by criminals standards). Just because we may find ourselves able to financially maintain an ever growing 'lifer' prison population doesn't mean we should.

Others (Bill O'Reilly being one such proponent) have wanted to create a labor camp in American Siberia; but it's rather idiotic to think that the same forces who complain that the terrorists at Guantanamo aren't getting fat enough, are going to roll over and let us build a Gulag in our own territory. Even others still have brought up the fact that *wink, wink, nudge, nudge* the child rapists will be much worse off in prison than death row. That point of view makes me sick. If you think that's just punishment then grow a pair and pass a law that makes 'Austrian Dungeon' one of the sentencing guidelines, otherwise justice shouldn't be left up to chance by outsourcing it to people who are, at best, unreliable.

On another judge note, check out this piece of work:

This is Lorain County Common Pleas Judge James Burge who is local to the northeast Ohio region. Nothing like a judge with a picture of a mass murderer on his wall (that would be Che not Obama). One would think that given his hero that he would be pro-death and thus would have nothing against the death penalty per se. That thought would make sense, something which has no place in the liberal world view. Once Judge Burge was elected he promptly sued the state using the county's money in an effort to find that lethal injection is 'cruel and unusual'. Yes you read that right: the people's judge sued the state he serves on behalf of a criminal who doesn't even have standing since, at least at the time, he hadn't even been convicted yet, let alone sentenced to die:
The case gets more interesting for two reasons. First, Rivera, who is charged with capital murder (which carries the death penalty), has not been yet convicted. There has never been a case in Ohio, or anywhere else, where the method of execution was challenged before the trial. Second, one of the two lawyers involved in the Rivera case is American Civil Liberties Union's Ohio legal director [ACLU] James Gamso. Gamso is challenging the State's right to use the 3-cocktail mixture. Rivera's trial lawyer, Kreig Brusnahan, argued that lethal injection is cruel and unusual punishment based on the execution of Christopher Newton. Prison officials had trouble getting the shunts into Newton's arteries. It took almost two hours to prepare him for execution. Brusnahan argued that waiting two hours was not his idea of a quick and painless death.
At least Ohioans get the option of voting this guy out in 2012.

Update: I've read that Obama came out against this Supreme Court decision; however, I can't decide which is worse: the fact that he'd knowingly appoint and vote for judges who favor leniency for child rapists, or the fact that crap like buggery and partial birth abortion rank higher in his mind than bringing society's worst to justice. At least the former would have some universalist social justice claptrap logic being it; the latter is just throwing his fellow citizens to the wolves because he isn't talented enough to convince people of the logic behind his bad ideas.

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