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What is the O'ist view on the death penalty?

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I believe that a death penalty is proper in any case where we can be certain of the guilt and the murderer’s sanity.  Either he cannot be rehabilitated (and is liable to murder again) or he can be rehabilitated, in which case suicide would be the rational action.  In either case, death is the only just and rational punishment.

While I conceptually agree with that argument, I am experiencing difficulty understanding at what point a criminal is considered sane or insane for committing a crime worthy of capital punishment.

One would need to clarify by what standard a criminal who commits unprovoked murder is sane enough to understand the consequences of his heinous action.

My concern is that if such criminal is declared insane by the state, that the state inevitably relinquishes its obligation to its citizens to protect the rights of its citizens from the actions of such criminal.

You also mention "suicide" in an interesting context.

I question the value of suicide watches over apprehended suspects, especially if the suspect is a repeat offender.

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If you remove him from society, why would you then have to kill him?

Irrational

Changed to address your edited post.

I freely admitted that that is a risk that I'm willing to take. Why? Because it is so remote. I know how to avoid situations like your describing. Life comes with risk.

I'm through discussing this with you Objectivist. I question your use of that term as your nickname.

VES

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autojc

Remove him from society, yes.  Killing him, no.

I want to make certain that you understand my posts regarding the nature of the crime- I'd like to emphasize "unprovoked."

In order to properly deal with such individual, who deprived another of his inalienable right to his life, the government must fulfill its obligation to its citizens to remove such threat from society. If the government does not execute such criminal, then the government must figure out how it is they can ensure that society is protected from such individual. This means that the convicted criminal must be incarcerated for life, without the hope of ever being released. Too often convicted killers are released due to parole considerations. Society has no real assurance that such killers won't prey upon innocents ever again.

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f the government does not execute such criminal, then the government must figure out how it is they can ensure that society is protected from such individual. This means that the convicted criminal must be incarcerated for life, without the hope of ever being released. Too often convicted killers are released due to parole considerations. Society has no real assurance that such killers won't prey upon innocents ever again.

Convicted killers are released if they have a possibility for parole. The ones with life without the possibility of parole never get released. From what I understand. Instead of making all killers have life without the POSSIBITY of parole, you just want to kill them. Come on.

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I do, however, have a concern that certain individuals might be executed who might indeed be innocent, although this rarely seems to happen.

There are lots more than you think. "In a controversial move, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals last week threw out the death sentences of more than 100 prisoners in Arizona, Idaho, and Montana." This is from 2003. Montana, Arizona, and Idaho dont even have the crime rates that many other states have yet, they have 100 cases to throw out because of mistakes in the court process.

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also ive searched for about a total of 10 minutes now, and i have already found over 20 cases where innocent men have been executed. One is WAY TOO MANY. The death of one innocent man is enough to morally demand the stop of the death penalty's practice. To continue it would be to say that, a few sacrifice themselves for "the common good" so that we can keep murderers off the street. I will say this only ONCE more. IT IS MORAL TO HAVE CAPITAL PUNISHMENT, however IT IS NOT MORAL TO KILL INNOCENT PEOPLE. Until the system has ABSOLUTELY NO FLAWS then it should not be practiced.

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thank you Objectivist...im sure there arent too many more, since only recent (as in the past 50 years) cases have been archived and can be researched again to reveal that DNA evidence dismisses the killer of guilt. But the point is one person has died.

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I think that watching porn is immoral, but I do not think it should be illegal because it does not infringe on anyones rights.

Porn is immoral?? That’s the most ridiculous thing I've heard on this forum in a while..

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Porn is immoral?? That’s the most ridiculous thing I've heard on this forum in a while..

Think what you want admin. Have you personaly ever thought about how porn relates to morality? It cheapens the sexual expirience, just the same as casual sex. Oh yea GC, watching porn is very value oriented. ;)

Care to elaborate on that unsupported assertion?

edit to say:

Would John Galt watch porn? Or Howard Roark?

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practically the death penalty is flawed and has killed innocent people

This seems to be to be a glaring logical fallacy.

The death penalty in and of itself can not be flawed, it either is the death penalty or it is not. Wouldn't the flaw, if there is one, lie within the legal system and the individuals responsible for carrying out the law - since human is fallible?

The death penalty has not killed innocent people, individuals who have wrongly condemned innocent people to death row have - because reason is fallible.

I just think that's a rather important distinction to make.

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Would John Galt watch porn?  Or Howard Roark?

No, but not because it is immoral.

They don't value it (they have Dagny to value instead) so what good would it do for them, they have a lot else going on.

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Next time elle please read the body of my argument. That was just a little icing or sprinkles.

Edit (so you don't have to scroll up):

hink what you want admin. Have you personaly ever thought about how porn relates to morality? It cheapens the sexual expirience, just the same as casual sex. Oh yea GC, watching porn is very value oriented.

And could we remain on the death penalty?

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Ugh disgusting!

Elle you need you study more about the transition from morality to politics.  You clearly have no understanding of it.

With all due respect, Objectivist, your disgust with my commentary does little for me. Perhaps you should address my above points and refrain from the attempts to degrade my intelligence.

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With all due respect, Objectivist, your disgust with my commentary does little for me. Perhaps you should address my above points
I told you what knowledge you are missing, what more do you want? Look it up.

What points?

refrain from the attempts to degrade my intelligence.

I am not trying to degrade your intelligence. I am trying to help you discover the knowledge that's missing. Based on your other posts on this site, I happen think you are very intelligent. I am not here to bash, insult or smear. I am here to discuss.

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I am not here to bash, insult or smear.  I am here to discuss.

I accept your sincerity so let's get down to the main points and let me make sure I am clear on your stance and that you are clear on mine. By all means correct any misinterpretations so we can set this all straight and proceed in discussing.

My interpretation is that you believe that the death penalty is morally sound, but doesn't work in the real world (politically) where human beings and their ability to reason are fallible. Therefore you think the death penalty should not be legal.

I think that now, especially with DNA testing available, that the death penalty is morally sound and can be used effectively as a detterent and punishment of murderous crime. I am not denying the reality that innocent people have been sent to death row, but I think we can agree that technological advancements make our justice system much more reliable.

I think that the purpose of our government and our justice system is to protect rational individuals who abide by laws set as a code appropriate to the life of Man from those (irrational) individuals who would infringe upon our individual rights. The justice system is the policeman of individual rights, and the death penalty is the consequence of taking the life of another human being. Duty, in the Kantian sense, is avoided by Objectivists. However, I think no rational individual will avoid the term duty as applied a just government and justice system based in defending individual rights.

I look forward to continuing this discussion once these points are clear. I have to go to class until about 9:30 PST so I will get back to you sometime after then.

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Nimble and I have shown you in previous posts the problem with your theory. They have not been addressed, and until theyy are, I see no reason for discussion.

Basically your interpretation is correct. The problem with your post is that you just repeated others opinions that have already been discussed. For answers look back in the thread. I will not retype or copy and paste my previous refutations.

Go to class? What school do you go to?

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Convicted killers are released if they have a possibility for parole.  The ones with life without the possibility of parole never get released.  From what I understand.  Instead of making all killers have life without the POSSIBITY of parole, you just want to kill them.  Come on.

Not so. Read my post carefully.

Key word is "unprovoked."

Even using those standards I describe, most murderers will wind up in prison for long terms upon conviction.

I only want to see executed those who murder truly innocent victims without any provocation whatsoever.

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also ive searched for about a total of 10 minutes now, and i have already found over 20 cases where innocent men have been executed. One is WAY TOO MANY. The death of one innocent man is enough to morally demand the stop of the death penalty's practice. To continue it would be to say that, a few sacrifice themselves for "the common good" so that we can keep murderers off the street. I will say this only ONCE more. IT IS MORAL TO HAVE CAPITAL PUNISHMENT, however IT IS NOT MORAL TO KILL INNOCENT PEOPLE. Until the system has ABSOLUTELY NO FLAWS then it should not be practiced.

So let's say the government captures Osama Bin Laden.

Using your standards, assuming he gets convicted, would you support the death penalty for him?

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Using your standards, assuming he gets convicted, would you support the death penalty for him?

I know this was addressed to nimble, but no I would not support the death penalty for him. Are you crazy? His case is an extreme one, but the logic remains unchanged. Use logic from supported premises and you will find the answer. That is what Ayn Rand was all about.

If Osama was fighting and trying to kill those attempting to capture him then yes in that instance he deserves to be killed. But if he comes quietly then no, of course not.

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I disagree with this as a standard. (Is Branden implying that this is the only acceptable one?)

Where did Branden say the quote you attribute to him?

To an innocent man, life imprisonment is not a superior alternative to the death penalty.
Really? You mean to say that if you were innocent of a crime, and falsely sentenced to life imprisionment, you would rather be put to death? If nothing else, would not the possibility of evidence which exonerates you be a purpose for you to continue living?

It is however, a major cost to the legal system ...

And what is the value of a human life?

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