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Case Closed: The Death Penalty Is Morally Wrong

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posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 12:17 PM
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originally posted by: Kromlech
The death penalty? Oh you mean JUSTICE?

And clearly justice isn't being served if you want to pamper murderers with "rehabilitation." He's a murderer, not a drug addict.

Well clearly there's no point trying to rehabilitate someone who is facing the death penalty or life in prison, because they'll never be coming back into society. But for those who will be coming out of prison, I think the OP has a very good point, we shouldn't just treat them like subhuman scum bags and lock them in a tiny cage where the toilet is right next to the bed. It is growing up in such poor conditions which causes people to become criminals. People often act the way you treat them, if you treat them as subhuman derelicts then that's what they will become.

Convicts almost always leave prison more hardened than when they went in, the guards treat them like worthless animals the whole time and it degrades their sense of self-worth. If they were rehabilitated while in prison then they could leave prison with useful knowledge about how to rebuild their life, but instead they leave with more knowledge about how to commit crimes and get away with it. Fixating on dishing out the harshest possible revenge punishments for criminals is not healthy for society, it's emotionally fueled short sightedness.
edit on 19/6/2015 by ChaoticOrder because: (no reason given)




posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 12:20 PM
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a reply to: ChaoticOrder




Seems to me that was a very long winded way of saying that we shouldn't completely blame people for their actions because they may have had a screwed up life which caused them to get the way they are.


Yeah, but putting it that way is too easy. It really sounds like an opinion, whereas developmental psychology and developmental neurobiology actually EXPLAIN (what you disparage as "long winded") how these things become MECHANISTICALLY. It is cause-effect. An abusive husband -> stressed out pregnant mother -> stress hormones influence the organization of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal stress axis of the developing fetus -> Baby is born (lets say without a stressful birth) without the normal vaginal route to spare her vagina the widening -> not going through the vagina deprives the infant of important probacteria -> Mother decides not to breastfeed to spare her sagging breasts -> Infant doesn't receive the important immunological factors from the mothers breastmilk -> infant develops Asthma, or Sensory Delay issues as a result of immune deficiencies.

See the cause and effect process? The details are interesting. Simply saying "the death penalty is wrong", out of an intuitive conviction, may be right, but is anything but logically convincing. On the other hand, knowing that affect communication engenders certain responses in the infant - which in turn shapes how how his genes express themselves - is fundamentally transformational. This is a HUGE step forward for the human species.



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 12:26 PM
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a reply to: pl3bscheese

Ok, Fine, I'm an elitist.

Maybe one day if you ever decide to recognize the insecurity that incites you to write "you're coming off as an elitist" you might recognize the importance of what I write. And also, how utterly difficult it can be, for me, to share information with others, when others straight-jacket my sharing knowledge as being "elitist".

I do not think I'm a 'genius' knowing what I do. I feel nothing but fortunate and thankful to be in this position. However, with human beings - being so innately "status-driven", when one person has knowledge and acts like an "effectuator", the instinctive response from others tends to be what you just wrote i.e. "you're elitist". Or "you're arrogant". Again, the system-effects, the fact that no one can really control where they are - what I know what I know, for example, is simply a result of my being in a certain place at a certain time (that is, contextual) and so I really don't feel much in the way of "I am smarter than you", although I know, from my own experience with others, that this is what one is instinctively led to feel.



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 12:30 PM
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TLDR - it's an Internet thread with your opinion, not a science textbook.

Many people can be rehabilitated.

Others can't.

When those who can't commit heinous, vile, horrific acts I no longer have any interest in providing them with three hots and a cot and cable access for a lifetime.



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 12:35 PM
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What exactly makes your morality any more real or tangible than the morality of any other individual?

Is it a religious belief? A Philosophical ideology to which you subscribe? Or better yet, science?

What if someone other than yourself has a morality that says you're wrong?

Edit: Just in case you're only impressed by mob collectivism, what if it's a large group of people on this planet that think you're wrong?
edit on 19-6-2015 by TurtleSmacker because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 12:38 PM
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a reply to: Astrocyte

I may have misread you, but it did come off that way. I guess we differ in that I find education to be a complete work in progress. I don't act like taking some college courses and reading some books makes me have a clue on how human beings operate. Most of this is still in it's early stage of understanding, it's exciting, but no.. I don't buy into anyone's systems that lead to strict conclusions regarding human beings. It does come off as arrogant to me. I don't think you mean this, but I'm just being honest here.



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 12:40 PM
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a reply to: Astrocyte


See the cause and effect process?


Of course I agree with you, it's important to show evidence to back up your position, but I don't think many people would deny that our past history shapes who we are now. The question is, can we just boil everything down to cause and effect and leave no room for free will? If it's all just entirely deterministic, one event leading to the next event, like falling dominoes, that means my future is already determined, and has been since the start of time. It means mass murderers were always destined to commit mass murder and there's absolutely nothing they could have done to change that.

It seems to me we can't really blame anyone for their actions if their actions were predetermined. That is the problem of trying to boil everything down the cause and effect, it undermines the idea of morality and the legal system as a whole. We can't blame Bob for raping Alice because it was all just deterministic neuronal activity which made him do it. If I programmed an android to go on a murdering spree, it would only be doing exactly what I programmed it to do. Unless I had discovered an algorithm to make it self-aware then no one would blame the robot, they'd blame me for building it and programming it to kill people.

This is why I like to ascribe some sort of free-will ability to the human brain. You're saying that we shouldn't totally blame people for their actions because they're just machines constrained by biology, but if we take that point of view to the extreme then there's no point blaming anyone for anything they do. I have actually written a rather long thread on this very subject not too long ago: Existential Musings - Part 1: Determinism & Free Will. Not only does determinism undermine the legal system, it undermines the entire scientific process because our decision to do one experiment rather than another is predetermined, as are the measurements we decide to carry out.
edit on 19/6/2015 by ChaoticOrder because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 12:42 PM
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a reply to: ChaoticOrder

See! I knew we'd end up agreeing on something eventually


So you think both are at play, and leaning towards either as root cause is folly.

Cool. I consider all factors, and conclude that you can't really conclude much outside "it's all happening, man" ... LOL



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 12:44 PM
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originally posted by: Prezbo369
By executing these criminals, how are we then any different?

Our blood lust brings us down to their level and we shouldn't let that happen, not if we want to be a civilized society...


Murder is the act of shedding innocent blood. When a murderer is executed, "innocent blood" isn't being shed. You can't equate the two or pretend there's "no difference."
edit on 19-6-2015 by Kromlech because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 12:52 PM
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I cringe when I hear someone say they don't want their tax dollars going to pay to imprison these monsters, or to pay for their cable tv. Well, I don't want my tax dollars going towards their death either.

Seems to me that society would be better off if we were to keep them alive and investigate the mind of people that commit these horrific acts. If we were to learn a bit more about how their brain reacts chemically or psychologically, wouldn't that knowledge help us identify other people that may have the same issues and help them before they lash out violently?



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 12:53 PM
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The biggest reason why i am against the death penalty, i feel thats is the easy way out for the criminal, cage them for life with little or no human contact, and make sure they live a very long lonely life.

Now thats worst than death in my eyes.



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 12:56 PM
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a reply to: Shamrock6

Despite their being "channeled", psychologically and biologically (the architecture of their neurons and inter-neuronal communication) to act the way they did?

What exactly, may I ask, is so difficult to understand about that? You said what I wrote was opinion - not a science textbook. Do you acknowledge such things as a "science textbook"? If yes - are you willing to accept that as a developmental psychologist (which is what I am) I am informed of these things, and so, despite this thread being "my opinion" - it is an opinion formed from science, and thus, is a "scientific opinion"?

Sometimes people setup this dichotomy "opinion" vs. "science", as if they don't occur together; every science book is written by a person, who, of course, has opinions. On the other hand, science is all about methodologically "winnowing out" arbitrary and subjective feelings about what one hopes or expects. For instance, the science of how an adult affects an infant is simply observational: you see what the parent does, and you see how the infant responds. You increase the number of examples/cases to get a more "quantitative" value, so that you can see more accurately what factors are responsible for which effects.

So yes, what I've written is my opinion, but it is also an opinion founded on basic science. Since science is meant to suggest "objective reality" - in that great pains are taken to exclude certain types of biasing information (such as the anger one feels when people are killed) - I would hope that people could recognize how important it is when people speak from the perspective of 'science'.

Yes, tax-payer money goes to support people who commit crimes. However, if you were to really watch the developmental "tracks" which guide people (from basic, species-wide, organizing principles, such as the need to adapt to painful experiences) up until the point where they commit their horrendous deed, how could we honestly say "this person I can tolerate", whereas this person, although he is totally unlucky (given what we understand about development) what he did was too heinous for me to allow him to survive.

People aren't animals. I can understand the temptation to kill someone who kills 9 other people but when you consider these factors - both how his neurobiology structurally biases his attentional processes (via his development and the experiences hes had to "build" to make-meaning in his environment), and how present contextual influences interact with his neurobiology, it really isn't his fault. It's a systems effect: a "tipping point", or "climax" occurs, where what scaffolds a present state leads into a new state. For example, his craziness, not being noted by his father, was "equipped" by his fathers decision to buy him a handgun. Now with his background (neurobiologically/psychologically) an environment that is not in the least bit perceptive (father, family etc) and he goes and kills a bunch of people.

Taxation is not something people "should do"; it is a moral corollary of the fact that we develop in a system. Some of us are "on top", others are at the bottom. Taxes remedy this situation by ACKNOWLEDGING, at a basic, factual level, that whatever happens in society, good or bad, is a function of our collective activity. So, if anyone, even the worst offender (a mass-murderer) goes awry, it's not merely his fault, but a collective failure to prevent the formation of a person who would be motivated to do such a thing.



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 01:06 PM
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a reply to: Astrocyte

Your argument against the death penalty seems inconsistent in my opinion.

On the one hand, you've taken a hard determinist's view of the murderer's actions (effectively no free will and therefore no responsibility) while on the other hand, you've taken the metaphysical libertarian's view of the actions of the would be executioners (free will and therefore responsibility).

I myself tend toward a compatibilist view that a person has motivations that are deterministic in nature but also the free will to decide how to act upon them barring certain neurophysiological conditions that preclude decision making.



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 01:22 PM
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Sorry, but I'm not taking the blame for some jackwagon that decides to pull a trigger, or swing a blade, or (insert murder method here).
This thread does nothing but present excuses for murderers.
They made the choice. The penalty for that choice is written down, and widely known. They can take what they have coming.

That is "case closed" for me.



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 02:12 PM
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a reply to: ProfessorChaos

Agreed.

To me, this is all a bunch of fancy way of saying "can't handle the notion that the world has some seriously messed up people in it and sometimes they do seriously messed up things, so we're gonna come up with a reason for it that spreads blame around."



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 03:34 PM
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a reply to: Astrocyte

Clearly you haven't studied sociopaths. Their brains are physically different. I agree the majority of the populations of prisons are full of people who are products of bad child-rearing and/or bad circumstances. You can't, however, say that everyone falls into that category. There are truly evil people out there, because they wholeheartedly believe they are doing humanity a favor by killing.

Sociopaths have a higher propensity (because of their brain) to become "evil" people. Once one of these individuals has made up their mind, it cannot be changed, therefore taking them out of society is the only reasonable course of action, whether that's killing them or locking them up for life. It doesn't really matter which it is, as long as they never again interact with the general populace.

Let me also add that the whole premise of your argument is "they can't help the way they are", which I could easily extend to the way in which we're all born. In essence, we could all blame our parents, grandparents, generation... for the way we are, but that would be absurd, wouldn't it? No matter how you're born or what situations we are derived from, we either succeed or we fail, there is no passing of blame. We all take responsibility for our lives and our actions. I feel like you're just crying over spilt milk...
edit on 19-6-2015 by Aedaeum because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 03:55 PM
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originally posted by: Shamrock6
a reply to: ProfessorChaos

Agreed.

To me, this is all a bunch of fancy way of saying "can't handle the notion that the world has some seriously messed up people in it and sometimes they do seriously messed up things, so we're gonna come up with a reason for it that spreads blame around."


We all have to do our "fair share", right?



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 05:57 PM
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originally posted by: Kromlech
Murder is the act of shedding innocent blood. When a murderer is executed, "innocent blood" isn't being shed. You can't equate the two or pretend there's "no difference."


Murder is the unlawful killing of a human by another human with malice aforethought. That we create 'laws' that allow us to kill doesn't change the fact that we are still killing.

“You can judge a society by how well it treats its prisoners”

And if we execute them what do you think that says about us?



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 07:07 PM
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a reply to: Prezbo369

Exactly and we treat our prisoners like they're guests at a 5 star hotel. Though in all honesty, if we wanted to get rid of the people in our prisons, we would rehabilitate them. Sadly they're worth more money owned by the state, which is why we have an overflow problem. No one is willing to actually care about them outside of giving them all they need to live completely dependent on the government.

As far as killing prisoners, you do realize that is only for those who are deemed excessively dangerous. You make it out as if we're killing prisoners all the time. Reality check.... I say again, our prisons are overflowing...

The ignorance in here is over 9000!

edit on 19-6-2015 by Aedaeum because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 19 2015 @ 07:16 PM
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a reply to: Prezbo369

You can judge society by *insert whatever you want here.*

There is a difference between killing and murder. You can kill without murdering. You can't murder without killing.

A point that seems lost on some.




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