A quick thought that needs sharing

I don't really have time to sit down and write about it now, but it just bugs me, and I need to get it out.

I watched a BBC documentary The Science of Killing Human Beings this morning.

Okay, "watched" is probably an overstatement: I put it on, watched it for about 5 minutes til I realised that it is too gory of a subject to be watching now, and switched it off... but then I came back and fast-forwarded into bits where he was talking so I could get his viewpoint without seeing the horrible parts.

And in the end, he talks to an American pro-death-penalty advocate.

That part made me squirm. In a nutshell, that advocate said that a painless execution is a wrong way of doing it because victims of those criminals didn't die painless deaths, and so criminals shouldn't get the privilege either. And at that point I just went... what the hell are you talking about!?

By hitting back with the same force over and over again the pain is just going to be re-created and re-created, over and over again - back and forth, back and forth, endlessly. If this is what "peace talks" were about, no war in this world would ever be ended - ever.

And besides, by doing that I feel that he is ignoring the wider picture behind problems in education, healthcare, economics and as a result, in criminal justice.

America is a land of opportunity, but it is also a land where it is a matter of luck which environment a person is born into because that determines their access to education, healthcare and jobs.

But alright, I simply haven't got time to keep writing now; I need to go.

It's eight in the morning and I am already tired.


  1. I've not watched it and probably won't, but my feeling is that the death penalty is appropriate only if that person definitely committed the crimes of which they are accused; and by that I don't mean "beyond reasonable doubt" as that implies that there is still some doubt. I mean 100% we know they did it, the proof it incontrovertible, photographic/video as well as reliable eyewitness and DNA evidence. I don't believe people who are sentenced to death should suffer; if they should then it will be done wherever they go after they die; it's not up to us. Also if we do torture them (and I don't know what else you could call making them suffer first) then it stains the souls of those who kill them and those who consented to the whole process in the first place.

  2. We studied it at school: per every ten thousand sentences - whatever - an x amount of misjustice is carried out. It differs from country to country, and between types of court, and how that data is gathered, but the basic idea stays the same: a number of people who are guilty are acquitted, and a number of people who are NOT guilty are sentenced. Some of them to death. And it's not a case of "beyond reasonable doubt" either because video and photo evidence can be forged, eyewitness accounts can be faulty, DNA data can be misleading - in some cases, though the answer can seem so-so-so straightforward, courts sometimes simply get it wrong.

    Simply. Get it. Wrong.

    On the level of Bachelor's studies it is a piece of math and statistics. On a personal level...

    Well, I'm not sure I really need to get into that, because basically it is simply a fact of life that courts sometimes get it wrong - and even when they really, really, really try to get it right, sometimes they simply get it wrong.