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(Christian Science Monitor)   Great news America: probably no more than 4% of those we send to death row are actually innocent of their crimes, and hey, 96% is an "A", isn't it?   (csmonitor.com) divider line 147
    More: Interesting, United States, actually innocent, death row, crimes, University of Michigan Law School, miscarriage of justice  
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1575 clicks; posted to Main » on 29 Apr 2014 at 1:24 PM (12 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-04-29 12:24:37 PM
Better that ten guilty persons go free than one innocent person is wrongfully put to death.
 
2014-04-29 12:33:28 PM
You know, the vast majority of people sent to death row are guilty scumbags that get no sympathy from me.  But I'm not ready to accept any innocents being killed, nor am I willing to see certain people who have better access to/can afford better legal representation to get a lighter sentence than some poor shlub who has to roll the dice with an overworked Public Defender.  And imperfect systems should not impose irreversible punishments.

There are many, many good reasons to scrap the death penalty, and very few reasons to have it.
 
2014-04-29 12:46:09 PM
According to proponents I've heard, the death penalty is a deterrent. So just think how many murders killing just one innocent will prevent.
 
2014-04-29 12:56:48 PM

Lionel Mandrake: There are many, many good reasons to scrap the death penalty, and very few reasons to have it.


There are absolutely no reasons to have it. Unless you count "because feelings" or "I must stroke my vengeance boner" as reasons, which many in this thread will.
 
2014-04-29 01:03:46 PM

Cagey B: Lionel Mandrake: There are many, many good reasons to scrap the death penalty, and very few reasons to have it.

There are absolutely no reasons to have it. Unless you count "because feelings" or "I must stroke my vengeance boner" as reasons, which many in this thread will.


I'm no law-talking guy, but I do watch Law & Order.  Shows like that often show the DP being used as leverage.  As in, "we'll take it off the table if you cooperate/confess/rat-out the others involved, etc."

I'm not sure this happens a whole lot, and even if it does, I'm still 100% anti-death penalty
 
2014-04-29 01:08:23 PM

Lionel Mandrake: I'm no law-talking guy, but I do watch Law & Order. Shows like that often show the DP being used as leverage. As in, "we'll take it off the table if you cooperate/confess/rat-out the others involved, etc."

I'm not sure this happens a whole lot, and even if it does, I'm still 100% anti-death penalty


That's actually a real argument that DA associations make in support of the death penalty. Which boils down to "we can get higher conviction rates if we're allowed to threaten to kill people". Now call me crazy, but that doesn't strike me as a very good reason to keep it around.
 
2014-04-29 01:11:59 PM
This is my sole argument against the death penalty.

Sure, some guys deserve death. No issues, no arguments.

But some guys deserve life...can you give it back to them?

/channeling Gandalf
 
2014-04-29 01:20:26 PM

PreMortem: According to proponents I've heard, the death penalty is a deterrent. So just think how many murders killing just one innocent will prevent.


The death penalty should be the punishment for speeding.  People would drive slower and lives would be saved!!  In fact, let's apply the DP even more broadly.  Think how much safer and more polite society would be!

Overdue library book?  To the gallows!
Farting in an elevator? Crucifixion!
Dropping gum on the sidewalk?  OK, we'll go easy on that one: scourging followed by a liberal application of salt to the wounds

No more namby-pamby soft-on-crime crap
 
2014-04-29 01:27:40 PM
A lot better than it used to be when they were lynching Black people, massacring Natives, and warring with each other.
 
2014-04-29 01:28:20 PM
Imagine how much lower, if existent, that number would be if the judicial system wasn't riddled with racism and corruption.
 
2014-04-29 01:28:26 PM

InterruptingQuirk: Better that ten guilty persons go free than one innocent person is wrongfully put to death.


Trust me, way more guilty people go free than are ever convicted.
 
2014-04-29 01:29:12 PM
Who cares. It makes me feel like a man and that's what's important. Most of these prisoners were better off under slavery anyway. Don't bring them back to my basketball games. And maybe you should care more about the millions of unborn babies that have been sentenced to death row. Did I mention Benghazi? In conclusion, read my lips!
 
2014-04-29 01:29:58 PM

InterruptingQuirk: Better that ten guilty persons go free than one innocent person is wrongfully put to death.


It's actually better if none of those things happen, to be honest.
 
2014-04-29 01:30:17 PM
Frankly, that's a lot better than I would have guessed.
 
2014-04-29 01:30:20 PM

Cagey B: Lionel Mandrake: I'm no law-talking guy, but I do watch Law & Order. Shows like that often show the DP being used as leverage. As in, "we'll take it off the table if you cooperate/confess/rat-out the others involved, etc."

I'm not sure this happens a whole lot, and even if it does, I'm still 100% anti-death penalty

That's actually a real argument that DA associations make in support of the death penalty. Which boils down to "we can get higher conviction rates if we're allowed to threaten to kill people". Now call me crazy, but that doesn't strike me as a very good reason to keep it around.


Why stop there?

"Look, confess to robbing the liquor store and we won't torture and blind your family."
 
2014-04-29 01:30:42 PM
The only people who get the death penalty on their first offense are mass murderers.  Almost everyone sent to death row has a long list of criminal offenses and the needle is basically a Lifetime Achievement Award for their life of crime.  If four percent of them are innocent of the specific crime for which they are executed chances are they already deserved it ten times over anyhow and the rest of us are better off without them.
 
2014-04-29 01:30:44 PM

Dadoody: A lot better than it used to be when they were lynching Black people, massacring Natives, and warring with each other.


So Best America

/yay
 
2014-04-29 01:34:47 PM
The "innocent " on death row are generally pretty bad people anyway even if they are technically innocent of the convicted crime. You or your neighbors aren't in danger of being falsely convicted, but the DA will sometimes turn a blind eye to exculpery evidence when dealing with a know scumbag. Doesn't bother me one farking bit.
 
2014-04-29 01:35:23 PM

Lionel Mandrake: PreMortem: According to proponents I've heard, the death penalty is a deterrent. So just think how many murders killing just one innocent will prevent.

The death penalty should be the punishment for speeding.  People would drive slower and lives would be saved!!  In fact, let's apply the DP even more broadly.  Think how much safer and more polite society would be!

Overdue library book?  To the gallows!
Farting in an elevator? Crucifixion!
Dropping gum on the sidewalk?  OK, we'll go easy on that one: scourging followed by a liberal application of salt to the wounds

No more namby-pamby soft-on-crime crap


Wasn't that the plot of a Star Trek episode?
 
2014-04-29 01:35:43 PM
How did "conservative estimate" in the article become "no more than" in the headline? =/
 
2014-04-29 01:36:03 PM

PreMortem: According to proponents I've heard, the death penalty is a deterrent. So just think how many murders killing just one innocent will prevent.


"It takes balls to execute an innocent man." - Apocryphal Texas Republican primary voter
 
2014-04-29 01:36:14 PM

Cagey B: Lionel Mandrake: I'm no law-talking guy, but I do watch Law & Order. Shows like that often show the DP being used as leverage. As in, "we'll take it off the table if you cooperate/confess/rat-out the others involved, etc."

I'm not sure this happens a whole lot, and even if it does, I'm still 100% anti-death penalty

That's actually a real argument that DA associations make in support of the death penalty. Which boils down to "we can get higher conviction rates if we're allowed to threaten to kill people". Now call me crazy, but that doesn't strike me as a very good reason to keep it around.


In fact, I would argue that is essentially extortion.  "waive your right to a fair trial and plead guilty because if you lose that trial we will do our best to kill you"

is not an argument I am comfortable with my government being allowed to make
 
2014-04-29 01:37:09 PM

Lionel Mandrake: PreMortem: According to proponents I've heard, the death penalty is a deterrent. So just think how many murders killing just one innocent will prevent.

The death penalty should be the punishment for speeding.  People would drive slower and lives would be saved!!  In fact, let's apply the DP even more broadly.  Think how much safer and more polite society would be!

Overdue library book?  To the gallows!
Farting in an elevator? Crucifixion!
Dropping gum on the sidewalk?  OK, we'll go easy on that one: scourging followed by a liberal application of salt to the wounds

No more namby-pamby soft-on-crime crap


Or, basically the legal system of Singapore...
 
2014-04-29 01:37:34 PM

Lionel Mandrake: But I'm not ready to accept any innocents being killed, nor am I willing to see certain people who have better access to/can afford better legal representation to get a lighter sentence than some poor shlub who has to roll the dice with an overworked Public Defender.


So you're under the impression you live in a world where there will be no collateral damage, period, ever, no matter what?
 
2014-04-29 01:39:24 PM

Lionel Mandrake: PreMortem: According to proponents I've heard, the death penalty is a deterrent. So just think how many murders killing just one innocent will prevent.

The death penalty should be the punishment for speeding.  People would drive slower and lives would be saved!!  In fact, let's apply the DP even more broadly.  Think how much safer and more polite society would be!

Overdue library book?  To the gallows!
Farting in an elevator? Crucifixion!
Dropping gum on the sidewalk?  OK, we'll go easy on that one: scourging followed by a liberal application of salt to the wounds

No more namby-pamby soft-on-crime crap


That was a Star Trek episode, right?
 
2014-04-29 01:41:19 PM

Lionel Mandrake: There are many, many good reasons to scrap the death penalty, and very few reasons to have it.


My favorite because it drive Libertarians crazy: do you really want to give the government that you distrust and dislike the power of life and death over you?
 
2014-04-29 01:41:37 PM
I never met anybody who received the death penalty and didn't deserve it.
 
2014-04-29 01:41:44 PM
First off, Subby, FTA 4% is the "low end" estimate, as in  at least 4% are innocent.

Second, the death penalty is terrible as a deterrent -- murder rates are higher in states with the death penalty than without.

Third: 

TheWhoppah: The only people who get the death penalty on their first offense are mass murderers.  Almost everyone sent to death row has a long list of criminal offenses and the needle is basically a Lifetime Achievement Award for their life of crime.  If four percent of them are innocent of the specific crime for which they are executed chances are they already deserved it ten times over anyhow and the rest of us are better off without them.


No.  First off, as was mentioned earlier, prosecutors often use the threat of the death penalty against defendants to get "confessions" or cooperation.  Second, while prior criminal records can be an aggravating factor in determining whether someone is condemned, it isn't the only one.  And third, are you really suggesting that shoplifters or car thieves deserve to be executed for a murder they didn't commit?
 
2014-04-29 01:41:54 PM

HisBoyLeroy: The "innocent " on death row are generally pretty bad people anyway even if they are technically innocent of the convicted crime. You or your neighbors aren't in danger of being falsely convicted, but the DA will sometimes turn a blind eye to exculpery evidence when dealing with a know scumbag. Doesn't bother me one farking bit.


Or they're like Cameron Willingham. Care to share his extensive record?

http://www.innocenceproject.org/Content/Cameron_Todd_Willingham_Wron gf ully_Convicted_and_Executed_in_Texas.php
 
2014-04-29 01:42:32 PM

dwade: Lionel Mandrake: PreMortem: According to proponents I've heard, the death penalty is a deterrent. So just think how many murders killing just one innocent will prevent.

The death penalty should be the punishment for speeding.  People would drive slower and lives would be saved!!  In fact, let's apply the DP even more broadly.  Think how much safer and more polite society would be!

Overdue library book?  To the gallows!
Farting in an elevator? Crucifixion!
Dropping gum on the sidewalk?  OK, we'll go easy on that one: scourging followed by a liberal application of salt to the wounds

No more namby-pamby soft-on-crime crap

Wasn't that the plot of a Star Trek episode?


Yup, "Wesley Crusher Visits the Planet of the Nymphos".
 
2014-04-29 01:42:33 PM
Dow Jones and the Temple of Doom: InterruptingQuirk: Better that ten guilty persons go free than one innocent person is wrongfully put to death.

Trust me, way more guilty people go free than are ever convicted.


So killing innocent people is ok then because some other people weren't caught?  Cool, where do you live, by the way.  cause some people did bad shiat and the cops were too busy seizing private property, uhm i mean enforcing drug laws, to actually protect people.  So if someone killed you, it would somehow balance out. (THIS IS SARCASM, DON"T KILL PEOPLE)

Don't be an idiot, most crimes are not solved.  the vast majority aren't solved.  The police are not under any obligation to solve crimes or protecting citizens.  Most people don't bother reporting crimes because the cops don't do anything.  Well, maybe they will record the crimes as minor offenses so their stats look good.  If not for insurance companies requiring police reports, most people would never contact the police.

I don't get how the right wing nut jobs are all pro death penalty, when they don't trust the government to do anything else?  God forbid the government try to regulate the amount on arsninc in drinking water.  but don't question them when they kill someone with an IQ of 50.
 
2014-04-29 01:42:41 PM

Dwight_Yeast: My favorite because it drive Libertarians crazy: do you really want to give the government that you distrust and dislike the power of life and death over you?


Once again, someone makes the mistaken assumption that such people are bothered by holding contradictory and/or stupid beliefs.
 
2014-04-29 01:43:17 PM

InterruptingQuirk: Better that ten guilty persons go free than one innocent person is wrongfully put to death.


Lionel Mandrake: There are many, many good reasons to scrap the death penalty, and very few reasons to have it.


QFT, Farkers.
 
2014-04-29 01:44:01 PM

InterruptingQuirk: Better that ten guilty persons go free than one innocent person is wrongfully put to death.


You obviously hate America, and by extension freedom.
 
2014-04-29 01:45:31 PM
If the death penalty was an effective deterrent, there would be no murders in the state of Texas. After all, the state not only has the death penalty, they use it.
 
2014-04-29 01:46:00 PM

Capo Del Bandito: Lionel Mandrake: But I'm not ready to accept any innocents being killed, nor am I willing to see certain people who have better access to/can afford better legal representation to get a lighter sentence than some poor shlub who has to roll the dice with an overworked Public Defender.

So you're under the impression you live in a world where there will be no collateral damage, period, ever, no matter what?


You apparently live in a world where "collateral damage" is acceptable even in cases where the activity causing said damage is pointless. So I hope you don't mind when I burn down your house in order to make room to erect a giant statue of 80s Austrian pop-idol Falco. You wouldn't want to be a hypocrite, I'm sure.
 
2014-04-29 01:46:10 PM

Capo Del Bandito: Lionel Mandrake: But I'm not ready to accept any innocents being killed, nor am I willing to see certain people who have better access to/can afford better legal representation to get a lighter sentence than some poor shlub who has to roll the dice with an overworked Public Defender.

So you're under the impression you live in a world where there will be no collateral damage, period, ever, no matter what?


Hey, way to expand the scope of that guy's comment from the criminal justice system to the entire world and everything that could every possibly happen in it.

That was extremely clever, and not at all intellectually dishonest.  Who cares about context anyway?
 
2014-04-29 01:46:27 PM

Cagey B: Lionel Mandrake: There are many, many good reasons to scrap the death penalty, and very few reasons to have it.

There are absolutely no reasons to have it. Unless you count "because feelings" or "I must stroke my vengeance boner" as reasons, which many in this thread will.


If someone in your family was killed, raped, etc.,how would you react? What penalty should a pedophile or murderer get for hurting someone you love?
 
2014-04-29 01:46:53 PM

TheWhoppah: The only people who get the death penalty on their first offense are mass murderers.  Almost everyone sent to death row has a long list of criminal offenses and the needle is basically a Lifetime Achievement Award for their life of crime.  If four percent of them are innocent of the specific crime for which they are executed chances are they already deserved it ten times over anyhow and the rest of us are better off without them.


So much this!

/I feel worse for animals being put down in animal shelters than these pieces of shait.
 
2014-04-29 01:47:36 PM

Lionel Mandrake: You know, the vast majority of people sent to death row are guilty scumbags that get no sympathy from me.  But I'm not ready to accept any innocents being killed, nor am I willing to see certain people who have better access to/can afford better legal representation to get a lighter sentence than some poor shlub who has to roll the dice with an overworked Public Defender.  And imperfect systems should not impose irreversible punishments.

There are many, many good reasons to scrap the death penalty, and very few reasons to have it.


I'm for the death penalty (obviously with significant reforms), and I agree with everything you wrote.
 
2014-04-29 01:48:12 PM
I still say that life w/o parole is worse than the death penalty...having Bubba ready to rape u daily seems pretty severe
 
2014-04-29 01:50:01 PM
Personally, I'm fine with capital punishment but think life imprisonment outside of psychiatric commitment should be illegal since confinement of that magnitude is both nonsensical in any judicial philosophy advocating punishment to reform and tantamount to torture.

But that aside, the article's doing some hard-core conflating of 'some evidence less than a reasonable doubt but enough to merit a stay of execution for further investigation' and 'innocence'.

People that have their death sentence converted to life are  still convicted of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt standard.  The court's just decided that there's something that merits giving them more time for appeals, or just felt like being merciful that day, or whatever.  They're still guilty.  Though the fact that we apply it that inconsistently actually is kind of an argument against the penalty in itself, kinda one of those things we need to develop consistent, simple rules for or simply not do at all.
 
2014-04-29 01:50:12 PM

HisBoyLeroy: The "innocent " on death row are generally pretty bad people anyway even if they are technically innocent of the convicted crime. You or your neighbors aren't in danger of being falsely convicted, but the DA will sometimes turn a blind eye to exculpery evidence when dealing with a know scumbag. Doesn't bother me one farking bit.


Look, YOU know this, and I know this, but how do you know that there aren't some non-white people on this site?
 
2014-04-29 01:50:43 PM

Capo Del Bandito: Lionel Mandrake: But I'm not ready to accept any innocents being killed, nor am I willing to see certain people who have better access to/can afford better legal representation to get a lighter sentence than some poor shlub who has to roll the dice with an overworked Public Defender.

So you're under the impression you live in a world where there will be no collateral damage, period, ever, no matter what?


No.  I don't know why you think that.  But "oops, you're in jail" is better than "oops, you're dead"
 
2014-04-29 01:50:57 PM

TheWhoppah: The only people who get the death penalty on their first offense are mass murderers.  Almost everyone sent to death row has a long list of criminal offenses and the needle is basically a Lifetime Achievement Award for their life of crime.  If four percent of them are innocent of the specific crime for which they are executed chances are they already deserved it ten times over anyhow and the rest of us are better off without them.


There are so many holes, exclusions, and painting-over done in this post, it's hard to know where to start.  Basically, it boils down to you being ok executing people who innocent of the crime they are convicted of because they probably did something bad in the past that might deserve killin'.

If you're not a troll, you're a terrible human being.  Wait, scratch that.  Either way, you're a terrible human being.
 
2014-04-29 01:51:44 PM

Lee451: If someone in your family was killed, raped, etc.,how would you react? What penalty should a pedophile or murderer get for hurting someone you love?


All you're actually doing is emphasizing the precise reason that victims don't actually have a say in what happens to their perpetrators.  You understand that, right?
 
2014-04-29 01:51:56 PM

Cagey B: There are absolutely no reasons to have it. Unless you count "because feelings" or "I must stroke my vengeance boner" as reasons, which many in this thread will.


Wow.  Not often you'll see someone reduce a husband whose pregnant wife was anally raped (because the pregnancy made vaginal rape difficult) and then stabbed to death to "guy with vengeance boner."
 
2014-04-29 01:51:57 PM

Lee451: Cagey B: Lionel Mandrake: There are many, many good reasons to scrap the death penalty, and very few reasons to have it.

There are absolutely no reasons to have it. Unless you count "because feelings" or "I must stroke my vengeance boner" as reasons, which many in this thread will.

If someone in your family was killed, raped, etc.,how would you react? What penalty should a pedophile or murderer get for hurting someone you love?


Life in prison, no parole.
 
2014-04-29 01:53:08 PM

Lee451: Cagey B: Lionel Mandrake: There are many, many good reasons to scrap the death penalty, and very few reasons to have it.

There are absolutely no reasons to have it. Unless you count "because feelings" or "I must stroke my vengeance boner" as reasons, which many in this thread will.

If someone in your family was killed, raped, etc.,how would you react? What penalty should a pedophile or murderer get for hurting someone you love?


Ah, a representative from the "because feelings" camp. You're totally okay with making law based on feelings, right? Please sign my petition then for the "Whack Lee451 in the Balls with a Cricket Bat Act of 2014", then. Because I feel, deep in my heart, that you're too stupid to be allowed to pollute society with your defective genes, and the only thing that will give me closure is you being bludgeoned into sterility. I'm glad you support making policy this way.
 
2014-04-29 01:53:27 PM

Cagey B: You apparently live in a world where "collateral damage" is acceptable even in cases where the activity causing said damage is pointless. So I hope you don't mind when I burn down your house in order to make room to erect a giant statue of 80s Austrian pop-idol Falco. You wouldn't want to be a hypocrite, I'm sure.


Mmm no, a bit different. Collateral damage while keeping the piece, like in war, is to be expected, If you don't, then you have no real understanding of war/things of that nature. It's a part of life.

But your hyperbole and strawman are adorable.

China White Tea: Hey, way to expand the scope of that guy's comment from the criminal justice system to the entire world and everything that could every possibly happen in it.


Not in the least: I'm saying there will be collateral damage in any instance and if you work with death in any way shape or form be prepared for it. Having the death penalty, for whatever reason it's around, there will ALWAYS be people hit by the debris.

Nice attempt to blow my words out of context yourself, but you missed what I was getting at. Try again.
 
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