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Well, this happened in America, and the hypocrisy is that we talk about abortion and a 'culture of life' and yet we engage in war mongering, civilian slaying,chemical weapons use, and firing squads.
I think that the point is also this: we have these moral 'bars' we set that are circumstantial and subject to bias and paradox, where we say this person has this much value, or this other person or victim has less. People in one state deserve to die, people in another get life sentences..We look at children that grow up in gang culture, violence from toddlerhood, and we do nothing about this while we spend millions on appeals and resources to put people to death.
See, we can debate all week about pros and cons of the death penalty, war, morality, and death.Much can be said about these topics, and I won't pitch my bitch here. I think we are in agreement, Polly.
But even a person with no emotional response should be able to see that the resources spent on capital punishment are wasteful and do not constitute a deterrent to crime. Even if one looks only at the merits of what works and what does not without the humanity or moral aspects- it does not make sense.
Do we punish for vengeance, or to deter crime? Do we jail to separate or rehabilitate? Does redemption have any value at all?

What keeps surprising me is that the death penalty is alive and well in exactly one western democracy. Are there any EU countries that still have capital punishment?

It has nothing to do with whether the criminal is really guilty, or whether he or she (though most are hes) deserves to be put to death. It doesn't even make a difference, to me, how humanely they're killed (though I agree that a firing squad death is especially horrific).

Giving the state the power of life and death over an individual is fundamentally wrong, and goes against the very precepts of democracy.

Funny how the most basic right of all -- the right to stay alive -- is even debatable, to any modern state, anywhere. Is the fabric of American society really that fragile? Are they really threatened by barbaric criminals when their legal system permits such barbarism itself?

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