Skip to comments.Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Posted on 06/26/2002 7:36:01 PM PDT by Bowana
Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Cruel and unusual punishment is forbidden under the eighth amendment to the United States constitution. For a victim of murder, it would not be classified as punishment, but being murdered is certainly cruel and unusual. The sentence for such a crime should be no less.
On Thursday, June 20th, the United States Supreme Court ruled that executions of mentally retarded criminals are cruel and unusual punishment violating the eighth amendment. So according to the standard, if a person found guilty of murder can show that they have an IQ under 70, then they will not have to face execution.
Now that's one test that most people will to want to fail.
With this new ruling, a person, who is possibly mentally retarded and commits the cruel and unusual crime of murder, will avoid the death penalty completely. That is how the U.S. Supreme Court views justice.
Another interesting point to this case is the statement of Justice John Paul Stevens, who authored the opinion of the court, and stated that "It is fair to say that a national consensus has developed against it"
Since there are 38 States that have the death penalty, then the national consensus agrees to the use of the death penalty as a deterrent and 20 of those still execute mentally retarded convicted murderers. That is 53% of the States that have the death penalty that execute the mentally retarded and 47% that don't. That is not a national consensus.
Since the last election, the death penalty has come up on several occasions with President Bush's history of allowing over 150 executions while he served as Governor of Texas. An interesting fact that seemed to miss most major news outlets was an act by then Governor Clinton, when he flew back to Arkansas during the 1992 election for an execution.
That execution was of a man named Ricky Ray Rector who was convicted of killing two people in Arkansas. One person that he killed was the result of an argument over two dollars.
Gloria Rubac, an anti-death penalty activist, wrote "In 1992 when Clinton was running for president, he made a point of leaving the campaign trail to go back to Arkansas for an execution, sending a strong message to the American people that he was in full support of the death penalty. The victim was a mentally retarded man named Ricky Ray Rector"
Well there it is, "The victim was a mentally retarded man named Ricky Ray Rector" The Victim? Wait a minute; let's try The Criminal, The Murderer, The Cold Blooded Killer, but not "the victim"
It's the same old liberal claptrap calling guilty criminals victims. Ms. Rubac goes on and on about the horror of the death penalty and the conditions of prisons, but what you won't find is one word about the real victims. Not one word about the two people that Ricky Ray Rector killed. Not one word.
What she didn't say was that Rector killed a doorman at a dance over two dollars, and when a police officer went to Rector's house to arrest him, Rector shot and killed the officer in cold blood.
It was reported that before Ricky Ray Rector's execution, he took his desert and put it under his bed and said, "I'm going to eat it after my execution," Would Rector have been considered mentally retarded? Yes, but you see he wasn't when he committed his crime, his retardation was the result of a gunshot to the head, a self-inflicted gunshot.
I am not in favor of the death penalty in every murder case but when the evidence is overwhelming, the brutality is evident, and it is beyond a shadow of a doubt, then the death penalty is a deterrent that is 100% effective.
I have read the anti-death penalty propaganda and how many innocent people have been found innocent after being on death row. Well the system worked, and eventually these people were cleared. Ms. Rubac states in her article that the death penalty is used against innocent people.
Name One? That is all that I ask, name one?
The only case that I have ever heard of is the Sacco and Vanzetti Case. After looking into the story, it appears that they may not have been so innocent after all. I checked out the Sacco and Vanzetti Case and though the trial may have been questionable the results may not have been.
According to Encyclopedia.com, "new ballistics tests conducted with modern equipment in 1961 seemed to prove conclusively that the pistol found on Sacco had been used to murder the guard." So if Sacco did it and no one has ever found any more proof, I'd say Vanzetti is guilty by association and justice was served.
I have read many stories where friends or family members have proclaimed the innocence of someone in prison. They write letters, make phone calls, and sometimes continue the battle to prove the person's innocence for years and years, until finally something breaks and the truth comes out.
If just one innocent person was executed, it seems that there would be at least a couple people somewhere that would cry out to clear the name of the innocent person. With all of these "Victims" being executed, isn't it funny that we never hear of anyone crying out that the execution was an injustice and that an innocent person had been executed?
All I can say is that the recidivism rate for murderers who receive the death penalty is zero and that is my side of the story.
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Who would listen? Who would finance such a thing? What court would care?
There have been cases where people just continued to write letters and finally found someone to listen.
I didn't say a court had to listen. Anyone, a politician, a reporter, or yes maybe even a judge or a lawyer.
If a friend of yours was wrongly accused and convicted, would you just let them rot in jail?
What if a friend of yours was executed for a murder that you know they didn't commit, would you just forget about it?
That is my point!
If an innocent person was executed, I don't believe friends would remain quiet, if they did what kind of friends were they?
What a completely uneducated thing to say!
Please name one murderer who was put to death that murdered again?
Now that is what I call a deterrent!
Do you know how many lifers have escaped to kill again?
One is TOO MANY!