Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Bye, bye, Tookie!

A quick side note: when did ESPN and FOX Sports decide poker was a sport worthy of being televised? If you're watching poker on TV, you have way too much free time on your hands.

On to the subject of the day: capital punishment. I strongly support it and I'll address the main objection to it in this post. One objection, recently put forth by conservative/libertarian talk show Tucker Carlson, who I respect,is that the state should not have the power of life and death over an American citizen. This argument, though plausible, is wrong for two reasons. First, the state has a military composed of people whose explicit mission is to kill enemies of the government. If it is morally permissible to kill a Sunni Iraqi terrorist, why is it immoral to kill a domestic terrorist like Tookie Williams or Timothy McVeigh? (There are pacifists who would object to any state-sanctioned killing, but society could not survive on that principle). Second, these oppponents of the death penalty concede that the state has the legal and moral right to imprison a man for the rest of his life if he commits a murder. I do not see the moral distinction between the government executing someone versus jailing him for the rest of his life. Personally, I would rather take a lethal injection than live for 30+ years in prison.

I don't care that Tookie Williams wrote children's books. I don't care that Edward Asner and Susan Sarandon think he should have been spared. The man deserved exactly what he got, a quick death. I have zero remorse over his execution.

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