Saturday, January 24, 2015

"Capital punishment" is murder. Here's why

The reason a State death penalty is murder seems to be lost on some people.

Killing someone who is currently attacking or violating private property is not murder. It is self defense. If self defense fails and the victim is murdered, it is still OK- or wonderful, even- if the attacker is killed at the time and place of the attack by a bystander since the assumption that everyone around is still in mortal danger would be reasonable. If no one happened to be there to kill the attacker at the scene, killing him is then off the table, ethically.

Killing that same person later- when they are no longer an imminent threat- is a revenge murder. I realize a large majority of people think revenge is sometimes OK... but it isn't.

For one thing, if you weren't there, you don't really know what happened. Making a mistake and demanding restitution from someone who turns out to have been innocent is bad enough, but making a mistake that results in death is unforgivable.

Having a government employee do the killing on the victim's (or "society's") behalf changes nothing- unless you believe the propaganda about the State- meaning the individual humans comprising it- being somehow exempt from the ethical rules all humans are subject to.