Third Party & Independents Archives

Death Sentence for Rape

Louisiana’s Supreme Court ruled last Tuesday that a man may be executed for raping an 8-year-old girl, possibly setting the stage for the United States Supreme Court to determine at a nationwide level if capital punishment is a fair sentence for the crime of raping a child.

In 1974, a gentlemanly bloke named Erlich Anthony Coker, who was serving a number of sentences for murder, rape, kidnapping, and assault, escaped from prison. During his short period of freedom he broke into a Georgia couple's home, raped the woman and stole their car. For the rape charge the Georgia courts sentenced him to death.

In 1977 the Supreme Court by a vote of 7-2 overturned the "grossly disproportionate" sentence in Coker v. Georgia saying that the non-homicidal rape of an adult woman does not warrant our nation's highest form of punishment.

This case involving the 8-year-old girl could give the current Supreme Court the opportunity to once again decide the applicability of capital punishment to rape. It's possible that the court will overturn Coker entirely and allow the states to decide which crimes warrant the death penalty, but I believe if this case reaches the Supreme Court the justices will expand Coker to include rapes against minors.

Lately, Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy has most often aligned with the conservatives to form 5-4 majorities, the most recent being Tuesday’s Ledbetter decision that still has Ruth Bader Ginsburg fuming.

But Justice Kennedy is very leery when it comes to capital punishment and wound up siding with the liberals in two very big 5-4 decisions that barred the use of capital punishment on minors and the mentally retarded. I would not be surprised if we saw another 5-4 decision with him joining the liberals barring capital punishment on offenders guilty of non-homicidal rape.

As an opponent of capital punishment I don't like the idea of capital punishment being expanded to include lesser crimes, and to avoid calling rape a "lesser crime" I'll say I'd hate to see it applied to, say, armed robbery. Or grand theft auto. Or tax fraud.

But nevertheless capital punishment is a debate for the states to have. The Constitution clearly invites the use of the death penalty via the Fifth Amendment so let the states decide how it should be used.

Posted by Scottie at May 31, 2007 2:10 PM
Comments
Comment #221789

I agree it should be a state issue..theres a lot of things that should be deemed as state issues But i also realize that a child raped so young… is going to have a hard life with a lot of issues and scars. Say the guy would get 30 years in prison.. the child would be 38 and still pretty young.. but most likely had a hard life that the child didn’t ask for or could be dead already from dealing with the issues that the rape caused.. where this guy walks out his debt to society “paid in full” while the child may need a lifetime of counciling….

Posted by: RHancheck at May 31, 2007 2:44 PM
Comment #221792

This is an interesting one. In many states, rapists get away with very short sentences - and the crime itself is regarded as hard to prosecute, on the whole.

For instance, here in Colorado the mandatory sentencing regulations provide that importation of an illegal substance into the state (quantity unspecified) will result in jail time of eight to forty-eight years.

Meanwhile, most rapists spend around two years in a Colorado jail (and that is ‘subject to mitigating factors’, which is a hell of a statement).

Personally I would like to see rapists spend a lot more time in jail. Twenty years for a first offence, minimum, would seem somewhat more in line with this violent crime.

As for death - well, I’m opposed to the death penalty. Not because I don’t think it’s appropriate for murderers, but because of the risk of the innocent being killed for someone else’s crime.

That being said, I have two children. And heaven help the rapist who touched my kids - that individual should pray that the state finds them first. (Yes, I see the double standard here.)

Posted by: Jon Rice at May 31, 2007 4:21 PM
Comment #221799

Would a public raping of the criminal satisfy your need for retribution? Just a thought. It’s a very evocative and emotional issue.

Posted by: barneygoogle at May 31, 2007 4:55 PM
Comment #221802

Maybe a castration on pay-per-view none of that chemical stuff either. But regardless I would support a chemical castration of DNA proven cases, since tying them to a tree in the swamp is not going to be an option

Posted by: RHancheck at May 31, 2007 5:10 PM
Comment #221805

I agree that this should be a state issue. And on the subject of the death penalty, did you see where China’s going to execute their FDA guy over the tainted pet food? Now that’s accountability. Whatever happened to our FDA guy over the mad cow outbreak. Didn’t Bush give him the Medal of Freedom?

Posted by: American Pundit at May 31, 2007 5:36 PM
Comment #221808

LOL, Ap, you pinko commie. Just kidding.

Posted by: barneygoogle at May 31, 2007 5:43 PM
Comment #221809

No government should be involved in the execution of its own citizens after the crime fact. It is pure and simple hypocrisy for the state to say on the one hand, premeditated murder of a sentient human being is wrong, and then except the government from that very law.

The law is supposed to be equally applied to all. That was the intent of the founding fathers, regardless of wealth, power, or social status. To the extent we depart from the founding father’s wisdom on this, we subject our society to a plethora of injustices and legal inequalities that imperil social order and respect for the law.

Posted by: David R. Remer at May 31, 2007 5:44 PM
Comment #221810

Jon:

In many states, rapists get away with very short sentences - and the crime itself is regarded as hard to prosecute, on the whole.

For instance, here in Colorado the mandatory sentencing regulations provide that importation of an illegal substance into the state (quantity unspecified) will result in jail time of eight to forty-eight years.

Meanwhile, most rapists spend around two years in a Colorado jail (and that is ‘subject to mitigating factors’, which is a hell of a statement).

I think this may say a lot about America’s societal view of women (and children) in general. That someone having an illegal drug should serve a long sentence while a violent, perverted, insane criminal who rapes people gets off with a short sentence. How else to account for it?

As for death - well, I’m opposed to the death penalty.

Me too, but in my view the death penalty is a reflection of an immoral society — one that obviously cares more about dishing out punishments than it does about trying to prevent such crimes in the first place. And the way to prevent more violent crimes is to have an affordable, effective mental health care system that is accessible to all Americans.

Posted by: Adrienne at May 31, 2007 6:01 PM
Comment #221812

David, the founding fathers hung traitors. How does this square with your version of the Constitution? I don’t think the Constitution spoke to the death penalty, except that it should not be cruel or unusual.

Posted by: barneygoogle at May 31, 2007 6:27 PM
Comment #221813

Adrienne,

While in part I agree with you, I have to question your vision of Nirvana. If we all had psycho analysis and sat around a fire singing cum by ya, chanting a mantra, while sitting in the lotus position, there would still be rapists and murderers.

Man by nature is violent. Some men(women) are anti social. It is a matter of statistics that some will fall at the extrema of the bell curve.

As much as we want the world to be filled with daiseys and nice guys, there will always be the need to segregate the chaff and pull the weeds. Sometimes, I think the eath penalty may be the most humane way of dealing with some of these people, though I am, too, torn by the moral dilema.

Posted by: barneygoogle at May 31, 2007 6:38 PM
Comment #221815

barneygoogle, NOR unequally applied. Which of course it is, as even a cursory review of the differences from state to state will reveal. The Founding Fathers were very clear on this subject, that the laws must be equally applied to all, regardless of race, religion, creed, socioeconmic status, or political status.

Posted by: David R. Remer at May 31, 2007 6:48 PM
Comment #221818

Adrienne

“I think this may say a lot about America’s societal view of women (and children) in general. That someone having an illegal drug should serve a long sentence while a violent, perverted, insane criminal who rapes people gets off with a short sentence. How else to account for it?”


no doubt the gov’t seems to be more interested in meddling in peoples day to day lives.

these people get off with light sentences IMO because of those who are more interested in feeling sorry for these preditors, and the bad childhood they might have suffered, instead of protecting the rights of the victims, and preventing these clowns from carrying out a repeat performances.


“And the way to prevent more violent crimes is to have an affordable, effective mental health care system that is accessible to all Americans.”


these guys aren’t going to go in and get treatment. thier motivation to do these types of things is stronger than thier sense of right and wrong, or they wouldn’t do them in the first place. universal mental healthcare won’t solve a thing. it will only become another black hole for tax money.


barneygoogle


“As much as we want the world to be filled with daiseys and nice guys, there will always be the need to segregate the chaff and pull the weeds. Sometimes,”


i can’t argue with that. seems the weeds keep getting thicker, and no one has the intestinal fortitude any more to go out and pull them.

Posted by: dbs at May 31, 2007 7:44 PM
Comment #221819

AP


“Whatever happened to our FDA guy over the mad cow outbreak. Didn’t Bush give him the Medal of Freedom?”

just couldn’t resist could ya ? should we execute him ? i mean the FDA guy not bush, i think i could guess your answer to that.

Posted by: dbs at May 31, 2007 7:50 PM
Comment #221822

Barney:
“If we all had psycho analysis and sat around a fire singing cum by ya, chanting a mantra, while sitting in the lotus position, there would still be rapists and murderers.”

Oh, cut the derogatory crap. I was talking about how if we had a mental health system that was affordable, effective and accessible to all Americans we might have more parents taking their kids to get help from the very first signs of mental disturbance or imbalance they see — which may well help to keep them from becoming rapists and murderers, or becoming one of those wackos who just barely manage to keep the lid on for most of their lives before going postal at some point.

Posted by: Adrienne at May 31, 2007 8:05 PM
Comment #221829

Adrienne,

Sorry if reality is derogatory to you. I don’t disagree that we need better access to mental health care. I just don’t agree big government is the solution. Opening up the insurance/medical care industry to a real national free market instead of the licensed/state by state/mess it is today may be a start. The media and knights of truth, justice and the American way decried the instituions of the fifities. They destroyed that system and left us with nothing. There are societal stigmas associated with mental illness that a governmental agency won’t fix.

I just don’t think it will change the nature of man.

My lid fits nicely, and I quit the post office when the voices told me to, thanks.

Posted by: barneygoogle at May 31, 2007 9:37 PM
Comment #221831

“Meanwhile, most rapists spend around two years in a Colorado jail (and that is ‘subject to mitigating factors’, which is a hell of a statement).”

Jon, I believe that statement is a bit misleading. Perhaps you should have used the phrase “sex offenders” in place of “rapists”. There is a difference in many cases which would explain the “mitigating factors”. Not all child victims get raped. Most are actually victims of improper forced touching (of and by the perpetrator) and it is usually not something that happened “just once”. The child usually knows the offender and this makes a court trial very difficult for all parties involved. Most cases are resolved through plea bargaining which explains the shorter prison sentences given to the offenders. But there is always a lengthy period of supervised parole or probation following completion of the prison sentence, not to mention lifetime registration and community notification.

Rape is a horrible, violent crime, regardless of the victim’s age and I think the facts would bear out that the rapist actually is treated much more harshly by the prosecutors (and rightfully so).

As for the death penalty, while I believe it should be up to the individual states to decide whether to have one or not, it should be left to the Supreme Court or Congress to determine on a national level which crimes should be subject to the penalty.

Posted by: Tim in NY at May 31, 2007 10:05 PM
Comment #221835

David,

O.K. I get your point. I read over that part of your post, but did not assimilate it.

Although, I’m not convinced that they’d see our justice system as distinctly different from theirs. Wealth and status has always provided accomodation to that class. Their were no poor indentured servants, or slaves in office or afforded even the right to vote, I believe.

Posted by: barneygoogle at May 31, 2007 10:17 PM
Comment #221843
should we execute him ? i mean the FDA guy not bush

That’s a little extreme, I think, but it’s interesting to see some accountability somewhere. We’ve had so little of here over the last 6-7 years that I almost forgot what it looks like.

BTW, and back on this subject, I don’t have a problem with the death penalty. Some people really do need to be put down like mad dogs. Milosovic and Saddam and his two sons are good examples.

Posted by: American Pundit at May 31, 2007 10:59 PM
Comment #221844

AP,

I’m not so sure it is extreme, considering the deaths in Central America and China he facilitated. In Japan they just commit sopuko ( the modern version)

Posted by: barneygoogle at May 31, 2007 11:07 PM
Comment #221848

Barney:
“Sorry if reality is derogatory to you.”

“If we all had psycho analysis and sat around a fire singing cum by ya, chanting a mantra, while sitting in the lotus position,”

That isn’t reality for me Barney, what that is to me is a derogatory way to talk down to liberals by assuming we’re all a bunch of drugged-out Flower Children and Decrepit New Agers, and a great many of us Liberals are damn sick and tired of it.
Now maybe it’s just that you’re just showing your own advanced age here by trying to pigeon hole all of us, but it happens to be extremely obnoxious.

“I don’t disagree that we need better access to mental health care.”

Oh, so then you were just using your comments as a way to take a sarcastic swipe at a random liberal? Unfortunately, treating us like we’re all from the same commune sharing the same bong and macrame bean bag couch is a boring, worn-out cliche often employed by hard-core rightwingers. You should really try being a bit more creative and develop a brand new stereotype — one that hasn’t been dragged out ad nauseum for the past forty years.

I just don’t agree big government is the solution.”

Of course not, thus far you’ve done nothing but sing the praises of the Libertarian viewpoint. Therefore, may we all assume that government is never the answer, and hard-hearted, do-it-yourself anarchy and chaos is fine way to run American government, and the only way to promote a peaceful and productive society?

“Opening up the insurance/medical care industry to a real national free market instead of the licensed/state by state/mess it is today may be a start.”

Personally, I think we’ve seen quite enough of what the “free market” can do for us when it comes to the insurance/medical care industry — and it’s far too expensive and isn’t working for way too many Americans.

“There are societal stigmas associated with mental illness that a governmental agency won’t fix.”

You’re describing a societal stigma that is almost as ridiculously outdated as your worn-out liberal stereotype. Treatments for mental illness have come a long way, and a government by and for the people should be able to find a way make those advances accessible and affordable to everyone who displays violent and uncontrolled tendencies — not just be reserved for those whose families can spare the cash for their kid to get to a shrink.

“I just don’t think it will change the nature of man.”

Claiming that “man’s nature is violent” is nothing but an excuse for allowing our culture to be an overly violent one. I don’t buy that excuse.
Besides, people with very serious mental imbalances and illnesses can be helped enormously by a undergoing psychiatric evaluation and taking the right meds. Have you ever known or met someone who suffers from schizophrenia? I once worked with a guy who had it, and truthfully, I would never have known had he not admitted this to me one day.

I think that every American can and should be helped who needs it, because a lot of the time people who suffer from such things can live relatively normal and productive lives if they have a way to get the proper care.

“My lid fits nicely, and I quit the post office when the voices told me to, thanks.”

That’s great Barney, but just to be on the safe side, it’s probably a good idea to stay on the meds. If you do, I promise never to blog wearing my tie-dye caftan and love beads again. ;^/

Posted by: Adrienne at June 1, 2007 12:08 AM
Comment #221850
In Japan they just commit sopuko

Sure. Like the agricultural minister just did. If only American politicians would do “the right thing” when caught.

Hey! Isn’t that how Mr. Smith Goes to Washington ends?

Posted by: American Pundit at June 1, 2007 12:50 AM
Comment #221855

No AP, it ended in Black and White, just as it started. Great message on ideals but, real short on prescriptive practice to prevent the corruption of government by tenured politicians beholding to the wealthy special interests, in this highly complex and sophisticated experimental system America created for itself.

Posted by: David R. Remer at June 1, 2007 1:03 AM
Comment #221856

Barney, of course people who harm others should be held accountable, but it’s not true that someone who’s disturbed can’t be helped. People with schizophrenia and similar mental illness truly are delustional, yet can be helped enormously with proper treatment. I think what you really mean rather are people like psychopaths, usually very sane people who don’t have a conscience and really do like to manipulate and sometimes hurt others. Even regarding sex offenders, things like pedophilia is a mental illness. While of course their actions if they choose to harm children are inexcusable, they didn’t choose to be afflicted with it and most are nonviolent. Again, I’m not sticking up for anyone’s actions, I just don’t agree that we shouldn’t look into was to prevent crime, rather than just punish it after the victim is already hurt.

Adrienne, good point.
I think the biggest conservative excuse of all time may be to say the road to hell is paved with good intentions (only wish they applied it to Bush’s idea to bring “freedom” to Iraq).

Posted by: thom at June 1, 2007 1:11 AM
Comment #221870

Adrienne,

I love your fire and passion. While my statements are intended to be somewhat sardonic, they are none the less true. I never accused any liberal of sharing a bong…that’s your confession. I always thought they had their own.

I may be old and obnoxious, but I’m right. Government hasn’t worked. The reason we have managed care that has created spiraling healthcare costs is directly because the government legislated an advantage for HMO’s in the 70’s that tied healthcare to employers and removed the patients in the process.

We do not have a free market in Healthcare. Try to find out what a proceedure costs in competing hospitals, if you think we do. You can’t. The government restricts healthcare and divorces it from the patients, creating horrific distortions.

I’m not saying government shouldn’t help the people it serves. It does so by having a functioning judicial system and prosecuting wrongdoers, and providng contractual stability. It can provide aids (not money) to commerce, rather than artificially restricting them.

As much as you may want to believe doctors can cure all our ills, which culture is it, exactly that is free from violence? When and where did this culture exist?

Posted by: barneygoogle at June 1, 2007 9:25 AM
Comment #221881

thom

” Even regarding sex offenders, things like pedophilia is a mental illness.”


who decides what is a mental illness and what is not ? if you were to consider society judges normal behavior as sex between a man and a woman, then is homosexuality a mental illness ? is having sex with animals a mental illness ? where does pedophilia fit in ? before you go off on me i have nothing against homosexuals, and think pedophiles are disgusting, but i feel it’s a relevant question. who decides what is just who someone is, and is not a mental defect to be treated, and what is ? i believe there are people who are just bad period, and all the treatment in the world will not change them. once again who gets to make this call ? acording to the logic of some a homosexual could also be treated and made normal.

Posted by: dbs at June 1, 2007 11:50 AM
Comment #221886

adrienne

“That isn’t reality for me Barney, what that is to me is a derogatory way to talk down to liberals by assuming we’re all a bunch of drugged-out Flower Children and Decrepit New Agers, and a great many of us Liberals are damn sick and tired of it.”


this is the same way you treat those on this site who disagree with you. little red white and blue violens comes to mind. if you want respect from others you need to show them the same courtesy. address the comment without trying to insult an entire group of people. just an observation on my part. no offense intended here.

Posted by: dbs at June 1, 2007 12:40 PM
Comment #221920

What concerns me the most about this is not the morality of the death penalty, but rather the stupidity of some of our laws. For example “rape” and “molestation” laws are routinely applied to minors who have sex with one another.

A 17 year old having consensual sex with a 15 year old is not rape or molestation but can be successfully prosecuted as such. I remember reading about a case (yes the mythical case that I can’t provide a link to) not too long ago about two 13 (or was it 14) year olds who had consensual sex and were prosecuted as both simultaneous victims and aggressors and are now “sex offenders.” I know this gets a little off-topic, but until our laws straightened out, I wouldn’t want to allow executions for this, even if the guy did deserve it in this circumstance.

Posted by: Peter at June 1, 2007 8:10 PM
Comment #221924

The subject of child rape is a very touchy one for me as one of my daughters was raped when she was 8 years old. My first instinct whenever the subject comes up is kill the bastard post haste and be done with him.
The question is always the same. Should someone that rapes a child be executed? And I say yes. When you stop to consider what being raped does to a child I don’t know how anyone would want to let the rapist live and possibly rape another child.
I don’t know if my daughter is an exception or not. She’s now 33 and married to a man that loves her more than anything in the world. She has 4 very sweet and well behaved youngins. She’s an RN and works in the Pediatric Ward in the hospital. On the outside she seems to be very normal and that she has coped very well with her trauma. But those that know her can still see the scars from being raped.
She’s not very trusting of men in general. Specially men she knows but not very well. She a little over protective of her kids. She doesn’t like going to parks with play grounds.
I can’t even begin to describe the hell she went through for 5 years. No child should have to go through what she did.
In the first year she attempted suicide 3 times. She withdrew in herself and wouldn’t hardly talk to anyone. She was very difficult for her brother and sisters to get along with for around 2 years. For about two years I couldn’t even be alone in the same room with her. She wouldn’t let hug her for 3 years. And all the time she wanted me to hold her and tell her everything was going to be OK. And when she did finally let me hug her she was very uncomfortable with it for a while. She had nightmares for 5 years about the asshole that raped her doing it again. She had problems in school. She was in counseling until she was 16.
How can y’all say that someone that causes a child to go through all that deserves to live?
But on the other hand there is some things that could be worse than death. Like maybe making them live the rest of their miserable lives in prison where they will be treated like the scum they are.

Posted by: Ron Brown at June 1, 2007 8:26 PM
Comment #221930

ron


“But on the other hand there is some things that could be worse than death. Like maybe making them live the rest of their miserable lives in prison where they will be treated like the scum they are.”

good point, because actually a prison sentence is usually a death sentence in its self for a child molester. they don’t last long in prison, so long as they are placed in general population. problem solved.

BTW my oldest daughter was grabbed and groped on the way home from school when she was @ 14. i never did find that guy, although we drove around on many occasions looking for him. would have liked to have touched him, although not quite the same way he touched my daughter. i’m glad to hear yours is ok. mines doing fine too, and i have a grandson now, and a son in law who’s a martial arts trainer in the marine corps.

Posted by: dbs at June 1, 2007 8:56 PM
Comment #221934

dbs
They got the guy that raped my daughter. It was a neighbor. And he doesn’t know how lucky he is the police got to him first.
The judge let him off with a slap on the wrist because of ‘mitigating’ circumstances. It seems the judge thought that my daughter was to blame because she was wearing shorts.
The scumbag only served two years and raped a 7 yearold girl within 1 month of being released. Only this time it was winter and 20 degrees outside. I doubt that little girl was wearing shorts.

Posted by: Ron Brown at June 1, 2007 9:10 PM
Comment #221938

Maybe prison would be worse than death if the prisons were like the prisons say in China, Russia, Iran, Syria or countries like that.

Posted by: KAP at June 1, 2007 9:26 PM
Comment #221947

Ron,

I have three daughters and I can well imagine what you and she —your whole family— have gone through. Please accept my heartfelt sympathies as a father for what you’ve been through. I shudder to think… I can only try to protect my girls a little more.

There is something wrong when anyone who has raped a child is allowed, for whatever reason, out of prison to rape again. There is absolutely no excuse for that. None whatsoever. And it should be considered judicial malpractice for such a thing to happen. I think it may be apparent that I feel very strongly about this issue.

Personally, I don’t think that child rapists should go to jail. They should be tortured, yes tortured (Al Qaeda style, not Gitmo) and then killed in the most painful manner possible. Maybe I am wrong. Maybe I have not matured enough to deal with such a event in a peaceful manner… but if anything were to ever happen to one of my daughters and the state would not […redacted for my own protection…]

Yes, I realize this statement would be used in a court against me if such a situation were to ever actually happen, but… why— why! in God’s name would any decent… hell… I better stop typing.

This is one issue that is clearcut. Rape a child, you die. End of story. You cut the cancer out. You don’t cultivate it. You don’t keep it alive to spread and reproduce. You save society by mercifully ending the life of those who have no conscience and no apparent humanity to be able to discern that such an act is crossing a line society will not tolerate. But maybe that is the real problem here. Society does seem to tolerate it.

Posted by: eric simonson at June 1, 2007 10:49 PM
Comment #221954

Barney:
“I love your fire and passion.”

Thanks very much. I’m glad you’re able to appreciate it. My debating style can be an acquired taste for some, or it can also anger, as dbs has just demonstrated.

“We do not have a free market in Healthcare.”
“The government restricts healthcare and divorces it from the patients, creating horrific distortions.”

I read something written by Bill Scher a little while ago that I agreed with on the TomPaine.com website, and I’d like to share it with you:

Universal Coverage For The Not-Poor

I think he makes a lot of good points in that piece.

“As much as you may want to believe doctors can cure all our ills,”

Not all our ills, but many.

“which culture is it, exactly that is free from violence?”

None, and I never meant to suggest that I thought America could ever be entirely free from violence. That being said, clearly some cultures are better at trying to minimize violence and promote peace than others. America is not doing so well with either of those, and I think we can and should try to do better.
Btw, just yesterday I was reading an article in the LA Times related to this issue that I thought very interesting. Here is the link and a quote:

America ranks low in ‘Peace Index’

The United States is among the least peaceful nations in the world, ranking 96th between Yemen and Iran, according to an index of 121 countries.


dbs:
“this is the same way you treat those on this site who disagree with you. little red white and blue violens comes to mind.”

Oh, I didn’t realize that miniature violin playing was actually a known stereotype amongst Republicans the way that the Hippie/New Age stereotype is with Liberals. The thought of tiny violins just jumped into my head after reading umpteen posts from the right that tried to conflate the true bravery and sacrifices made by America’s soldiers with the ideas that all our wars are about freedom, and that our staying to fight in Iraq for no apparent reason other than because Bushco wants them there was a noble and wonderful thing.

“if you want respect from others you need to show them the same courtesy.”

The question is, do I really believe that the same folks (from Dick Cheney, to Karl Rove, right on down to many of the rightwingers in this blog) who have called people like me a traitor and a terrorist sympathizer simply because I’ve been against the Iraq war from the beginning, are even expecting to be shown courtesy and respect? The way I see it, the moment we started hearing that Democrats were “the Al Qaeda party of choice” was the moment that the gloves had to come off because courtesy in our political discourse had been well and truly swiftboated right out of existence.

“address the comment without trying to insult an entire group of people.”

I was addressing my tiny violin comment to numerous posts that all happened to be playing an identical tune. Besides, personal insults are a violation of the Watchblog rules of participation, so I figured that engaging in anything else would have been quite out of line.

“just an observation on my part. no offense intended here.”

Likewise.

Speaking of soldiers, freedom, and being disrespected for taking an anti-Iraq war stance, you should check out this Marine’s story:
‘Anti-war’ Iraq veteran fights military over war protests

Posted by: Adrienne at June 2, 2007 12:11 AM
Comment #221955

Ron, terrible story. My deepest sympathy for your daughter, and you, and your whole family.
I agree that rapists should be locked up in jail permanently, with no chance of parole, ever.

Posted by: Adrienne at June 2, 2007 12:18 AM
Comment #221960

dbs, my link didn’t work. Here it is again:
‘Anti-war’ Iraq veteran fights military over war protests

Posted by: Adrienne at June 2, 2007 12:47 AM
Comment #221983

Ron, my sympathies as well. I would feel similarly to you and Eric on this subject. A few years back some punk gangbangers raped and killed two teenaged girls in my community.

The girls were returning home from the movies and took a short cut through an area of some railroad tracks. One of the girls could have escaped, but would not leave her friend. The area was turned into a park and two benches facing each other were dedicated to the friends. I sometimes ride my bike through that park and have sat on the benches, To this day, it brings tears to my eyes.

The punks were teens and short 20 something snarling weasels. The father of one of the girls was a 6’6” hulk of a man. Justice would have been to give the father a baseball bat, or even just his bare hands and some alone time with those scumbags.

I know it would have satisfied, to some degree, my anger. As I recall, a couple of them got the death penalty.

Posted by: barneygoogle at June 2, 2007 10:57 AM
Comment #221985

Adrienne,

I’d be very wary of any group that has vested interest in the current healthcare debacle when looking for advice.

That said, it doesn’t seem like they said much except the correct thinking that market forces are the cure.

The article misses the point when it delves off into the problems of the non-market current healthcare system.

The notion of cherry picking healthy people can be avoided by creating large groups with large buying power. Then the sick will not weigh the group down and the providers will have no say in the matter, if they want to be in business. We may need to look at this the way we look at other non-discriminatory practices. We don’t accept ageism, sexism, or racism. Perhaps in healthcare we need to look at healthism. I don’t think these ideas are entirely similar, as lifstyle can affect health. But some disease is inevitable with genetics and age, and shear circumstance.

Posted by: barneygoogle at June 2, 2007 11:12 AM
Comment #221994

“or it can also anger, as dbs has just demonstrated.”


no actualy i’m not angry at all. i find your dry whit and quirky sense of humor quite entertaining. you’ve had me laughing out loud on many occassions, even though i generally don’t see eye to eye with you on many issues.


“Oh, I didn’t realize that miniature violin playing was actually a known stereotype amongst Republicans the way that the Hippie/New Age stereotype is with Liberals. The thought of tiny violins just jumped into my head after reading umpteen posts from the right that tried to conflate the true bravery and sacrifices made by America’s soldiers”


i think my main point was that this insult was directed at a group of people who disagree with you. your responses are in my opinion generally well written and seemed to be backed up, just sometimes a little on the hostile side.


“right on down to many of the rightwingers in this blog) who have called people like me a traitor and a terrorist “


i don’t think i’ve ever said anything like that nor did barney for that matter. those that have shouldn’t be taken seriously anyway. from my experience allowing others to get you angry is conterproductive ( never let em see ya sweat so to speak ).


BTW i don’t nessesarily have a problem with macrame bean bag couches, or bongs for that matter. CHEERS ! ;.)

Posted by: dbs at June 2, 2007 12:56 PM
Comment #221996

adrienne


“Kokesh wore his Marine fatigues with his name, rank and Marine Corps insignia patches removed. The military told Kokesh that wearing the uniform violated Defense Department regulations”

it will be interesting to see how this one plays out, as he is on active reserve he is still beholden to rules of conduct, such as not wearing uniforms to political events, with the patches removed that might be a wobbler. i know the marine corp is very strict when it comes to wearing of uniforms period. they are not allowed to wear camo. in public, or when traveling, they may wear a dress uniform though. they cannot wear thier lids indoors, at any time. this will be interesting. if this is politically motivated to stop him from protesting as an individual, it’s deffinitly a crock.

Posted by: dbs at June 2, 2007 1:11 PM
Comment #222017

KAP,
I think they should be. Prison should be such an awful experience that NO ONE would want to go back.

eric,
Thanks
I would love to see a law requiring ALL child rapist be put to death. NO OPTIONS. But I doubt we’ll see it any time soon. Folks seem to think that there’s something of social redeeming value in these bastards.
Fact is I doubt if they are even human.
Of course they could put the bastards in a room and let the parents of the child have at him. How many ya reckon would live to see the sun go down? I know of one that sure as hell never would’ve had the chance to rape another little girl.
Your right, it was very hard on the family. Not only my wife and me having to watch the hell our little girl was going through and not being able to do anything to make it go away, but on the other kids. I avoided talking about that because I wanted to put the emphasis on what my daughter went through as the victim and not the effects it had on the rest of the family. But it wasn’t easy for any of us.
Specially my son who was 11 at the time. He’s always thought that as the oldest it’s his job to look after and protect his sisters. He was blaming himself for his sister being raped because he was at the playground with her and didn’t stop it from happening. He’d gone over to the ball field with another boy and didn’t know anything was wrong until he couldn’t find her.
Sometimes it I get the idea he still hasn’t forgiven himself for it.
Thing is he was the only one of the kids that could get near her during that time. And when she had the nightmares she’d go to his room to sleep.

Adrienne, barneygoogle
Thanks.
I believe it’s a miracle that my daughter is doing as well as she is. I also believe that the experience, as bad as it was, brought the whole family a lot closer than it was before. And it was close then.


Posted by: Ron Brown at June 2, 2007 4:56 PM
Comment #222033

Ron:
“I believe it’s a miracle that my daughter is doing as well as she is. I also believe that the experience, as bad as it was, brought the whole family a lot closer than it was before. And it was close then.”

Good to hear, Ron. The light of love sure has a way of beating back the darkness in this life.

Barney:
“I’d be very wary of any group that has vested interest in the current healthcare debacle when looking for advice.

That said, it doesn’t seem like they said much except the correct thinking that market forces are the cure.”

I guess you don’t see the irony in these statements, Barney?
Who could have more of a vested interest than the insurance companies and healthcare providers that comprise the free market that you think will somehow find a way to solve the existing problems?
I think it’s clear that we need the government playing a strong role in making sure that the best interests of our citizens will be served when it comes to the entire healthcare industry.

dbs:
“no actualy i’m not angry at all. i find your dry whit and quirky sense of humor quite entertaining. you’ve had me laughing out loud on many occassions,”

Glad to hear it, and thanks.

“i think my main point was that this insult was directed at a group of people who disagree with you. your responses are in my opinion generally well written and seemed to be backed up, just sometimes a little on the hostile side.”

Well, I didn’t used to be quite so hostile, and it isn’t my preferred state of mind. But when I’m talking politics, I now realize I’m always combating the Fox News/Karl Rove slime machine that’s been working overtime to discredit and lie about everyone on the left for many years, so I’ve felt the need to state things a bit more strongly and bluntly than I used to.

“from my experience allowing others to get you angry is conterproductive”

On the other hand, acting tolerant and passive in the face of lies, smears and carefully crafted propaganda makes one look weak, consenting and boringly bland — so it’s bit of a balancing act. No doubt I’m not always perfectly steady when trying to make others see that many on the left are tired of being treated like a doormat that the right can wipe their feet on, but it’s still better being than staying silent-but-resentful.

( never let em see ya sweat so to speak ).”

Who is sweating? When I’m in the right frame of mind, I can toss off zingers with the best of your zinger-tossers. :^)

re: anti-war Marine Sgt.
“if this is politically motivated to stop him from protesting as an individual, it’s deffinitly a crock.”

The fact that they’re thinking of taking away his honorable discharge to replace it with a less than honorable discharge due to the fact that he decided to exercise his right of free speech, is the thing that really gets me about that story.

Posted by: Adrienne at June 2, 2007 8:11 PM
Comment #222062

Let’s see, death penalty for a child molester. What penalty then would be appropriate for crippling an innocent underage person with a firearm? What would be appropriate for the likes of Enron heads or Savings and Loan thieves who stole 100’s of millions from hard working parents trying to provide for their children?

Is selling drugs to minors which can be just as devastating to a young person’s entire life, less deserving of the death penalty if it is appropriate for a molester? How about a person who sells a weapon to a juvenile? How about the Coyote who takes money from illegal aliens to bring them here into a prostitution ring?

And should we not then also convict and put to death teachers who fail their students, scarring and diminishing that student’s potential for the rest of their life? Oh, and let us not forget those who publicly state that our government is not acting legally and should be impeached or overthrown at the polls. Treason afterall, does carry a death sentence. SDS, Black Panther, Aryan Nation, Grandmothers against the Iraq War all incite a lack of support for our government officials. Should they not all be put to death as well? Afterall, children depend on those politicians for the shape of their futures in uncountable ways.

If my daughter were raped and murdered, I would want the responsible person to be dead as well. But, I would not want the rest of my children to have to grow up afraid for their lives at the hands of politicians who have no belief in redemption, rehabilitation, or second chances. That would sure help bring a future in which my children or their grandchildren would find it necessary to fight and perhaps die in America’s second Revolutionary War.

The law has an obligation to justice. Justice not only for the victim as viewed by the victim, but, justice for stability and preservation of the future of the nation and those who will have to live in it, as well. Many a person in this country having been stolen from, would in the passion of the loss, want death for the perpetrator. But, would it be just for the society to allow the victim to determine what is just punishment?

Our country was not founded on an eye for an eye as is the case in many Islamic countries. Our country was founded the rule of just law as determined a jury of one’s peers, a far cry from allowing the passions and loss of the victims determine what is just. It is one of the monumental strengths of our system, which continues to make America a preferred nation to emigrate to, by many who live under governments where the passions of rulers mete out justice as their passions dictate.

Let us not be too eager to follow in Saddam Hussein’s, al-Queda’s, or China’s footsteps when it comes to how punishment is determined.

Posted by: David R. Remer at June 3, 2007 6:43 AM
Comment #222116

David
Anyone that would harm a child isn’t deserving of redemption. It doesn’t matter if they raped, murdered, crippled, or hooked the child on drugs.
Children are our most precious resource and are among the most innocent and defenseless of our population. Anyone that preys on them is the lowest life form there is. The best thing any society can do for it’s children is to cut the cancer that preys on them out of it. And make sure that it never comes back to have a chance to harm another child.

Posted by: Ron Brown at June 3, 2007 2:36 PM
Comment #222118

david

“death penalty for a child molester. What penalty then would be appropriate for crippling an innocent underage person with a firearm? What would be appropriate for the likes of Enron heads or Savings and Loan thieves who stole 100’s of millions from hard working parents trying to provide for their children?”


i don’t think these are comparable. the crippling would depend on whether it was accidental, or a deliberate act of wounding. two very different circumstances. the others i would say no. while they are IMO horrendous crimes, they are not violent in nature.

“Is selling drugs to minors which can be just as devastating to a young person’s entire life, less deserving of the death penalty if it is appropriate for a molester? How about a person who sells a weapon to a juvenile? How about the Coyote who takes money from illegal aliens to bring them here into a prostitution ring?”


depends on whether the victim goes willingly or is forced under threat of death, or serious bodily harm.


“And should we not then also convict and put to death teachers who fail their students, scarring and diminishing that student’s potential for the rest of their life? Oh, and let us not forget those who publicly state that our government is not acting legally and should be impeached or overthrown at the polls.”


this is a no brainer i think.


“I would not want the rest of my children to have to grow up afraid for their lives at the hands of politicians who have no belief in redemption, rehabilitation, or second chances. That would sure help bring a future in which my “

there are certain times when 2nd chances and redemption are not appropriate opotions. does someone who preys on a helpless child, and viciously wounds, rapes, or batters that child deserve a second chance ? if given a second chance, repeats this behavior, then who is most responsible ? the perpetrator, or the system that freed the perpetrator only to have them victimize again ?


” Many a person in this country having been stolen from, would in the passion of the loss, want death for the perpetrator. But, would it be just for the society to allow the victim to determine what is just punishment?”


i don’t think anyone would dissagree that a victim should not get to choose punishment based on emotion. the punishment should fit the crime though. obviously theft of property shouldn’t be punished by death.


we spend to much time in this country trying to understand why the criminal did what they did, and not on what they did to the victim. the rights of the victim seem to come second, and that isn’t right. everyone deserves due process, but trying to mitigate the damage to the victim by claiming you were abused as a child, or picked on, and emotionaly abused by your peers is not a reasonable defense.


we take freedom from people to punish them for crimminal acts they commit against thier fellow citizens, and is meant to be punishment, as it should be. whether a criminal is rehabilitated or not, is up to them, and will determine thier success once returned to society. those who learn thier lesson will choose to change. sometimes though it is more important to protect the general population from a violent preditor, than it is to rehabilitate them. there are some who can’t be rehabilitated, and are just evil by nature. the death penalty is IMO sometimes appropriate, although it does concern greatly that there is a chance someone could be convicted by mistake, or maliciously by an over zealous prosecutor trying to better his or her record..

Posted by: dbs at June 3, 2007 2:47 PM
Comment #222539

Justice is rare today. I applauded when I read the headlines about this. The death penalty should be extended to ALL rapists; not just the child predators. Vote in the politicians that support this. Our families will be safer.

Posted by: stubborn conservative at June 7, 2007 12:35 PM
Comment #335687

Dr David Kenneth Cochrane Registered Sex Offender Six Counts of rape including minors, three counts of indecent assault all involving patients dating back to the early millennium. Psychiatrist 6 months in Jail, 2 years probation, including 6 month license suspension. North Bay Canada Ontario and now re-employed for the regional health centre.

Posted by: Samantha J Lea at February 6, 2012 3:59 AM
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