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7 years ago  ::  Mar 31, 2008 - 5:29PM #11
yrgo
Posts: 48
Greetings, bristlecone77!


bristlecone77:

Who chooses?  Who chooses life versus death?  Who chooses who lives and who dies?


yrgo (hand in the air):

I know!  I know!  Call on me! 


bristlecone77:

All right.  Yrgo, who chooses who lives and who dies?


yrgo:

Some . . . Duly . . . Constituted . . . Authority!


bristlecone77:

Is this a power you want? Do you seek to take the scales and the sword and dish out mercy on one hand and justice on the other?


yrgo:

That power, bristlecone77, I do not have, am not seeking, and will surely NEVER be given, which is, perhaps, for the best, for if ever I were to have such power, no individual KNOWINGLY and NEEDLESSLY making trouble for others would be safe!



EXCERPT (197?):

"(Suddenly wroth)  Listen!  There are, among Christians, individuals who staunchly maintain that a GOD of Love could not so much as countenance the existence of a hell, let alone condemn men and women to everlasting torment in one, and with such noble sentiments I once concurred somewhat, for I too felt that a Just and Loving DEITY would surely make more than generous allowances for human imperfection.

"Unfortunately, that most agreeable and comfortable outlook was soon thoroughly discredited, to my mind anyway. 

"For as I beheld the intolerable arrogance of mere dust and recoiled in horror and dismay at humankind's ruinous and insatiable greed and bristled at man's willful, defiant rejection of integrity and common decency, clemency toward man withered in me like scorched grass, like Jeroboam's hand [1Ki 13.4], until, no longer stout enough to contain the heaving waters of direful judgment, clemency gave way altogether and abruptly vanished into an awesome, thundering flood of incomparable FURY.  The ground of my very being lurched and buckled, and from the ruptured bowels of fierce indignation arose an effluvial stream of seething, molten ANGER, a towering wall of blinding, blazing white-hot RAGE, a bellowing and savage WRATH no words can express!  AND HAD I HAD THE limitless POWER necessary--and no restraining love--I should have seized this vile earth, this rare and lovely planet so outrageously defiled and polluted every whit by human scum, and wrenched it out of orbit and ground it underfoot to a filthy powder, then swept every accursed particle into darkest, hottest HELL! 

"And so the Christian concept of a hell [or say, for example, capital punishment, bristlecone77] no longer puzzles me . . . for I now plainly see the occasion for such an awful state:  PEOPLE MAKE THEMSELVES DESERVING!"



bristlecone77:

To punish what you call murder, will you take the life of a human being?


yrgo:

To punish what I call murder, would I take the life of a human being WHO HAD WRONGFULLY TAKEN THE LIFE OF ANOTHER HUMAN BEING?
 
Yes.


bristlecone77:

Where does it all end?


yrgo:

Presumably, with the execution of the LAST convicted killer.


bristlecone77:

On one hand, you are saying killing is bad, on the other you are advocating killing people.


yrgo:

You may have misunderstood me, bristlecone.  On one and the same hand, I say that JUSTICE is good and that guilty parties ought to be executed--SWIFTLY (Ecc 8.11)--in order to meet its demands.


bristlecone77:   

If you're going to call yourself pro-life . . .


yrgo:

I don't!  If a new addition to the human family is NOT going to be welcomed into a safe and loving and nurturing environment, then I say "ABORT!"



Not the most lighthearted and satisfying of exchanges for us, bristlecone77, but . . .

ALL THE BEST TO YOU ANYWAY!
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7 years ago  ::  Mar 31, 2008 - 6:09PM #12
bristlecone77
Posts: 65
These are not easy questions for any of us.  No system is perfect and there is great wisdom in the saying an eye for an eye leaves the world blind.  The truth is, the philosophies of law often leave us all hypocrites.

I am a pacifist.  That does not mean I don't believe anyone should kill ever.  There are times when it is necessary but those times are few and far between.  Killing someone is often an easy, blowout patch solution, not a long term fix. 

Personally, I believe abortion is wrong.  Should it be legal?  Absolutely.  But the long term fix to an abortion problem is to provide easy and safe birth control to all.  That is better than abortion and better than leaving babies on doorsteps.

This is not an easy subject at all but it does get people thinking which is good.

With love and apologies for being aggressive about it,

Shekah
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7 years ago  ::  Mar 31, 2008 - 6:32PM #13
Gotchaye
Posts: 72
It's only a hypocritical set of beliefs if you project your own understanding of pro-life on to the people in question.

The easy answer is just the analogous question: "how can someone be pro-property but still in favor of fines for misbehavior?"

I think we would all identify ourselves as generally pro-property, but we're all also fine with restrictions on property rights for people who have acted wrongly.  Likewise for freedom - we're all pro-freedom while favoring incarceration for certain crimes.

Pro-X is always only meant to apply to things that deserve X.  It's hardly deceptive for anti-abortion activists to call themselves this - their whole point is that all (and sometimes only) innocent biologically human organisms deserve life.

That's all for the distinction between abortion and the death penalty - pro-lifers often believe that fetuses deserve life while murderer's don't.

As for war, this is tricker.  Not because the numbers involved are higher, but because innocents are put at risk.  Here, we have to note that most of those who are against abortion but who favor the war in Iraq are religious Christians.  There's a long intellectual history there concerning just war.  Most of it, it seems to me, hinges on Aquinas' doctrine of double effect (see the wikipedia page).  Basically, it's implicit in many Christian traditions that that there's a difference between intent and foreknowledge.  As long as the death of an innocent is not intended, it's not as bad as it otherwise would be.  It is often claimed that it is impossible to perform an abortion without intending the death of an innocent, as that is the nature of the act.
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7 years ago  ::  Apr 01, 2008 - 9:39AM #14
yrgo
Posts: 48
Greetings, bristlecone77 and Gotchaye!


bristlecone77 (Post 11):

I am a pacifist. That does not mean I don't believe anyone should kill ever. There are times when it is necessary but those times are few and far between.


yrgo:

When Timothy McVey was given a lethal injection for the bombing of the federal building in Oklahoma City, relatives of some of the victims were permitted to witness the execution.  One observer could not help feeling that justice had NOT been done.  Her loved one had died VIOLENTLY amidst thick clouds of dust and debris, but the man responsible had been allowed to pay for his crime merely by "FALLING ASLEEP" in a CALM setting!

Anyway, bristlecone, Timothy McVey is now dead.  Just how bad is that for him?  Just how terrible is that for Oklahoma City?  Or for America?  Or the world?  Should McVey still be alive?  Or are he and the world better off with him dead?
   

bristlecone77:

"Killing someone is often an easy, blowout patch solution, not a long term fix."


yrgo:

Are you sure?  Is that what the residents of Oklahoma City are saying?  Or would they be more inclined to regard INCARCERATION as a "blowout patch solution"?

To find anything good to say about the former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein may not be possible.  However, the "Butcher of Baghdad" did say:  "You have a person; you have a problem.  If there's no person, there's no problem."  As a ruler who was in power long enough to know one way or the other, Saddam Hussein clearly believed that "Killing someone" was BOTH "an easy, blowout patch solution" AND "a long term fix"!


bristlecone77:

Personally, I believe abortion is wrong. Should it be legal? Absolutely. But the long term fix to an abortion problem is to provide easy and safe birth control to all.


Excerpt (197?):

"Thus, the only wholly ethical solution to the problem of unwanted [pregnancies and] children is the prevention of conception . . . "


yrgo:

Bristlecone77!  WE are IN AGREEMENT!!!

( : - >


bristlecone77:

This is not an easy subject at all but it does get people thinking which is good.


yrgo:

Right again!


Gotchaye (Post 12):

Pro-X is always only meant to apply to things that deserve X.


yrgo:

Good Point!!!



All the best to you both!
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7 years ago  ::  Apr 01, 2008 - 10:48AM #15
Gandalf_Parker
Posts: 1,188

Beautiful_Dreamer wrote:

I apologize if this has already been mentioned here; I have been on Bnet a long time, but haven't come to this board.

Can someone please explain to me how someone can be 'pro-life', but still be for the death penalty and for the war in Iraq (separate topic)? 
--snipped--
And the idea of an innocent person being put to death is a big problem and even one is far too many.


I see that same type of question come up alot. Such as in the animal welfare forum. And even the marriage relationships forum.

The disagreement seems to stem from those who consider their actions based on the "good of the many" vs those who feel that good should be more widely applied even down to the "good of the one". It would be nice if the good of each individual would correspond to the good of the many but you will find that not everyone believes that.

It sounds as if you are questioning the "good of the many" crowd for supporting pro-life abortion which would appear to be a "good of the one" choice? I would say that they have not found a "good of the many" reason to change their position on that one item.

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7 years ago  ::  Apr 04, 2008 - 3:09PM #16
solfeggio
Posts: 9,467
Gandalf -
I think you make a good point here.  But I would expand that to include the thinking that some lives are more important or more valuable than others.

People who are against abortion must feel that the life of a zygote, embryo, or fetus is equal to - or even more important then - the life of a grown woman. 

And it would be fair to say that many American people have no doubt at all that the life of the average U.S. serviceman or servicewoman is far more valuable than the life of the average Iraqi citizen.  After all, the nightly news often carries stories about U.S. soldiers killed in the line of duty, with reporters visiting the grieving families of such men and women.  And every few days, there is an updating of the number of U.S. dead.

But how many stories about Iraqi civilians killed do we see on CNN?  For that matter, what, exactly, IS the number of people who ended up as collateral damage in that miserable country?  Does anybody outside of Iraq even care?

Most Americans doubtless felt the same way about the Vietnamese people who were killed during that ill-advised war. 

The lives of celebrities and influential people are generally thought of as more valuable than those of us poor peons, aren't they?  Who was this Anna Nicole Smith, for example, that she should have had such an enormous amount of media attention when she took a drug overdose and died?  Or Heath Ledger, for that matter?

By the same token, the lives of people who contribute to society, like scientists who find cures for disease, or popular presidents, are disproportionately valued.  Someone like Ronnie Reagan, a man of mediocre abilities who presided over a mediocre and scandal-ridden presidencey is, nevertheless, accorded the honour of having an airport named after him simply by virtue of the fact that he was a popular president!

Many Catholics doubtless feel that the Pope's life is infinitely more important than that of the average person on the street.

And, of course, there are the lives of nonhumans, which count for virtually nothing except as pets or because they are deemed suitable to do jobs for humans.

Who gives a thought to ending the life of a fish, for example?  And who cares if chickens or pigs live and die in misery and squalor?
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7 years ago  ::  Apr 04, 2008 - 10:18PM #17
PrickliestPear
Posts: 15
[QUOTE=bubbysmommy;394804][COLOR="Navy"]Sorry, I take offense to your little Hypocrite quote.[/COLOR][/QUOTE]

Don't apologise, I can totally live with that.

Hypocrites never like being called "hypocrites."  Doesn't mean they're not, though, does it?
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6 years ago  ::  May 28, 2008 - 11:59AM #18
Beautiful_Dreamer
Posts: 5,167

bubbysmommy wrote:

I happen to be Pro-Life, Pro DP, & against the war in Iraq. I happen to in favor of the War in Afghanistan for several reasons. First & Foremost, the Taliban regime was decimated & the Women over there were finally allowed to receive basic things like medical care & an education. They are no longer being murdered for leaving their homes without a male escort. Secondly, we need to search for Bin Laden until either there is real proof that he is dead, or we have captured him.
Now, as for the DP, I do believe that it should be used in some cases. Not every murder warrants the DP. However there are times when it is justified in my opinion. Because you have not been privy to some of our discussions I will highlight my personal reasons.
My best friend was tricked into picking up her 3 young children from her ex husbands house. When she got there, he had the kids lined up in the kitchen. He forced Karen to take an over dose of sleeping pills then, while those babies (ages, 2,3, & 4) watched, he stabbed her 17 times in the chest. He then slit 2yr old Rachel's throat while her brothers watched. He left her to bleed to death & strangle on her own blood while he took the boys to the bathroom. When the Police finally got there & broke into the bathroom, that bastard had the knife buried in Aaron's (age 4) neck. Jay (age 3) was hiding in the bathtub. Aaron did survive & later testified against his father. There was never a question as to guilt in this case. It is cases like this one that I believe the DP should be applied. Jerry Allard (The ex husband & father to these children) was given the DP. He died of natural causes before he could be executed.
So, I hope that you understand why I have come to the conclusions that I have concerning the DP.



I can certainly see where you are coming from.  I would think for something like this, where there is no question of guilt, there is premeditation involved, more than one person was killed, and a child was killed, then yes I would think the DP is warranted. In my home state, NC, I believe this is the law.  This would certainly not be a case of an innocent person being put to death.

On one hand, I believe in redemption and mercy.  This comes from Jesus-this is not to say that justice should not be done, but I wonder if there are other ways to do justice.  I don't see the DP as a deterrent either. But on the other hand, I am sure I would feel differently if it were my friend or family member murdered. So this question is largely academic for me. I really hope that I haven't offended anyone.

More where that came from...

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6 years ago  ::  May 28, 2008 - 12:03PM #19
Beautiful_Dreamer
Posts: 5,167

PrickliestPear wrote:

"Can someone please explain to me how someone can be 'pro-life', but still be for the death penalty and for the war in Iraq (separate topic)?"

The short answer is, "by being a hypocrite."

The term "pro-life" is, popularly speaking, a euphemism for being opposed to abortion rights. It says little about a person's actual views about life in general since, as you mentioned, a large number of self-identified "pro-life" supporters (at least in the US) are in favour of capital punishment and war.

Don't bother looking for a rational explanation, because there isn't anything rational about it.

"...other countries have done well without the DP, and actually some are doing a lot better than we are in terms of crime and other social problems."

To put it politely, yes.



To be fair, though, I don't claim that there aren't other factors involved. There are many.  It is just that I think it might be a good thing for the government to look at other countries and take advice from ones that are doing well in areas we are not, or who have found a better way. This statement is considered unpatriotic at best and blasphemous at worst in some places around here (South).

More where that came from...

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6 years ago  ::  Jun 02, 2008 - 8:33AM #20
bubbysmommy
Posts: 1,119
[QUOTE=Beautiful_Dreamer;528654]I can certainly see where you are coming from.  I would think for something like this, where there is no question of guilt, there is premeditation involved, more than one person was killed, and a child was killed, then yes I would think the DP is warranted. In my home state, NC, I believe this is the law.  This would certainly not be a case of an innocent person being put to death.

On one hand, I believe in redemption and mercy.  This comes from Jesus-this is not to say that justice should not be done, but I wonder if there are other ways to do justice.  I don't see the DP as a deterrent either. But on the other hand, I am sure I would feel differently if it were my friend or family member murdered. So this question is largely academic for me. I really hope that I haven't offended anyone.[/QUOTE]

[COLOR="Teal"]You have certainly not offended me. I too agree that this is the rare case when the DP is justified. This is what I have been trying to say all along. That I am in favor of the DP in these types of cases. I just don't like to relate this story every time. It is a tough thing for me even now. I fear that the DP is currently being used too often. There are entirely too many people sitting on death row whose guilt is not so clear. These cases need to be reviewed over & over again until either this person is proven absolutely guilty or not. If there is even the slightest hint that this person is not guilty, the DP should be removed from the table.[/COLOR]
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