Death Penalty vs Schiavo

People who oppose the death penalty should also be opposing Schiavo. She suffered from incompetent lawyering in the court case that established “facts” inimical to her interest (as frequently happens in criminal cases where the defendant can’t afford a good lawyer). All subsequent cases were simply about the question of whether proper procedure was followed in the first case (and it was). Now she has been sentenced to die in a cruel and unusal manner.

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2 Responses to Death Penalty vs Schiavo

  1. hey alex says:

    the death penalty, like states’ rights, is an issue where i am totally, utterly confused about where i stand.

    i lean towards opposing it, because a) every other decent country on earth opposes it and b) that stance enrages justice scalia, which makes me feel all warm inside.

  2. ooghe says:

    yeah- that’s been a grey area for me as well. there are crimes of such a heinous nature that I don’t find myself opposing the idea of executing a *particular* person- say, jeffery dahmer or osama bin laden, for example. I do wind up opposing the death penalty as an institution, however, when I consider that I just don’t think that we’re at a point where race isn’t a huge predictor in how the death penalty gets applied. That the risk of executing innocents falls along unequal race lines seems unacceptable to me.

    as for schiavo, i’ve really not bothered to scrutinize the specifics of the case too much- but the idea of this woman’s death isn’t really something I feel passionately in support of. how medical ethicists and neuroscientists have defined death and the cessation of consciousness is opaque to me, and I’d need to learn more about it before feeling certain that this isn’t a hideous experience to undergo. frankly, i too wish they would euthanize her in this instance.

    i am less conflicted in pointing out the cynicism of tom delay in promoting this cause when he did. if congress wants to debate euthanasia/palliative care and come up with some sort of legislation, they ought to. The subpoena was a ghoulish and hypocritical calculus, however, and people who argue against Roe v. Wade from the perspective of state’s rights yet supported federal intervention in this case here are hypocritical.

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