October 26, 2006

"None greater than thee, O Lord, none greater than thee."

Danny Harold Rolling, who murdered five college students, sang a hymn as he received his lethal injection.

18 comments:

Dave said...

Nice.

Does fealty to religion and piety lessen his crimes?

BrianOfAtlanta said...

No, but it gets him pie in the sky.

mcg said...

Well, maybe it gave him more peace about his death, but death he deserved still.

Finn Kristiansen said...

Nothing wrong with thinking on God when being put to death for one's sins.

This day he might even be with God in paradise.

Ann Althouse said...

Finn: This is a reason to oppose the death penalty. Anyone who knows exactly when he's dying has the ideal chance to take all the religious precautions (which his victims were denied). Of course, this is also a reason not to believe this is the plan for the afterlife... otherwise hell is full of unfortunate young people while most executed persons get heaven.

Harry Eagar said...

Remind me why I'm supposed to be afraid of Satan worshippers.

Michael said...

I grew up in Shreveport and actually knew Danny and Omatha for a few years - we went to the same church. He was a nice guy at the time, but after he got into drugs and left the church his inner demons came out, and he got crazier and crazier until finally that was just about the only thing he had left.

I'm sorry Danny made the decisions he did, but I'm not sorry to see him die. In the end he was an evil man. His victims and their families deserved vengeance.

P. Froward said...

Death penalty protesters said the execution only served to provide Rolling additional attention.

"The state of Florida is giving this psychopathic killer just what he wanted" ...


That just doesn't even begin to make sense, or anything that resembles sense. Who cares if he gets what he wanted? He's dead! What, does this mean his strategic aims have been advanced? If so, how? And what were they anyway? Jumping Jesus! They didn't kill him to give him something to think about. This should, in my view, be obvious to anybody who's at all well informed on the subject of dead people. They don't think about much, is a key point here. WTF?


I think the death penalty is a good idea. The death penalty recognizes that you really can use up all your second chances. What you do really does matter, and when you try to laugh it off, nobody else will smile.

Revenant said...

This is a reason to oppose the death penalty.

Well, not if you're an atheist. He can pray all he wants, he's just going in the ground to rot with the rest of us.

Personally I'm against the death penalty (for unrelated reasons). But I'm glad this guy's dead.

Elizabeth said...

I don't think Danny Rolling's little song had anything to do with spirituality. He was raised Pentecost, or maybe Assemblies of God, I don't recall. He uses religion as a stage prop. He sang his little song to taunt the families of his victims. I have some memories of following his trial and being upset at the time at how he was dramatic and inappropriate in court. He was an egocentric attention hound, right up until the end.

I oppose the death penalty out of conscience; the fact that we can get it wrong with even one person is a moral quandary I can't get past. I also find it hard as a Christian to countenance killing in anything but self-defense. But it's not a clearcut position. I have felt a deep satisfaction at the deaths of several serial killers, including Bundy, Rolling and Patrick Sonnier, upon whom "Dead Man Walking" was based. I wouldn't be unhappy if we abolished the death penalty in favor of life without parole, but I can't deny my gut feeling that some folks just need killing.

Joe Baby said...

I can't look into his heart (would just look like tomato paste anyhow), but this could have been a last minute bid for clemency to a different authority.

ignacio said...

Danny Rolling is just fortunate he got lethal injection instead of Old Sparky. Those were hideous murders.

Revenant said...

Patrick Sonnier, upon whom "Dead Man Walking" was based.

You know, I kept hearing things like "this movie will make you think about the death penalty", and certainly the folks who made it are against the death penalty. But personally I thought the film presented an airtight case that the guy deserved to die -- hell, they even show him committing the murder/rapes in question, just to remove any possible doubt of his guilt. That was pretty much the view of the people I know who've seen the film, too. I don't know anybody, even people like me who disagree with the death penalty, who felt regret that the guy got executed.

Harry Eagar said...

Well, I don't think we should execute the innocent, but the last comments were just bizarre.

You're against the death penalty, but if somebody else performs it, you're not really against it, as long as the guy was a really bad guy.

I think opposition to the death penalty (when imposed on the appropriately guilty) is immoral, but at least some opponents are consistently against it.

Being against it except when doing it makes you feel better is solipsitic nonsense.

Revenant said...

You're against the death penalty, but if somebody else performs it, you're not really against it, as long as the guy was a really bad guy

I don't object to killing people, I object to killing people who don't deserve to die. Since I think our courts do sometimes convict innocent people of murder, I'm against the death penalty. Since Rolling confessed and the "Dead Man Walking" character was shown to have committed the crimes, my objections to the death penalty don't apply to them.

Elizabeth, meanwhile, is simply saying that some people are so evil that she's glad to see them die in spite of her moral objections -- not that killing's ok as long as it feels good.

In short -- you don't know what the hell you're talking about, and you owe both of us an apology.

Freeman Hunt said...

Finn: This is a reason to oppose the death penalty.

That assumes that Finn, as a Christian, would hope to see someone, even this someone, condemned to Hell. I doubt that he hopes for that. I wouldn't hope for that fate for anyone. The hope is that even the most vile person's heart turns from evil before death.

rightwingprof said...

How awful for the witnesses. Will the state get them some kind of therapy?

(If you heard him sing at his sentencing, you know what I mean.)

Michael said...

At his execution he also confessed to several murders in Shreveport of which he was suspected but never charged.