September 10, 2011

"Let’s look at the applause, the 'execution cheer,' if you will."

"Because any number of analysts might have expected Perry to say what he said, but the cheer was a surprise — a welcome sort for some, but unwelcome for others."

The NYT "Opinionator" deals with the Rick-Perry-and-the-death-penalty sequence from last Wednesday's debate, quoting a number of bloggers... including me.

87 comments:

Synova said...

Quotes Taranto, I think: "Thus whenever someone makes that argument, we feel a tinge of patriotic pride."

What makes me have a twinge of outraged (in a subdued way) patriotic pride were the two people being all reasonable about explaining it, Coats and Greenwald, who helpfully explain that *this* was the country that viewed executions as entertainment, after all, so what do we expect from America.

The implication is that we're a special case, prone to glory in violence because we're America and we swing that way.

And that makes me feel patriotic and a bit angry.

And do I really have to point out what the lie is? Is there someone who hears these "after all, this is America where we used to view an execution as entertainment and have a picnic" explanations and doesn't recognize where the lie is?

Certainly both Coats and Greenwald are bright enough to identify the lie they both just told.

If they wanted to.

mesquito said...

James Taranto:

It seems to us that the crowd’s enthusiasm last night was less sanguinary than defiant. The applause and the responses to it reflect a generations-old mutual contempt between the liberal elite and the large majority of the population, which supports the death penalty.

Exactly. I have my doubts about the death penalty, but what I was thinking at the time was: "Stick it up your ass you insufferable Manhattan pussy."

pauldar said...

Well, it it helps, wife and I both clapped here as well.

not 100% sure, but it appeared our kitty was also clapping as well.

mesquito said...

And to hell with two-faced assholes like Barack Obama who publicly support the death penalty while appointing judges who they damn well know would use their power to end it by judicial fiat.

traditionalguy said...

The deal is Justice has a meaning in Texas and Perry explained that well.

The society that abstains from justice has abandoned its citizens and is showing how much their lives are worth...nothing.

Osama got justice at the hands of a cold blooded execution squad sent by Obama with no trial and no appeals.

Texas is a safer place and the world is a safer place because of death penalty justice.

So we should applaud Perry and Obama...which Perry did next.

Maguro said...

It doesn't get any more meta than "The Opinionator" - it's liberal navel-gazing about liberal navel-gazing.

Trooper York said...

The contempt that the liberal elite has for the common people shines through here as ever when they let loose the mask.

It is as it ever was.

Why the surprise?

YoungHegelian said...

Actually, the death penalty polls surprisingly high in EVERY first world country. The death penalty was never shut down by popular referendum anywhere. It was shut down because the political elite thought it was beneath them.

And, when you start looking at the detailed results of the polling, even among those "opposed" to the death penalty, there are moral distinctions made. Among the opposed, close to 100% are opposed to the death penalty for, e.g. murder while knocking off a liquor store. If you ask if they would oppose the death penalty for a murderous tyrant, e.g. Hitler, and opposition to the death penalty dwindles to single digits.

edutcher said...

These morons have been looking down their noses at us since Reagan, whining about how we should be more like the Euros.

Well, we've seen how the Euros turned out and most Americans are glad we didn't listen to our betters and our betters seem touchingly crushed that all those people in Flyover Country - which starts at the Fulton Fish Market and South Philly BTW - really don't give a damn whether we have their approval or not.

blake said...

I dunno. I'm against the death penalty, but I'm in the minority, I know.

I can't really feel good about a government that defies the wishes of the people, but I'm not sure I'd applaud the death penalty.

Applaud some liberal jackass getting his head handed to him for stupid framing? Sure.

Keystone said...

Williams asked a gotcha question and got his head handed to him. The fact of the matter is that media elites don't like America or Americans very much. Most Americans understand that some people really need killing.

Hagar said...

It was also a grossly unfair question to pose to Governor perry, and this surely must have been known to Brian Williams and the NBC crew, since we went through this very thoroughly with George W., namely that the governor of Texas is unique in the nation in not having any authority to interfere with executions other than that he can order a one-time 30 day stay while the parole board reviews the sentence. That's it, and the parole board has rarely if ever agreed with the governors, so all it has done is prolong the process for 30 days.

This was pure grandstanding on Brian Williams' part, and all it did was expose his ignorance and personal vanity to the world.

rhhardin said...

The death penalty is neither vengeance nor deterrence.

It's society's giving a place to the voice of the victim, a voice that is missing.

Trials are not perfect, but giving that place to the missing voice is more far important than the rare mistake.

You take one for the team in that case.

PatCA said...

So is Norway more moral than us because their killer of 80+ people, mostly children, will get 21 years maximum? Let's talk about the Middle East, China--are they less savage than we are?

IMHO, this is the media machine cranking it up for the next election: Rick Perry is a Killer! Rick Perry is a Stupid Killer!

Ho hum.

Michael K said...

It was a useful lesson for the lefty elites that most people disagree with them and want them to know it.

roesch-voltaire said...

Interesting that those folks who actually view the death sentences, including family members of the victims, have never been reported as cheering. Whether you agree with the need for the death penalty or not, there is something uncanny about cheering for it. I think the lesson is not for the left or the right, but for our society which should question why we cheer over such grime matters. Oh I know I am an elitist who doesn't understand the masses-- I think I heard that somewhere else in recent history.

Tyrone Slothrop said...

When I was a silly liberal I opposed the death penalty because a dead person cannot be rehabilitated. Part of becoming a cynical conservative was the gradual realization that no one is rehabilitated by prison. A death sentence serves poorly as deterrent, and as revenge it is never sufficient. The simple purpose that the death penalty serves is to remove truly evil people from our midst

Cedarford said...

From the NY Times:

"Greenwald, in the same post cited above makes the connection to the American cheering that followed the killing of Osama bin Laden. (“In all cases, performing giddy dances over state-produced corpses is odious and wrong.”)"
We are better than that!

========================
Can't stand that mentality!!

"WE are better than that!!!" - Is just frequently chanted Alinsky code for: 'unless you agree with our better human nature, you who disagree are not just wrong...but the opposite of "better" is worse. As in worse human beings'.

If Greenwalt and other Progressive Jews like him, plus Leftists, Euroweenies had their way about never celebrating a Victory over an enemy - we would call D-Day "that tragic event of June 6th".

And use the day to mourn the over 425,000 Allied and German troops were killed, wounded or went missing during and in invasion prep missions before and until the Allies took Normandy -the whoile Battle of Normandy. This figure includes over 209,000 Allied casualties, with nearly 37,000 dead amongst the ground forces and a further 16,714 deaths amongst the Allied air forces. Of the Allied casualties, 83,045 were from 21st Army Group (British, Canadian and Polish ground forces), 125,847 from the US ground forces. The losses of the German forces during the Battle of Normandy can only be estimated. Roughly 200,000 German troops were killed or wounded.
Add in another 15,000 to 20,000 French casualties.

A solemn gathering on Omaha Beach, where Wiccan Warlocks, Priests, Mullahs, Rabbis, Ministers, and state-recognized atheist leaders led all in mourning on the senseless loss of innocent life and descendents of Allies apologized for killing so many innocent French and German people, the Germans begged forgiveness for killing the Allies and leaving lousy tips at French bistros.

All would pay special tribute to the Hero military cops, the Hero medic EMTs, even the Hero Luftwaffe base firefighters who "rushed towards Allied caused burning buildings and aircraft when lesser Nazi men were running from the fires".

We would also rescind all Medals of Honor, Iron Crosses, Victoria Croses given for gallantry and heroic deeds in direct combat with the enemy that helped us prevail. Only those Nazis and Americans that flopped on a grenade to save others or shot trying to save a wounded French baby would qualify for the highest awards during combat on Normandy.

Unknown said...

Tyrone -

You slander me personally without any provocation on another thread and you don't have the courage to stand by your statements?

Ask for my email here and I'll gie it publicly and then we'll communicate and you and I can settle this like men.

Oh wait - that's right you irresponsible drive by slanderer.

You are a coward, hiding behind your mother's internet.

You don't have the balls to act like a man and stand behind what you say.

Trooper York said...

Well you know Roachy I am personally against the death penalty.

I think they should be tortured until they beg for death.

But that's just me.

Cedarford said...

roesch-voltaire said...
Interesting that those folks who actually view the death sentences, including family members of the victims, have never been reported as cheering.
==================
As a liberal elitist, you don't understand that most families with someone killed by a murdering monster have been ground down by the near-endless time it takes to try the animal and go through all the appeals. It wears their emotions down, numbs them when the perp finally does go bye-bye 5-30 years later.
There would be a lot more cheering by the victim's survivors if justice was no longer a endless timestream of Talmudic debate and due process - but was returned to being as swift and sure as it was before the Warren Court.

Unknown said...

I would pay to see Tyrone tortured before death.

Also cubanbob.

But I don't have to pay - if Tyrone would have the courage to stand behind the uncalled for personal slander he wrote against me without any provocation from me personally in a another thread.

All Tyrone has to do is be man enough and ask here publically for my email which I will give and then he can email me.

I will respond and we can set a meeting time and settle his unprovoked slander like men.

Is Tyrone a coward?

Palladian said...

I wonder how many commenters who threaten other commenters with violence are going to be allowed to post here? I mean, we already have "J", who seems to be allowed to post threats, racist, anti-gay crap with abandon.

Just wondering if I need to purchase body armor or upgrade my ADT service or something.

Tyrone Slothrop said...

@Unknown

I also comment at Hot Air if you want to follow me over there.

Beldar said...

Those dishonest hacks omitted, of course, Prof. Althouse's correction of the completely false premise of the question (Texas governors have no discretionary pardon power, and are constitutionally forbidden to do more than grant one 30-day stay).

They're all brazen liars for Obama.

Phil 3:14 said...

The Thread is an in-depth look at how major news and controversies are being debated across the online spectrum.

I guess I missed the "spectrum".

(PS I don't support the death penalty but I thought Perry explained his position well. Williams was clearly the "odd man out")

Trooper York said...

Sometimes it is the same candybar in a different wrapper.

Unknown said...

P{alladian'

So if I understand you, it's okay for someone to comment on another commenter and call them "Stupid and incurably stupid" for soemthing they related that was factual happeneing to themselves. And then to call that person"j" even when it's not?

I related a personal difficulty I had with GEICO and cubanbob called me incurably stupid. I am not some politician - I actully solicited help from other readers here and cubanbob used the opportunity to call me stupid. Why?

When I responded calling him an asshole, Tyrone jumped on for no reason and called me a douchbag - for responding to the personal attack from cubanbob. What?!!!!!

So I played along, and they just got worse.

Now, I believe they should stand behind their slander. I am willing to call them out to personally talk about it. But theu want to hide behind their unprovoked slander of me and continue to do so.

That is wrong, Palladian

And you know it.

Phil 3:14 said...

If Greenwalt and other Progressive Jews like him,
C4, you just can't help yourself, can you.

Despicable.

(And did I miss something with the Tyrone "anonymous" fued?)

Tyrone Slothrop said...

@Phil 3:14

Ix-nay on the yood-fay. There's a mad troll about.

wv: polato-- I say polayto, you say polahto.

Unknown said...

And did I miss something with the Tyrone "anonymous" fued?)

Start here

I am Brent, but my computer keeps changing it to "Unknown".

I am not Maureen Dowd or some political celebrity. I am a person who has posted here before. I had a real problem where GEICO this morning actually stole money from account (they admit an "error") but they won't fix it!!! MadisonMan was nice enough to offer help. My problem and true story fit in with the topic Ann posted.

cubanbob called me incurably stupid for having the problem. That wasn't necessary. But when I responded back, he continued and then Tyrone jumped in, unprovoked.

I think they should stand behind their slander.

I think it's right to call them out.

AJ Lynch said...

I suspect the applause [from a Caleeforrnnyaaa audience] was for Texas, a state that actually enforces its own laws and does not let special interest groups [like the Innocence Project] delay delay and delay lawfully sentenced executions.

The audience reaction was not a bloodlust cheer for the death penalty; it was a poke in the eye to states and pols who find ways to circumvent the will of the people.

Steven said...

The implication is that we're a special case, prone to glory in violence because we're America and we swing that way.

I get really, really pissed off at that sort of aggressive provincial ignorance.

Last public execution in the US was in 1936. Last public execution in France was in 1939. Both had massive, raucous crowds.

purplepenquin said...

My biggest problem with the death penalty is the lack of accountability when a mistake has been made. If someone has been wrongfully killed, then the person(s) whose actions caused that death should be executed. If someone has to bet their own life that another person is truly deserving of being executed, then I think that will result in less...if any...mistakes. Only question: Who is responsible...the jury, the DA, the judge, the parole board?

AJ Lynch said...

Brent vs. Tyrone? Sorry Brent but I gotta bet on the guy named Tyrone.

Tyrone Slothrop said...

Brent or Unknown--

OK, this is the last time I will respond to you.

As I said, I was inclined to sympathize with you until you invited cubanbob to "fuck his daughter". Silly me, I can't let such gratuitous incivility pass without comment. Unfortunately, all of your comments since have taken the same tone. Apparently you won't stand by them though, because as soon as I see them, they are sent to the trash. If you are going to hang around here you have to be able to take getting called stupid on a regular basis. Just ask garage. So be a good troll and suck it up. In the mean time, do us all a favor and leave off the pedophilia references. They are grating to the ear, and damage your reputation.

wv: later-- no kidding, it was "later"

Steven said...

My biggest problem with the death penalty is the lack of accountability when a mistake has been made. If someone has been wrongfully killed, then the person(s) whose actions caused that death should be executed.

And do you advocate a similar penalty of imprisonment of the responsible parties for cases where someone has been wrongfully imprisoned?

There is nothing uniquely irreversible about the death penalty; you can release a man from prison but you can never give the years you took from him back.

ic said...

Remember a former governor let the State of Akansas execute a mentally handicapped i.e. retarded prisoner to show he was tough on crime? Even I, a death penalty supporter, was troubled.

Cedarford said...

Phil 3:14 said...
If Greenwalt and other Progressive Jews like him,
C4, you just can't help yourself, can you.

Despicable.

===================
Greenwalt refers to himself as a progressive Jew.
Despicable? Yes, Greenwalt is. And so are you for thinking OBVIOUS statements of fact must be stifled.

ken in sc said...

The death penalty has deterred me several times. I have been divorced twice.

Synova said...

"Whether you agree with the need for the death penalty or not, there is something uncanny about cheering for it. I think the lesson is not for the left or the right, but for our society which should question why we cheer over such grime matters."

And I think that Taranto was right when he explained, "It seems to us that the crowd’s enthusiasm last night was less sanguinary than defiant."

In other words, it was more about defying Williams' attempt to score liberal political points and less about cheering executions. Yes, the cheering came before he got around to it, but the audience knew what was coming and they were right.

Hagar said...

The Professor's thread is about the question and Gov. Perry's response.

The question was also unfair amd improper, since the death penalty is removed from the Texas governors' purview, and so Gov. Perry only had the choice between upholding his own state's citizens and system of government or critizing them on national TV on a highly emotional issue.

Whatever his personal opinions might be, he chose to do what any politician in that situation would choose.

Cedarford said...

ic said...
Remember a former governor let the State of Akansas execute a mentally handicapped i.e. retarded prisoner to show he was tough on crime? Even I, a death penalty supporter, was troubled.

===============
I wasn't. I agreed with the jury, judge, appellate boards and Clinton that the monster was stupid..but smart enough to know it was evil, against the law, and he could pay with his life for doing it.
Only the truly insane enough not to understand their acts and those so retarded they have no idea what they did - should be given waivers.

Titus said...

I am in Cleveland. On my way back to Boston. What a sad city. A former Rust Belt powerhouse which is just shit.

Northern Indiana and Northern Ohio are just tragic.

I have never seen so many domestic cars in my life...and boarded up businesses, natch.

Tits and Clouds.

I hate to admit it but I am staying at a Days Inn...it excepts dogs.

Titus said...

Thank God I packed fresh fruit, granola, arugula, ancient Indian spices and rare organic nuts.

This part of the country is littered with fast food shit.

Cinnabon's for days. What is that shit they spread on those things? That fatty at the Cinnabon had a huge tat spread across her ginormous tits.

Tits and Clouds.

Titus said...

My first drive out to Boston was with my best friend who is from Chicago.

Along the entire way we would look at drivers at other cars and would rate them on a scale of 1 to 10 and say whether or not we would do them.

As soon as we hit Mass. the numbers skyrocketed. True story. I knew I would love Mass.

Clouds and Tits.

Titus said...

Did you all know that Cleveland is supposed to have the largest gay complex in the world?

It is a gym, restaurant, club, hotel, bar, dance club, and "spa".

It is 50,000 square feet. I thought of staying there but I am married.

It is called FLEX...natch.

David said...

Trooper York said...
"The contempt that the liberal elite has for the common people shines through here as ever when they let loose the mask."

True. And that applause was as much about the reverse of that feeling as it was about capital punishment.

mesquito said...

I find dogs unexceptable.

But what the fuck do I know? I drive a Ford.

Mark O said...

I'm vaguely upset that you made me read this crap from the NYT. Be more careful.

warlocketx said...

Taranto came close to figuring it out, but in the end he went on and let his inner bigot shine through. The commenters there took up the torch and did an admirable job.

News flash: nobody was cheering deaths.

The takeover by the State of the responsibility for retributive justice was one of the major innovations of Western society. Compared to the tribal-based system of individual revenge, it allows building a larger community of mutually-trusting individuals.

Leftoid elitists are abandoning that innovation, and if you dig down to the bottom of their objections what it amounts to is that they're just too damn finicky to accept the responsibility. The net result is that instead of punishing wrongdoers they endorse them.

Texas doesn't do that. Do I wish Texas had a better process for establishing guilt? Damn straight, but the fact that the process is sometimes defective doesn't override the necessity for somebody to provide retributive justice. Gov. Perry is fine with that -- and that, not 234 (or however many) deaths, is what the crowd was cheering.

Regards,
Ric

Unknown said...

Tyrone you are an uncivil coward.

You are a piece of worthless human refuse.

You are a troll.

Larry J said...

Trooper York said...
The contempt that the liberal elite has for the common people shines through here as ever when they let loose the mask.


What I think the self-proclaimed "elite" don't realize is the magnitude of contempt the common people have for them.

As for the death penalty, I have mixed opinions about it. However, all the talk about revenge or deterrance are red herrings. The proper name is "capital punishment." It is for those who have been convicted of the most serious crimes. It seems some people are uneasy with the idea of punishment. They come up with phoney names like "The Department of Corrections" (which doesn't correct anyone) to gloss over the fact that people are sent to prison as punishment. If it'd make them feel better, liberals would probably rename it something like the "Department of Snuggle Bunnies" to ease their minds about locking people up.

Texas isn't afraid of using the death penalty, and as governor, Perry has little power to stop an execution. The law in Texas doesn't grant the governor that power.

AJ Lynch said...

Which is more cruel?

Sentencing killers to death but never actually executing them and thus torturing the emotions and psyches of the victim's friends and families for decades?

Or executing killers?

EDH said...

Honey Bunny Perry: "Any of you fucking pricks move, and I'll execute every motherfucking last one of ya!"

[Applause]

bgates said...

Oh, c'mon, it was a perfectly legitimate question to ask Perry, just like it was legitimate when Williams asked Obama whether he was going to submit legislation to abolish the federal death penalty in some alternate universe where journalists aren't all dishonest anti-American political hacks.

Bob Ellison said...

I heard an NPR commentary yesterday about pop music reactions to 9/11. The hired gun said something like "and then there was this one guy...I think his name was Todd Beason...Beamer, that's it...who apparently was involved in Flight 93..."

After waxing poetic about how wonderfully Springsteen, various rappers, and others had reacted in song to 9/11, this commenter commented on a "knee-jerk" song some country artist did-- it told how, he said, America was going to kick your ass if you do her wrong. It was, in the ears of the NPR dude, a bad, bad song, in service of bad, bad ideas and/or emotions.

bagoh20 said...

The death penalty is society's responsibility if it truly values innocent life, and recognizes the level of violation and theft that murder is. There are a lot of ways developed over the centuries to show it even more strongly, but a clinical pain-free execution is the minimum possible that a society can use to perform it's responsibility to it's morality.

Allowing a heinous murderer to live their life under care and support of the state is immoral.

A murder sentence of life in prison is nearly identical to the treatment our innocent seniors, or mentally disabled citizens get at the hands of the state. Not that the disabled are treated badly, but that the murderer is treated just as well. That's immoral.

Lauderdale Vet said...

I think people feel suffocated by the mantle of Political Correctness.

I think the applause had more to do with “feeling a breath of fresh air” than it did with reflecting on the actual death penalty.

We could all use a little fresh air, I think.

murgatroyd666 said...

Reading the comments to the New York Times piece, I was struck by the smug sanctimony of so many of the commenters. "We don't allow executions here! We're better than that! We're intelligent, and moral, and so, so compassionate!"

Well, I have news for them. They do allow executions there. There were 532 executions in New York City alone in 2010. But they weren't done by the State, they were the products of individual initiative. Most of us call these free-lance executions "murders." New Yorkers don't have very much to be proud of.

William said...

Milosovic got to live out his days in a jail cell that would rent as a studio apt. in Manhattan for upwards of $1600 month. That Norwegian mass murderer will probably have much nicer accomodations. He'll probably win parole before his 60th birthday. Richard Speck found peace, joy and lots of drugs and sex during his time in captivity. We're imperfect cratures. Life imprisonment creates as many injustices as capital punishment. Some people deserve to die.

KenK said...

Do you read anything else but the NYT? I bet at least one of three on this blog are from them.

Alistair Murray said...

It's a little off: that, surely, you must admit.

bagoh20 said...

For the same reason that the cheer happened, those who would cheer don't give a damn if someone else finds it unsavory. This precious reaction to the cheer is just more of the same shit that provoked the cheer in the first place.

No, I don't feel bad about wanting murdering S.O.B.s to be executed. I find it pretty natural to cheer justice, and the fall of monsters at it's feet. I think those who don't are the ones who need to reflect a little, but nobody ever expects them to. Why is that?

The Crack Emcee said...

bagoh20,

No, I don't feel bad about wanting murdering S.O.B.s to be executed. I find it pretty natural to cheer justice, and the fall of monsters at it's feet. I think those who don't are the ones who need to reflect a little, but nobody ever expects them to. Why is that?

Narcissism is the only form of self-reflection considered now, and that's only so hippies (and their children) can figure out what they want. Why is that? Because they're not dead and we're not allowed to kill them. There hasn't been any real justice in the world since they came into their own.

It'll end when they do.

Lem said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Revenant said...

Allowing a heinous murderer to live their life under care and support of the state is immoral.

If you know he's a heinous murderer, sure.

But usually I don't know that. What I know, usually, is that twelve jurors found him guilty. That ain't good enough.

SJL said...

Titus - Spell check won't help you, but I agree about hotels "excepting" animals. I think it should be like non-smoking rooms. I want a room that has NEVER had a pet stay there.

fleetusa said...

For decades I supported the death penalty. Now, I would like to see it replaced by hard time life prison sentences.

Hard time means no cable TV, no gym, no porn, bland food, minimal a/c, minimal medical care.

If someone gets released from that due to DNA, etc. We could give them social security.

However, I doubt the "elite" would agree to such, therefore, the status quo can stand.

Erik said...

"For decades I supported the death penalty. Now, I would like to see it replaced by hard time life prison sentences."

I'd be content with this as well. I don't have a moral problem with the death penalty, but it still strikes me as being a bit easy on these guys who commit horrible crimes.

I'd still reserve the possibility of execution for the truly heinous, but I'd like to see execution done with exceeding rarity, and with incredibly high standards of proof.

mike said...

"Have I facilitated the death of an innocent human?"---All of these holier-than-thou libs strongly support a woman's right to have an abortion. Therefore, they are all facilitating the deaths of millions innocent humans. I just wish they would spare us their faux outrage over the deaths of vermin in Texas or wherever who end up frying for their heinous crimes.

neomom said...

I would happily give up the idea of the death penalty... As soon as Brian Williams and his smub liberal-elitist ilk give up abortion on demand.

We applauded in our living room as well. The applause was to tell Williams to stuff it, it wasn't about Rick Perry.

master cylinder said...

I always thought there was a heavy Christian sector here. wWong.

master cylinder said...

We have our abortions, y'all have your death penalty.

Richard said...

Interesting, though I wish, Ann, that you would stop mentioning Andrew Sullivan when you write. He's not worthy of it. He's a bore who sees life mainly as a sexual struggle and you do a disservice to the blogosphere when you keep naming him as if he is an authority, albeit an authority you disagree with much of the time. Please, just ignore him.

Fred4Pres said...

The first cheer was a bit off. I do not cheer executions, but I am somewhat sick of having to defend them as some sort of war crime (so I understand why it was given). That said, executions are forever and mistakes can happen, so I do think Texas should review these matters more carefully at the Governor's office level.

G Joubert said...

The cheering did seem out of place, even disconcerting, but my best take on it is the cheering in the audience was not for killing per se, but rather because Perry the governor and Texas the state are willing to carry it out as prescribed by law rather than give in to mushy liberal dogma about it. Conservatives like resoluteness like that.

This from me, a conservative who has serious qualms about capital punishment.

Chase said...

What Richard said.

I believe strongly in the death penalty. I have always supported it.

But I would be willing to compromise and end the death penalty if abortion could be outlawed, except in the immediate life danger to the mother.

Save your breath on the conversation. As Chris Rock said about women being pregnant too often, "Stop Fucking!" Keep the legs closed.


Otherwise, there is nothing to talk about. If "Stop Fucking" isn't realistic enough for you, then you better start working on "Stop Killing" and "Stop Raping" if you want the Death Penalty to stop, because it's never going away in America.

Teri said...

I think the cheering wasn't for the death penalty.

It was for a politician absolutely rejecting political correctness, and giving a forthright answer.

People are wildly delighted to hear a politician who does not give a weaselly, pandering answer.

Oligonicella said...

Palladian --

"Just wondering if I need to purchase body armor or upgrade my ADT service or something."

Only if you feel your virtual persona needs it. I got some excess +80 plate I can sell or swap.

It's like Fen channeling Conan. Gotta make you wonder where their fantasies lead.

4chan is 4chan. Don't look for IQ there.

Synova said...

"I always thought there was a heavy Christian sector here. wWong."

What isn't Christian about capital punishment? No one is denying anyone salvation.

Revenant said...

We have our abortions, y'all have your death penalty.

I've never understood the attempt to draw an equivalence there. It doesn't make sense on any level.

If you think fetuses count as human then your statement amounts to "you kill convicted criminals, we kill babies".

If you think they DON'T count as human then your statement amounts to "we support elective surgery, you kill convicted criminals" -- two completely unrelated actions.

Beldar said...

@ Revenant (9/11/11 3:38 AM): You wrote: "What I know, usually, is that twelve jurors found him [i.e., the hypothetical 'heinous murderer'] guilty. That ain't good enough."

Once again you misrepresent the process, in Texas or anywhere else.

No one is executed without the affirmative participation of a great many more people than just the twelve jurors, although their responsibility is — and is very deliberately designed to be — key to the process.

Before anyone is indicted on a capital crime, prosecutors must first conclude that there is a strong case to be made not just that the defendant committed murder, but that his crime included specified aggravating factors (e.g., killing of a policeman, killing for hire, torture of a child) that can also be proved beyond a reasonable doubt. A grand jury, drawn from the community, must also agree that the case is worthy of the death penalty before an indictment is even returned.

The trial judge will review the indictment and rule upon any challenge to its legal sufficiency at the beginning of the case. Thereafter, the trial judge will continue to assess both the law and the evidence, and by the close of the evidence at trial, the trial judge must conclude that a reasonable jury could, on the basis of that evidence, indeed find guilty beyond a reasonable doubt and aggravating factor(s) beyond a reasonable doubt; otherwise he will grant the defendant's motion for instructed verdict. After the jury's verdict, that process is again repeated.

Then there is a mandatory direct appeal. In Texas, that's going to include at least three appellate judges from the intermediate Court of Appeals level, who collectively review both the trial court's legal rulings and the quantum of evidence. Typically there's at least a possibility to ask for review of that decision by the full en banc Court of Appeals (meaning potential review by another half-dozen or dozen appellate judges of that same court).

Then there's an appeal to the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals — again with three-judge panel and en banc review both available.

Then there's the first shot at the nine Justices of the SCOTUS, on certiorari from the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals.

Next comes the whole habeas corpus process — typically in more than one iteration, as successive waves of defense lawyers come up with new and previously un-urged grounds of defense, procedural objections, ineffective assistance of counsel arguments, etc. That process starts back in Texas state district court (which may or may not be the same judge who heard the trial; typically it's not). There's an opportunity for an evidentiary hearing to explore factual allegations, including new ones, that could have changed the outcome of the trial. From there, it's on again to the intermediate Texas Court of Appeals (in panel and en banc), then again to the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals (in panel and en banc), and potentially to the SCOTUS again.

Thence to the federal habeas corpus process: Once more in a trial court, this time with a federal judge, who has the power to address any open factual issues that the state courts have overlooked or improperly ignored. Then there's an appeal as of right to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit (panel and en banc), and yet another shot at discretionary certiorari review by the SCOTUS.

It's entirely common for a single case to ricochet back and forth between state and federal trial and appellate courts for a decade or more — even in Texas.

And of course, there is an opportunity to seek clemency or pardon — not from the Texas governor, but from the Texas Board of Pardons & Paroles.

You seem to be a smart person, Revenant. If I had to wager, I'd bet that even if only from the last thread on Texas capital punishment in which we engaged in debate, you knew of all these other participants in the process before you wrote your bit of snark about twelve jurors' decision not being good enough.

machine said...

#1: You can support the death penalty without actually cheering for it...it is a grotesque form of punishment...it may be necessary, but it probably shouldn't be celebrated like a touchdown...

#2: How can "Christians" cheer in such instances? And how can "Christians" put someone to death? Even if we call it "justice", is it not a sin? Where is the Biblical exception?

blake said...

machine,

Given that Christian societies have been executing people from the time of Constantine, your understanding would seem to be lacking.

machine said...

Blake, I understand "Christian" societies have been executing people for a long time. This does not make it right and is not a response to my queries...

blake said...

machine,

Sure it is. You asked about Christian reactions and even put in the scare quotes. Given the bulk of Christians over their 2,000 year history do not behave the way you say that they should, the onus is on you to explain what exactly is un-Christian about the death penalty.

By what authority do you challenge longstanding Christian tradition?