Afraid Of Rape in Prison? Don't Commit theCrime

Discussion in 'Ethics, Morality, & Justice' started by goofyfish, Apr 8, 2002.

  1. Adam §Þ@ç€ MØnk€¥ Registered Senior Member

    Reply to Tiassa...

    Last time I checked, 70% of people passing through prisons committed crimes again once released. Often worse crimes. Absolutely, prisons turn petty thieves into truly dangerous bastards. This needs to be worked on in two ways: a prison system as already described, which seperates the violent offenders from the non-violent; and overall social changes which introduce the idea that material wealth isn't so damn great. Of course, for anyone to believe that you actually have to wipe out poverty and starvation.

    Cruelty? How so? Nice to toss out such terms, but how do you possibly arrive at them? I recommend removing from society those already proven to be dangerous to that society's members. And temporarily imprisoning non-violent offenders and giving them opportunities at education and rehabilitation. I'm starting to suspet you have not actually read my posts but like to toss out this rhetoric just for a laugh.

    A figure of speech. I have made quite clear in other threads why I do not like capital punishment.

    All covered quite extensively, and many times over for you. Those who are non-violent get education and rehabilitation if they want it. If they commit crimes again, they go back in.

    Again, I have covered my position on capital punishment thoroughly in other threads. Again, I must assume you simply do not read what people post. Maybe you are too eager to skip past it all and make your points, such as this one. I had thought better of you. But this entire paragraph of yours clearly says "I have not read, or choose to ignore, everything you have said about your position on capital punishment".

    I'm not sure about the laws there, but here, as long as the ID has been checked, it is not the responsibility of the bar or its staff. I don't see that they've broken any laws, at least not our laws. Not sure about there. As for the guy you know, his behaviour, well, maybe picking up drunk girls for a shag upon first meeting them is an indication of poor judgement in general. Maybe he's not a nice chap. Maybe he's a great chap. I don't know. But those laws, as I said, are there to protect young people from older people. They need to exist. The girl should have been charged for possessing and using a fake ID. Maybe also charged as a minor for unlawful sexual activity, whatever it's called there. Of course for her to be charged in such a manner, her unwillingness would have to be proven. What this comes down to, if you wish to void the standing laws designed to protect children, is that you need to scan peoples' brains and discover their thoughts and motives regarding the events. Would that not violate your ideas on civili rights?

    As you know (I hope), it's very schoolyard-ish when people put such things in their posts. It indicates only negative personality traits. In future, perhaps you should refrain from poking your tongue out and calling people names, and just stick to the material at hand. But then, I recall in our first discussion, when I mentioned the abstract concepts involved in the USA's actions in Afghanistan, you read the words the way you wanted and assumed I thought the USA was a paragon of virtue. This type of interpretation is something I try not to do, as it is rarely productive.
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  3. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    What, are you or I in Singapore? Or is the term "human rights" a mere slogan in Australia, too? Concrete boxes, reduced spending? I've got this perverse image in my head, from the movie Airplane: Jimmy, have you ever been inside a Turkish prison? How low do you spend? Something about concrete boxes?

    Hmmm ... nearly $4 billion a year to incarcerate the rapists on college campuses in the United States ... a drug war that merely starts with millions of people smoking dope ... that prison cost will eventually suck up the economy. At some point, we have to economize. Just expand the application of the death penalty, then, if human rights are of no real concern.

    Ooh, how about bamboo cages, outdoors in the winter? It's probably cheaper than concrete boxes.

    Cruelty is the end result of what you propose.
    Well? How low do you spend on the maximum-security prisons? Even accommodating human rights has a financial price. I take it removing from society, in the cases of the violent offenders, is permanent, then? Well and fine. Now, what's the point of that? Anything short of permanent incarceration for any criminal will require that they be reintroduced into society at some point. Thus, since you keep insisting on your distinction, well?

    And why would I not read your posts? It's not like they're particularly long or deal with particularly difficult concepts. And that's what I find so bothersome about your proposed solution. It's far too simplistic. For instance:
    Why, then, advocate conditions that make it the preferable alternative?

    Consider, for instance, the present situation in the United States. Take, for instance, Aaron McKinney, convicted in the murder of Matthew Shepherd. In order to ensure that he never leaves prison, he was sentenced to two life terms in a special agreement by which the victim's family requested that the court not sentence him to death. Essentially, a "life sentence" does not mean you're in for the rest of your life. Typically, once you are deemed too old to be of any danger, you are paroled in order to reduce your impact on the state budget. This is also, apparently, considered a humane gesture. Of course, when you're sentenced to "25 years to life" for having drugs, it's definitely a humane gesture to parole the guy or give him amnesty as soon as possible. But that's beside the point.

    What do we seek, though, when we choose to incarcerate a person for the rest of their natural life instead of simply terminate them?

    And why, then, reduce that existence to something so animal? Is it really a craving inside us to enjoy that revenge? It is, as you pointed out, expensive revenge. So, then, how low would you like the expense to be? Half that? A quarter? If they're never coming out and we're submitting them to a subhuman existence, it seems more reasonable to simply put them to death. I, too, am an opponent of capital punishment, but I am a proponent of human dignity under all circumstances.

    I suppose we could take all those hardened, violent criminals to an island somewhere and just leave them. That might work, eh? That way they're out of our society, our financial obligation is lessened, and we don't ever have to ask ourselves why we're locking people up in little concrete boxes.
    Yes, yes, yes, but I don't think it's covered adequately. After all, didn't I read somewhere that
    Why are you focusing on the murderers and rapists? Oh, they get out of prison sometimes? Well, I think we've solved that with little concrete boxes or the executioner's star. But I think neither you nor I would expect the rehabilitation and education of the nonviolent criminals to be volunteered to the state. It's nice to focus one's contempt toward murderers and rapists, but not all of 'em ar ein for that, right?
    And now I shall turn the accusation back at you. What was the point of compressing that citation as you did?

    • The line about hanging the rapists points well toward your poor regard for this topic. You know, how you took issue with the notion that you're flippant toward the death penalty?

    • Your inadequate answer pertains to your insistence on narrowing down the topic to murderers and rapists the way you did in your initial response to my three pointed questions. I still don't know why you insist on narrowing your perspective and then pointing out your broader perspective. Despite the fact that your proposed solution is inadequate, unless it's just another flippant figure of speech, I wonder why you're so focused on the murderers and rapists whom you would wish to treat worse than death. To simply declare a point covered and pointles is ... here, let me borrow a term from you: school-yardish. You chose a generalized point that I don't think is appropriate within the framework of the considerations. And, all things considered, I'm having trouble reconciling the notion that what you have apparently covered the pointless point with is a proposition that makes capital punishment a better alternative for both sides.

    • Your demonstrated failure to grasp the situation pertains to your statutory-rape paragraph, which now overlooks the nature of your proposed solution. At least half the judges he could have come across would have either acquitted him, thrown out a jury's conviction, or reduced the conviction to a much lesser charge. But no ... a concrete box for a guy whose only crime appears to be not having a direct connection to Oregon's Department of Motor Vehicles.

    • What, pray tell, does this have to do with anything? I'm inclined to ask that question again, considering that odd citation of yours. But this refers to the fact that your statutory-rape response had nothing to do with the paragraph you were responding to.
    I'll compress this one to a simple question which you seem to be missing entirely: How the f--k are you supposed to know how old a female is if she's drinking on an ID that gets her through the door of the bar you're at? Hello? What, the bar gets away with serving a minor because they thought she was old enough but the guy gets sent up for having sex with her while believing her to be old enough? That belief being fostered by ... what? Oh, her deception?

    And that's a great idea, too: let's charge as many people with crimes as possible. Unlawful sexual activity for a minor? Yeah, I don't care about your prison classifications on this one: she doesn't go to prison. Well, now that he has, I'm perfectly willing to send her for a civil rights violation.

    Void the standing laws to protect children? Where on earth do you get that?! :bugeye:
    Well, how patient would you like me to be? I personally find your statutory-rape response offensive in its irrelevance. Please, don't bug me with such moralistic, high-minded crap as the above-cited paragraph. You aren't treating this topic particularly seriously, you're advocating conditions more cruel than that which you oppose, and you accuse me of not reading your posts while absolutely blowing mine out your left ear. Give me a break

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    Oh, that's right, I forgot such things are inappropriate for you.

    The consistency with which you're missing the point indicates that it's deliberate. Why deliberate? Because our past conversations have not hinted that you're actually as stupid as your statutory-rape response, and because our past conversations have indicated that you're capable of seeing the greater ramifications of what might seem like a good idea, e.g. concrete boxes, reductions of prison spending on severe criminals (a necessary lowering of prison conditions). Geez, Adam, what is your difficulty with this one?

    I'll have to dig up the Afghanistan post. In the meantime, either give better attention to the portions of my posts you choose to read and respond to or don't bother. And stuff the hypocritical, moralistic crap back where it belongs, please.

    Concrete boxes ... and you oppose capital punishment.

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    How low, Adam? What number is satisfactory to you? Help me clear that up, since your concrete boxes bit might be just another flippant figure of speech, and I might be seeing too severe a degree of reduction of spending as noted in your proposed solution.

    Oh, and as a final note, I've been banging around in my head the notion that cultural differences might be interfering in our communication. The bit about ID's and bars, however, suggests otherwise. Maybe nobody ever goes to prison unjustly in Australia. Maybe people aren't convicted of crimes they didn't commit in Australia. Maybe Australians are smart enough to not house non-violent criminals with violent criminals, and maybe they haven't learned how to arbitrarily classify crimes in accord with sentiment. Please understand, it's not that I'm ignoring your proposed solution, but that its implementation on our side of the ocean is a hideous nightmare.


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  5. Adam §Þ@ç€ MØnk€¥ Registered Senior Member

    Re-hashing and clarification

    A possibility for a reasonable prison system:

    Have several classes of prisons, with different levels of expenditure per prisoner. This would hopefully prevent the state spending more on a serial killer's welfare than my father makes in an entire year.


    - Strictly non-violent criminals. Possibly also those who commit crimes where harm is extremely doubtful or the prisoner goes in on a technicality alone, such as in the case of the young girl with the fake ID.
    - Education, rehabilitation, reasonable living conditions. Good monitoring services. For prisoner safety, monitor everywhere. No privacy, but hey, they're in jail because they screwed people over. They can deal with it for a while. Possibly have an independent body monitor the entire system, at their own expense, such as Amnesty International.

    - Violent offenders who have caused physical or emotional harm, but not of a permanent nature. Break someone's spine by drinking and driving, you go in here. Beat someone with a stick and take their eye out, you go in here.
    - Again have monitoring everywhere, and again allow supervision by an independent agency. Spend less than Class One on education and such. Keep it above the minimum requirements of internatiponal law, but don't blow excess money on them.

    - Violent offenders who have caused permanent physical and emotional damage.
    - Keep it above minimum requirements of international law, but no more. A room, food and water, exercise. No internet, no large screen TVs, no extraneous expenses. They deliberately harmed society; society has no obligation to provide them luxuries. Allow independent bodies to provide luxuries if they wish, as long as the public is not forced to pay for it.


    What is wrong with reduced spending? You say the words as though they represent a disease or such. Reduced spending on a state's necessities is a good thing. A state is in bad health when standing expenses continually increase. As for the images you hold in your head, that is not my fault or my concern. How low do you spend? As covered above in Class Three.

    I don't know why you point this out to me in particular. These figures indicate no flaw with my ideas, but rather a huge flaw with the USA. And once again, I do not support the death penalty.

    In all that rhetoric, you have yet to explain how. In almost every post you make, you demand (and yes, you have used the word "demand") explanations from people. Your turn.

    The point is to protect the people who don't go about hurting others for their own gratification. Very simple.

    As explained several times. If they hurt people permanently, they suffer a permanent consequence. That's called justice. If they hurt people temporarily, they suffer a temporary punishment. Nice and fair.

    Indeed. I find it best, for the good of all, to make points briefly and simply, to be understood by the lowest common denominator. If it takes ten pages to make a point that can be made in one sentence, you are probably doing something wrong.

    If those who have permanently injured others prefer suicide to their permanent incarceration, that is their choice. I would not take away that little bit of ultimate free will. That makes me a lot nicer than someone who takes away a person's life or sense of security without asking, such as a murderer or rapist.

    Death is not my preference. Justice is. If you take someone's life, you lose yours; not through more death, but through incarceration.

    I'd be happy for serial killers to live in the Hilton hotel if the security was adequate and it did not come out of the state's pockets. As before: spend the bare minimum to keep living conditions adequate to suit international laws. The public should be under no obligation to spend more than that on people who tried to hurt them.

    I wish I could tell you about a certain person who might change your mind about this, at least regarding certain types of criminals. But I can't, it's not my place to tell. I will say, however, that there are some individuals who deserve nothing good at all from anyone.

    Well, it's been done so many times before. Occasionally with very productive results: Australia. Although to us they also sent petty thieves and such. The only problem is where? Sacrifice some of your own territory for these people, or ask someone else to take them? If the loss of the territory you sacrifice ends up costing the state less than the expense of imprisoning these people, then I see only one problem with it. They would still be considered under that state's jurisdiction unless the state ceded all sovereign rights to that land, and as such might be required to look after them by international law. The expenses would then not end unless the land was given away. For strategic purposes, that land would then have to be far away, else you invite another state to simply walk in and set up shop on your doorstep. Overall, if the state can simply dump them elsewhere, it is preferable to both the death penalty and permanent incarceration. The state's only continuing duty is then in customs and border-control, ensuring the person does not enter the country. Inform all other nations of the person's identity, criminal record, and location and they'll probably keep him/her out too. They won't have many places to go, but they'll be free to make of life what they will. Personally I don't think they should be rewarded for their crimes with such freedom. But since you brought it up...

    Just wondering why you insisted on mentioning the death penalty all the ime.

    I believe I covered this as well, when I mentioned the girl being charged with possession and use of a fake ID. How are you supposed to know? Maybe brainscans. Some courts in the USA are allowing them now I believe. If the defendent did not know, and the girl used a fake ID, the guy walks free. And yes, the bar does get away with it. The bar is not responsible for perfect testing of all IDs which pass through.

    I try to rarely allow morals and emotions into these posts. They distract from logic. 1+1=2. Take a life, lose your life. Although it does happen now and then. I'm sorry if you allow emotions to colour what you read so that you find this offensive, but once again, I can not be at fault for the images in your head.

    I would bet your left nut that you have very little idea what is or isn't appropriate for me.

    Indeed, "concrete boxes" represents, in my usage, the least expense which meets the requirements of international law.

    Nice assumption there.
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  7. *stRgrL* Kicks ass Valued Senior Member


    Thanks for your understanding. After my post, I was hoping you wouldnt take it like I was mad or anything. I was just trying to provide a little insight from the other side. And it is a subject I feel strongly about, I watch people throw their lives away and then try to put the blame on their "hard lives" - which isnt right.


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    Groove on
  8. Counterbalance Registered Senior Member

    “Well here’s a thought,” Counterbalance offered foolishly.

    Adam & Tiassa,

    It’s obvious that you both have wit, wisdom and “spirit.“ Any chance you could mix all of this into a proposal for a solution? Keeping in mind that this will call for some compromising on both sides, and with full realization that no one ever really wants to compromise... I mean, sure. It’s only Sciforums and you can pound on each other for the helluva it. You can stick to your guns. But how are any of the world’s most pressing problems ever going to be fixed? What’s the priority here? To bitch? Or to do something?

    There’s been some interesting suggestions offered on this thread. LOTS of food for thought. Is it just not appealing to anybody to try to work with this?


  9. Adam §Þ@ç€ MØnk€¥ Registered Senior Member

    *Adam smacks Counterbalance over the head with a giant frying pan*

    Compromise this!

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  10. Asguard Kiss my dark side Valued Senior Member


    you have been reading Xev's stuff to much, Now you even SOUND like her

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  11. Counterbalance Registered Senior Member

    Deny you? Never!! It’s just that I’ve come to know a few dragons in my time. Two things I’ve learned about “old” dragons: (1) The older they get, the craftier they get. (2) A dragon never loses his ability to belch fire. Oh, and one more... (3) The leading cause of death for dragons is self-conflagration!

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    So take care there, “sparky“ ...

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    Yo Adam!

    I got yer compromise, buckeroo...

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  12. Asguard Kiss my dark side Valued Senior Member


    That was THREE things
    oh well back to prep for you

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  13. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    Concrete boxes and other considerations

    Though I would not permit such conditions in my own country without protest, I fully accept your revision of the prison classifications in terms of our debate.
    I point it out to you because you lamented the amount spent on prisoners each year. And while I recognize your declaration that you do not support capital punishment, I still feel that the prior conditions described by your classification of prisons allowed such indecent conditions that capital punishment would be morally acceptable compared to what you proposed. Your revised condition, while I still find it unsatisfactory for implementation in the United States for a couple of reasons, does recognize human rights directly and, well, I'm not going to complain about that.

    The couple of reasons, though, might strictly reflect American justice. We classify crimes inappropriately, and often sentences are reduced in light of the Eighth Amendment, and convictions are often overturned because, if you'd read the FAMM site, at least, or even the Beets material, you'd find that justice is not blind, there is no equal protection under the law except in theory, and how much money you have makes all the difference in the world.

    (1) Which use of the word "demand" are you referring to?

    • Since you simply note that I use the word demand, here's a search of my use of the word; there's 109 results (not counting this present post) for you to consider, and I would like to know which one you are referring to. I'm not going to contest that responding to my posts can be more demanding than some posters are willing to put up with, but which one would you like me to explain to you?

    (2) Okay--your revised prison classifications are a big help toward resolving the difficulties I have with your position. Easy enough? Concrete boxes for the rest of one's life? Cruel and unusual. At that point, it would be more merciful to kill them. Your revised conditions, however, while I disagree with their implementation in my own society due to the nature of how and why we put people in prison, In fact, your new class 1 presents an interesting question with its "technicality[/i] note. Are you still talking about putting the girl in prison, or are you saying ignorance of her true age in the face of deception is no excuse under the law? Well, guess what: one of the reasons prisoners have the "luxury" of education and other resources is in case they would like to appeal their conviction and have grounds to do so. By stripping those tools away, the only conclusion I can find is that, should evidence arise that the convict is actually innocent, then ignorance is not bliss and everyone from the arresting officers to the prosecuting attorney to the judge and jury needs to go to jail for hurting an innocent person by their actions. It's a result of the conditions you're describing, on the one hand. If you're talking about throwing the girl in prison for using a fake ID and getting laid, I think psychiatric counseling would do best. But, yes, she should go to prison for being a part of why that particular guy got sent up. Her dad, too.
    True enough. The United States is already the world's foremost prison-state. I wonder what the 65-and-older prison would look like. Now then, forty years in a concrete box is a far cry from forty years of minimal human rights recognition. I still find it to be cruel given the nature of justice in my own country, but that's why we have the Eighth Amendment. What's your definition of permanent hurt, though? Physical only or physical and mental?
    I find it best to try to cover a broad perspective. It does, quite often, allow me to reach issues that prevent me having to revise the standard upon which I enter a debate and to which I repeatedly demand that people refer regardless of what they're actually saying. Oh, well. It's a mere difference of methodology.
    Ah, the old, lets treat them cruelly and if they don't like it they can kill themselves response? Wait ... it's not that old. But it is quite ridiculous. And, yes, you're a lot nicer ...

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    All I can say is you'd better be damn sure that you're sentencing for the right thing. Consider Betty Lou Beets--yes, she killed someone, but the jury that convicted her and resulted in her death sentence never got to hear about the physical abuse wrought upon her by her husband, and never got to see the photos taken after she received beatings. Indeed, what her husband began, Texas finished.
    Ah, drawing out the process of dying as long as possible.
    Funny, the public, given a chance, frequently votes to raise their prison expenses. Mandatory minimums have that effect. The privatization of prisons is currently under review; it sounds cheaper but it may not be, since the state has to pay rent instead of directly administrating the prisons.
    Unless I happen to be God I have no right to make that determination of my fellow human being. And, since I'm not God ....
    Well, you know, we bought Alaska for a ridiculously-low price. Monitoring them would be no different in the Aleutians than, say, any other place our warships cruise past every once in a while. And the cost of removing people who are already there? What's the cost of a military operation? Considerably less than buying them out, and what is the greater trend in the United States' history?

    As a matter of fact, a local tribe did that recently; I forget what the crime actually was, but instead of sending two teenagers to prison, the tribal council intervened, claimed jurisdiction, and sentenced them both to a period of surviving on an empty island. People applauded that decision. It builds character, they say.
    And what, pray tell, does that have to do with the cited text? A couple of different posts and also a question asked in response to your statutory-rape digression?
    Okay, point resolved for my purposes. Even into the beginning of the post I'm responding to, you're not clear on what happens to the guy. Alright, now that you are clarifying, please skip the "I believe I covered this already" idea since it's only at this point in your post that you're actually covering the issue.

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    Yes, but in this case, you could well include logic. And yes, you are guided by your emotions. Eye-for-an-eye is an emotional response, and not always a well-considered intellectual response. As noted, to imprison someone permanently and deny them resources beyond the minimum of conventional human rights, you'd better be damn sure of what you're convicting someone of and why.
    Well, you're the one who complained about my rolling of the eyes (I think you said poking out your tongue) being inappropriate. And I noticed that you didn't bet your own left nut. Hmmm ... probably a good thing. But no, I wouldn't want it anyway. However, I was merely recognizing your standard of debate.
    I'd have to read the policy on what kind of concrete boxes the nations have agreed to, but if you say so ... :bugeye:
    I don't find it an assumption. After all, you did demonstratively miss the point with your statutory-rape responses until you finally cleared them up in the post I'm responding to. And you did eventually revise your written standard of prison classifications, which shows me that you are indeed starting to grasp the situation. Now, I'm off to find the International Concrete Box Conventions.

    Of course, once I agree to the Concrete Boxes, I'll have to fight to amend the US Constitution.

    thanx much,

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  14. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member


    That's something I think everybody who ever gets into a deeper debate here thinks about at one time or another. In general, four things strike me:

    • To disseminate information to others (spread the word)
    • To examine one's own standards, morals, &c.
    • To change someone's perspective.
    • To affirm one's own standards, morals, &c.

    There are of course, other reasons. I learn a great deal about people through Sciforums debates, despite how I myself might apply the above four points in my own posts. Some people--okay, I'll leave the religious debates out of it, but there are, I suppose reasons, for some of the pointlessness that goes on in that forum. Not a fan of them, but if I leave the reasons and justifications to each person regarding their own presence here, yeah, I can see a reason for it.

    What's really funny is that your dragon bit to Chagur actually has me thinking about evolution, mythology, and the structure of the human eye. So there's that, too ... the undeniable weave of all things. I think we all learn more from one another than we realize. Of course, that's true in life, too.

    thanx much,

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  15. Chagur .Seeker. Registered Senior Member

    Counterbalance ...

    Thank you for your observations ... and just to put you concern to rest,
    if there be one, I began wearing Nomex long johns a good while ago.

    Take care

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  16. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    From the Arizona Republic

    Inmate saved by DNA dives into life, political debate, from the Arizona Republic newspaper:
    Death row aside, the alternative could have been a concrete box?

    And a link to a Richard Ruelas editorial from the same newspaper:
    My only question is how easy would it be for a man like Krone to fight for his life from a concrete box?


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  17. Adam §Þ@ç€ MØnk€¥ Registered Senior Member


    I don't see how I revised them. You should be a politician.

    I have absoltuely no intention of readingthrough 109 posts inlcuding the word "demand".

    Ignorance of a girl's age alone can not be a valid defence under a standardised, equitable law. If it was, a forty-year-old man could rape a three year old girl and say to the judge "Sorry, your honour, I thought she was twenty-five." Obviously an excessive example to make apoint. Ignorance is not a very good defence. Once again, it would need to be proven, possibly by brain-scans.I can't recall the name of the technique currently being used in some places in courts, but I do recall the proponents in New Scientist magazine saying it was morereliable than fingerprints. I don't have the magazines with me here at university, so unfortunately I can't dig up all the info. However, once again, I'm not sure I like the idea of taking a first step down theroad tolegal brain-tapping/mind-reading.

    Personal insults aside, I would suggest fines and/or community service.

    I heard somewhere that around one-quarter of the entire world's prison inmates are in the USA. Quite silly. A very good indicator that the system there does not work. I suppose it is understandable why you have the attitudes you seem to, coming from that background.

    Permanent physical injury needs no further definition. Mental wouldbebest left for definition by more qualified people than me, psychologistsperhaps. But I would think anything resulting from a crime which alters a person's behaviour permanently, or such. For example agirl I know who was raped, she rarely goes out anywhere, never alone,and she barely trusts anyone. She also has an eating disorder which put her in hospital earlier this year. I would consider that permanent mental injury.

    The United Nations Human Rights Commission would seem to disagree with you. As mentioned before, I recommend a prison system in accordance with their guidelines.

    As for Betty Lou Beets, did the photographs of her apparent abuse actually exist? I do not know the case. However, here in Melbourne several years ago, there was a test case introducing laws regarding whatthey call "batteredd wife syndrome". A woman killed her husband, and claimed he had beaten her badly for years. She spent two weeks in prison. As I recall, there was absolutely no evidence to support her claims, and all the character witnessesclaimed there was never any sign of anything wrong. Basically she got away with murder because the courts (the politicians) wanted to introduce these new laws, set a precedent. Evidence is a good thing.

    We are all dying, if you want to look at it that way. There is no difference in that regard if they are in prison or free. The state is not reducing their lifespan at all, merely removing the danger they represent from society.

    We have the opposite situation here. I believe most Australians wantless spent on criminals. As for mandatory minimum sentences, I believe that was tried here in the Northern Territory as a test, and everyonecomplained about the ridiculous results; I think the entire idea is being dumped, not sure. Our prisons here are being privatised,the resonsibility is now moving to private companies, and they are watched by a government agency and various lobby groups. I believe the first company to take on a prison near Melbourne wants to pull out of the deal, as it's a lot harder than they expected.

    Well, I never understood that position. One, I'm an atheist. Two, I firmly believe it is not only our right but our duty to judge each other. If such was not the case, there would have been no reason whatsoever to fight against Hitler. Judge not, and ye shall be crapped upon.

    If you don't like brain-scans and truth drugs, I suggest he does some time. Preferably in minimum security, something like the Class One system I presented. Why? See point A well above. Ignorance alone can not be a valid defence unless proven, maybe not even then. I would prefer, however, that such a sentence might be voided if the girl made a full confession and it was proven that the guy was duped. That would be fair.

    I don't see wheremy logic has failed. Please point it out. I don't suggest these possibilities for eye-for-an-eye, but for a reasonable and fair solution. I see it as fair that a society should be protected from those who deliberately harm it.

    I'm not crazy.

    As for concrete boxes - again - I refer to the minimum agreed upon standards for imprisonment of criminals.
  18. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    Left nuts?

    Well ...
    As compared to:
    (Dates reflect GMT-8)

    I see a maybe removed from Class One, as well as an additional bit about harm being doubtful and technicalities.

    In Class Three I see room, not little concrete box. Furthermore, your revised Class Three says above minimum requirements of international law, whereas your defense of little concrete boxes, which, as you noted, meets the requirements of international law. In other words, the standard of little concrete boxes is apparently kept at the level of minimum requirements, not above

    I do, in fact, see revisions in your proposed classifications.
    Well, I figured the post you were referring to would be in there. Since you already knew where it was, I made the mistake of assuming you could easily pull it out of there. Since your point was my demanding nature (not necessarily contested) and my use of the word "demand" (contested), would I be mistaken, then, to conclude that your reinforcement of your point that I demand with the note that even I use the word demand is either utterly invalid or a simple contextual mix-up?
    What kind of an "excessive" example is this? Quite frankly, Adam, if the 3 year-old looks enough like the ID photo that says she's 22, there's a great problem afoot. What would you like, then? For every male to request of a female sexual partner legal proof of age? What, then, constitutes legal proof? Hello? Hello? Cripes, man, she had fraudulent identification that passed muster!

    What more is needed, Adam? I mean, sure, the brain-scan seems a reasonable idea :bugeye: but on the one hand, we're speaking of an American crime where such search-and-seizure is not allowed, and furthermore, who can afford it?
    Sure, I'll chalk that one up to the inadequacy of my words. So, to correct,

    • If you're talking about throwing the girl in prison for using a fake ID and getting laid, I (would counter by asserting that) psychiatric counseling (for the girl) would do best (as opposed to prison). (And this is assuming that anyone needs to be "punished" at all for this.)
    And we do, indeed, have various classes of prisons. Maximum, medium, minimum, and "federal". ("Federal" minimum-security prisons are where you run into the tennis courts and so forth; rather than sending the guy who mugged your grandma to that prison, they would send the guy who stole her life savings through embezzlement or fraud to that prison.)
    The primary issue I'm going to put up is a guy named Dr James Grigson, also known in the US as "Doctor Death". A medical doctor and psychiatrist, Grigson has made a bit of a name for himself going from trial to trial to recommend the death penalty; mind you, his record is clear--that this patient is not psychiatrically dysfunctional and therefore should not be spared capital considerations is his standard answer. When you want to make sure an insanity plea doesn't go through, you call Doctor Death. To bring this back from capital punishment into the realm we're discussing, any attorney can find a psychiatrist who will debunk the psychological dysfunction of anyone, defendant or victim. I've heard psychiatrists testify that the rape survivor was lying because she couldn't remember the exact details of the incident. Of course, I've also heard a judge acquit a man of rape because the child didn't scream loudly enough. One would think, goes the reasoning, that somebody in the house would have heard, and stopped it.

    Of people who have been raped ... and here I know many. Much of their recovery rests with their family and community. I still cringe when I think of a girl who cried on my shoulder, apologizing that she wasn't a virgin our first time together. All things considered, I put the weight of that wrongness not only on the father that raped her, but on the community that made virginity such a prize and obsession. Love should have been all that counted, right? Virginity? Of course, this is a post-Puritan malady that runs rampant in the United States, and I've long made the argument that our puritanistic obsession with the immorality of sex is problematic and causal.
    Well, at least we're up to a room now. Like I said, I'll have to do some reading on the conventions of concrete boxes.
    Well, I'm going to withdraw the Beets point until I find those photos. I've seen them; they're horrible. But several of the websites devoted to saving her life closed up after her death. I've mailed a couple of organizations that worked on her behalf asking where the pictures have gone to. So, for the time being, that does us no real good, does it? On the other hand, when I do find them again, I'll make sure to resurrect the topic. Unless, of course, such considerations make no difference. I agree that evidence is a good thing. But, as you see from the articles pertaining to Mr Krone, evidence does not necessarily work. Actually, I should explain that briefly: in his second trial, evidence that was, for some reason, not introduced during his first trial was presented to the jury--the presence of blood not matching Mr Krone or the victim. Also, the bite-match is considered among the least-reliable matching processes and is only a factor when the prosecution has little or nothing else. Even in an American civil trial, where a "preponderance of evidence" is needed, the presence of the blood should have turned the trial to Mr Krone's favor. In a criminal trial, a jury is only supposed to convict if they believe "beyond any reasonable doubt" that the defendant is guilty.
    Given that you've repeatedly noted the cost of incarceration, given that you're seeking a standard that, in the United States, is considered abhorrent, it isn't so much a matter of being in prison or being free. Rather, it is about dignity and suffering. To draw out the dying process as I've put it is to spend large amounts of money keeping a person in discomfort who will never be free again.
    I see a dichotomy 'twixt our positions here in the notion of money spent on prisons as compared to spent on criminals. It's a slight distinction. People in this country think that by incarcerating more people for longer times while providing less rehabilitation and education, we'll have a better result from our prisons. Nonetheless, it's getting more and more expensive.
    The point actually was that, unless I am "God", I do not know the entirety of what has taken place. A jury that did not hear of physical abuse? A lawyer failing to introduce evidence?
    I'll only make the point that it's usually the judgemental people doing the crapping.
    Okay, well ... here's the thing ... I need to know from you what reasonable measure he can go to. Consider, please, the conditions: You are in a bar, drinking. A woman in the bar comes and orders a drink. Her ID is checked by the bartender, who nods, hands it back to her, and begins pouring your drink. At this point, if she is under the age of 21 in Oregon, she is not supposed to be inside this bar. Furthermore, just to get in, she has passed a doorman who is supposed to be checking ID's. Typically, even at 28, I get my ID checked three times in a bar where I'm not known. Even in the bars where they know me by name, they are required to check my ID at least once, as the law requires that I have that ID on me while drinking. (In the case that I "forgot" my ID, the bartender might get a warning from the police for not checking it, but I would face the criminal charge. In the case that I am a minor drinking without an ID and nobody checked me, booth the bar and I face charges.) Now ... you're an average working guy. Do you have a computer with you that you can log into the local licensing department, hack their system, and verify that the number on that ID is valid? To lead to a point from that paragraph that I haven't cited or addressed yet:
    It's just that at this point, I don't see how you can convict the guy. What can he reasonably do to validate the age?
    Is it logical to conclude, then, that what is represented in a court is what actually happened? Is it logical to conclude that all people convicted of a specific crime have, in fact, done the same thing? It's speculative and generalized.
    Nobody's suggesting that we don't protect society from those who deliberately harm it. But, to the other, you're suggesting that of the more violent criminals who might get out of prison (e.g. Class Two), we should spend less money preparing them for their re-entry to society than we should the better-educated people who statistically fall under Class One.

    As an interesting note: How many grades of criminal charge are there in Australia for actions resulting in the death of another person? Does the guy who steals a little girl from her home, ties her up in the trunk of his car, takes her to a remote field, has his way and then kills her the same as the mother who accidentally runs down someone with her car because she's trying to hush the kids and just doesn't see the poor guy in time?

    And before you suggest that you've already covered that point with your prison classifications, I also want to point out that there are classifications of the charge

    So while manslaughter might exist for the mother who runs the guy down accidentally, and thus she'll only spend 10 to 15 years in prison, and the murder charge for the guy who deliberately terminates another's life in malice, something else happens also. What if the state knows they have their man, and can prove that this person's actions resulted in the death of another, but cannot prove the charge of murder because motive turns out to be a fuzzy issue? How, then, when "pleading down" a suspect in order to at least get him or her off the streets for a while (and thus protect society) do you separate the wheat from the chaff? How, then, do you protect a Class Two prisoner when Class Two prisons have populations among them including Class One prisoners who pled out or was convicted of a lesser charge? What of the difference between defendants of similar crimes whereby one has more money, and therefore a better lawyer? Public defenders (the guaranteed representation of the poor in our Miranda Act) have notorious reputations. Sleeping during the trial, failing to introduce evidence ...
    Neither are you making much of a bet if you're not willing to stake something of your own. It's always easy to risk someone else's, right? Especially when you might lose the bet?

    I mean, I was only reflecting what you'd already established, so I hardly think I was beside the point to note that it was inappropriate.

    What else that isn't yours would you like to wager?
    Yes, and that's why we've upgraded to a room?

    Meet or exceed?


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  19. Adam §Þ@ç€ MØnk€¥ Registered Senior Member

    More interesting, delving into grey areas

    First off, that looks more like elaboration than revision, with the intent of clarification, which was requested. As explained, concrete box always referred to minimal legal condition. And no, not above that minimum. The people should not be required to pay for the luxuries of murderers. A state does not have the right to demand that from its people.

    No, I don't recall where/when you "demand"ed someone explain something. It was about two weeks ago I think, if that helps.

    Three years old, fifteen, whatever. The point is that ignorance can not be a valid legal excuse unless absolutely proven. Otherwise all thsoe date-rapist college jocks would simply walk into court and say "Sorry dude, she looked 25", and that would be the end of it.

    What would I like? I would quite like a world in which people got to know their prospective sexual partners rather than shagging hither and thither on a whim. You may have noticed there are several terminal, contagious diseases roaming the globe, spread largely though sexual activity.

    As for the brains-scan thing, I'm not sure I like it. On the one hand it could prove innocence in court, which is great. Ont the other, its introduction and acceptance sets a very dangerous precedent. If it became common, how long would it be until the customs agents at airports install more developed devices which can, to some degree, determine a person's emotional state based on heat in the face and such? After that, maybe we'd see them somewhere else. Maybe anyone who is upset some day might be hauled in by the police and interrogated.

    We also have a Doctor Death in Australia, and I believe he went to prison after his first known assisted suicide. Not sure.

    That judge needs to be removed from office and possibly put in prison. He might even need his nuts kicked in. There have been cases like that here as well, and they tend to give me the idea that we need some standardised penalties for various acts.

    As for the virginity thing, I was under the impression that some anthropologists thought it had something to do with selection for reproduction, evolution, all that. A man would be more attracted to a virgin because there would be less chance of his offspring through her having competition from her other offspring carrying someone else's genes. On the other hand, I know the crazy religious standards play a role, and many people have covered in other threads anything I might want to say about that.

    I'm not sure if we have the "beyond any reasonable doubt" thing in Australian law. I would hope so. But the case I mentioned, with the women getting only two weeks for murder, would seem to suggest otherwise. Unless the legal system was railroaded for political reasons entirely...

    Permanent incarceration is abhorrent in the USA, is it? This coming from death-penalty land?

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    You mention discomfort. Opposite of comfort. This girl I know who was raped, what duty has she to keep a rapist in comfort? The state can not ask her to keep such a man in comfort. It can, I think, ask her to foot some of the bill for keeping society safe from him, ie locking him up.

    As for the money spent on the prison system and on criminals, I believe the figures they present here on the news and such are simply total money spent on prisons divided by number of prisoners.

    I'd say it's also the judgemental people trying to stop it. Again, WW2.

    Oh, I don't know... Maybe some measure of restraint and control? Isn't that better than letting himself get into the situation he's in? It is not up to the bar staff to police fake IDs. It's up to the police. Although here a bar does have th right to toss out someone they believe is using a fake ID. This right is protected under the idea that the business has the right to refuse service to anyone they choose (a right which has been crapped on in courts since the growth-spurt of political correctness).

    An odd thing about your laws requiring drinkers be checked for ID. When I was 19, I had quite a good time in the pubs and clubs around Los Angeles, and the only ID I carried was my legitimate Victorian driving permit.

    Maybe nothing. Maybe that's why he should have spent some time gettign to know her first, rather than trusting his future to his base urges.

    Absolutely. Our courts are supposedly based on this very idea. I know this is not strictly the case. But what would you base a court system on? What happened? Or what didn't happen? Or what might have happened in fairy-land? Seems to me the whole thing has to be based on what happened. Legal systems here work from that basis. The lawyers represent different stories, and try to support their claims with evidence. I know it's not perfect, but there are many checks and balances in place, and evidence is still an important requirement in most cases.

    Absolutely. A state can not ask its people to pay more for those who have hurt them more.

    Not sure, I'll ask a law student friend later if I see gim.

    To me, the only motive which might mitigate murder is self-defence, or defence of someone in imminent danger. If not defence, the person goes in the clink. Of course this does not cover entirely accidental deaths such as road accidents. But... You attack someone and it's not defence, and it results in injury, it's into the Class Two. If it results in death or permanent injury, it's into the Class Three. Defence is the only issue to be resolved. Why so strong and hard a standard? I don't like violence. Maybe such a law would, sooner or later, have people being civil to each other.

    It's an internet message board. I'm hardly likely to be so up-in-arms about anything that I'd consider sacrificing part of myself. So I see no reason to say I would.
  20. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    How interesting ....

    Elaboration that results in different conditions. I consider it a revision of conditions.
    A few considerations:

    • Prison guards: It's rough enough for prison guards in the United States, at least. A few of those luxuries help maintain what peace there is in a prison.

    • Prisoners' necessities: Is a library in a prison a luxury? Such facilities have proven in the past to be vital to prisoners' appeals of their convictions. And some of these prisoners have won their appeals on the grounds that they are innocent.

    Medical necessities: Hygiene and health are difficult enough issues in prisons. Should we put the guards at risk by allowing infections to run rampant among prisoners? Prisoners do receive medical care, and some have argued that this is excessive.

    Communications: Prisoners, at present, are allowed to communicate with their families from time to time. There are even groups out there who remind us through Dear Abby and other such media outlets to write to prisoners and so forth. Personally, I think there's something wrong with you if you need a prison pen-pal, but maybe there's something I'm missing.

    Fundamental rights: One of the most macabre issues ever put before prisons in my time is freedom of religion--peyote and so forth. At present, if you're Christian, you're allowed to practice your religion in prison. The states even bring Christian preachers in to talk to the prisoners and to preach to them and convert them. The peyote cases, while seemingly laughable, raise an interesting question: Why should public money go toward the promotion of one religion? I suppose we could remove all the Bibles and so forth from the prisons; well enough. But the presence of religion in prisons has proven to be useful, both in the rehabilitation of those who will get out, and in contributing to whatever sense of peace exists among prisoners. This is helpful to the guards, to say the least, and does help lower the amount of violence going on in prisons.

    Just a few points on luxuries.
    In other words ...?
    Date-rapist college jocks? How many of those date-rapist college jocks are raping high school girls? Date rape is a crime because intercourse takes place without mutual consent. In case you'd forgotten, we're speaking of consent and deception about age.
    Has nothing to do with the subject at hand. Of course I would like to know my lovers better, but as long as we're being irrelevant, I might as well mention that it's six years later and my sexual partner is still surprising me with character quirks.
    It's a clear danger. But, insofar as contributing to acquittals is concerned, who can afford it? Is this another case of the rich having advantages in court that the poor do not?

    But seriously--she's in the bar, which means her ID has passed muster once. She's carded by the bartender in your presence, which means her ID has passed muster twice. Now, what would you do, Adam, to establish her age?

    Hell, we all celebrated a friend's birthday last year--her eighteenth. We all knew she was seventeen when she met a friend of ours. We all knew that she was having sex with a 29 year-old. Her biggest relief was not having to hide her age anymore. But then again, I've seen her drink in my presence and she can toke most people I know under the table. The big joke was that "he's only 23". Apparently that made a difference to the girl's parents :bugeye:, but that conversation consistently led to jaws dropping when people asked why and, "(cough) ... She's only 17, dude." And, yes, if the parents so chose, even believing he was 23, they could have prosecuted him for having sex with a minor, despite the age of consent. They chose not to. And, when, after her 18th birthday, she spilled it to her folks, they still chose not to prosecute. Strangely, they're the most stable couple I know.

    The point of that is that most people I knew assumed her to be 20 or 21. With a fake ID, at 17, she could have passed as legal. A couple of restaurants I know of even served her alcohol without asking for ID.

    Point being that in the case of the guy who got sent up for it ... heck, what is he supposed to do? She's showing ID and passing right there in front of him. What reason does he have to doubt her age?
    Actually, I'm not referring to Dr Kevorkian. This guy was a psychiatrist. If you're a prosecutor facing a tight insanity plea, you call him in. He was certified as a doctor in most states, and when you call him in, he would interview the defendant once, and then read what was pretty much a canned diagnosis to the jury stating that he found the defendant to be sane and cognizant. His job was to help secure the death penalty at any cost. Even lying. I think he's fallen out of practice because he's too well-known for what he does. Thank CNN for that, I suppose. And USA Today.
    Actually, the one who needs to go to prison is a Wisconsin judge who, in 1985, acquitted a man of raping a child because the 3 year-old apparently "acted promiscuously". But, sitting and listening to the "someone would have heard it" ruling ... I'd say that day plays a vital role in my distrust of American justice.
    The anthropology sounds reasonable, at least. In the modern day, though, I directly attribute the crazy religious standards. Catholic school, at least, demonstrated that clearly for me. I think it was in the Hate/Oppose/Dislike Christianity thread that I noted that Catholic school destroyed a number of my standards of human sanctity. Sexuality took a severe beating there.
    On the one hand, I highly recommend it. To the other, a survey of the last twenty years of American judicial proceedings will show a decline in that standard. In the drug war, it's set aside entirely.

    But, for instance, as furious as people were at the OJ Simpson ruling in this country, I agree with it. I had just dropped out of college and wasn't working while that was going on, so of course I spent a ridiculous amount of time watching the trial. And I would have acquitted too, based on a standard of "beyond any reasonable doubt". Merely three points: preservatives in the blood, poor evidence collection (both blood evidence and a possible murder weapon--the infamous envelope contained a knife that the police utterly overlooked), and a dish of ice cream that, by comparing the officers' notes to the crime scene itself indicated that the murder took place outside the necessary time-frame for Simpson's guilt. On the ice cream alone I would have acquitted; it created a reasonable doubt in my mind.
    Depends on what it's for. Life sentences for drug possession? Come on.
    In our (American) case, "cruel and unusual punishment" is strictly forbidden by the Constitution. That degree of cruelty and unorthodoxy is constantly under review.
    But how is it spent? Let's say you spend a million dollars a year on a prison. How do you spend the money? Hire nine guards, pay them $100,000 each and spend the remaining portion on food for the prisoners? Hire five guards, pay them $50,000 each, spend a few hundred-thousand on bolstering the guards' security, and the remainder on the prisoners?
    Well, everybody's judgemental. But, to borrow a Christian term, those who trespass against us are usually the more judgemental. I, for instance, am quite judgemental. But I'm also going to trust each human being I meet until they give me reason to enact judgement. This does, in fact, get me into trouble every now and then. But it also does some good, as well. I can think of two relatively recent occasions where my refusal to judge someone might actually have prevented a crime. In one case, some french fries and an hour out of my day is all that was required--I can't describe it any better except to say at least the woman was safe while I was dealing with the situation. In the other, bus fare, a change of clothes, and a couple of tokes to calm down a crackhead who, thinking he was being chased by the police, jumped off a bridge to escape a passing ambulance. It would be funny if it wasn't so sad. But such situations require delicacy. However, before I digress any further, I'll just note that it's the people I see daily who routinely push that level of trust and who routinely demand judgement of others.
    It is, in fact, the bar's responsibility, both in the state I'm in now and the state I lived in when I knew this guy. It used to be a simple question: Do they look 21? As it became more and more problematic, that number went up. 26, 28, 30 ... nowadays, they check every ID through the door. If ignorance is not bliss, then the bartender and the doorman at least should have suffered legal consequences. They did not.
    There's been a long debate about liquor regulation in this country. In California, it was common to allow minors into clubs for concerts. If you were of age, you received an asymmetrical, special stamp on your hand that indicated you were cleared for drinking. You were also obliged to show ID when asked, even if you already had the stamp. They do it in Oregon, too. Up here in Washington, well ... we treat minors poorly and it shows.
    Yes, and that's a great reason to throw someone in prison ...?
    There was a shooting once outside my workplace. At the time, all anyone knew is that a cabbie shot a fare for some reason. He was black. He was Middle-Eastern. He was white. He was a redhead. He was Hispanic. He was tall. He was short. He had a beard. He was clean-shaven. What happened?

    Or a shooting at a boatyard in Seattle. For hours the police described their suspect variously. While asking the public to be cautious of a black man wearing these clothes and matching this physical description, the cops on the street were shaking down everybody.

    I got in a fight once at school. A girl slapped me for no reason, pushed me back into a bunsen burner, and then threw a right hook. I fell back over a stool, whereupon she tried to kick me. Two people who weren't in the room told the principal of the school that I had hit her.

    Not unless you have it on videotape do you get to see what really happened. Somewhere around here, someone linked out to a police-beating of an Hispanic man in Texas. I remember when the story broke and he was described initially as being violent and resisting. I watched four minutes of the video today. Yeah, violent. He tried to walk away. I haven't watched the other 20 minutes of it, but by the time 3 cops were holding him down and causing him pain, I would cheer any violence he could possibly visit upon them. Really, how incompetent were these cops that they couldn't cuff him in under four minutes?

    The police in Seattle have taken a good deal of heat lately. The WTO debacle (Nov. 1999) should be enough to explain that. They clamped down in response to violence in the protests. Um ... okay, they clamped down on the peaceful protesters after standing aside while masked vandals did thousands of dollars worth of damage and other protesters were left trying to stop them. The vandals disappeared, the protest returned to its focus, and then the police let the remaining protesters have it. Beyond that is the shooting of a black motorist. Yes, we understand that he was fleeing the cops. The officers' justification for shooting the guy was that he was assaulting another cop, who was "being dragged helplessly alongside the car". Okay ... as the guy decided to flee, that officer grabbed onto the car and chose not to let go. In another case, police shot a shoplifter with a kitchen knife. The psychiatrically-disabled man apparently lunged at the officer who shot him, apparently placing the officer in immediate danger. The videotape shows it differently. The guy with the knife turned around suddenly, and took a step. It is unclear whether that step was a matter of balance or otherwise. However, what is clear is that, had the man charged the officer, the officer would have had between three and four seconds before impact, and he was well-covered by other officers who did not interpret his actions dangerously enough to shoot.

    What we hear in court is a reconstruction of what happened. It's pretty close, but some vital details are always missing or distorted. I'm not pointing out a guilt/innocence problem. But, to revisit Betty Lou Beets from a different aspect--she was tried for a capital crime because she apparently killed her husband for insurance money. This cold-blooded act allowed the state to escalate the charge to a captial crime. It was on the written advice of her lawyer that she filed the insurance claim. A minor detail, no? All I'm after here is that her crime may not have fit the state standard for a capital crime. What actually happened may not have been what the jury convicted her of. Thus, to revisit your paragraph, and a part not yet cited--
    To me that makes all the difference in the world. Take a friend of mine as an example. He was arrested for reckless driving. It should be pointed out that he's black, and nobody ever asks, "Do you know why I stopped you, sir?" In fact, they don't ask for his license and registration. The first words he heard that night were, "Please step out of the car, you're under arrest." Well, when all was sorted out and the situation explained, an offense warranting prison time was reduced to a $90 ticket. The officer's notes, which would have been presented at the trial, would have inaccurately described the situation.

    We must necessarily know what we're sentencing people for. And that is not always clear.

    No, it's not perfect. But if we're going to put someone away for life, we better be damn sure of everything we're sentencing that person for.
    And I have to disagree. Do the Class Two criminals get out or stay in for life? I invite you to examine the criteria pertaining to the crimes themselves in your classification scheme. I'm going to venture that a guy who steals his money through embezzlement or credit-card fraud needs less education in prison than the guy who steals his money from a liquor store with a gun. It's just a sneaking suspicion here. I can't imagine what makes me think that

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    For instance, the difference between Murder 1 and Murder 2 is generally the nature of the crime. If you come home and find your wife sleeping with your best friend and shoot him, we call that a crime of passion, and the court understands to a certain degree that you're not a bad person per se, but that you need some help with how you react to things, and recognizes your right to do at least something in defense of the sanctity of your marriage. The problem is that you did too much. If you find your best friend in bed with your wife, and in the course of ejecting him from the house, he falls down the stairs, hits his head, and dies, the court might be inclined to look at it even less severely. You didn't intend to kill him, you just weren't careful enough in your rage. You might avoid a murder charge altogether, and face manslaughter instead. But if you suspect your wife is having an affair with your best friend, and plot to kill one or both of them, and carry out the crime while not in the heat of passion--e.g. immediate and confusing rage; if you've had time to cool off--to kill one of them would result in Murder 1.

    Thus you might actually commit Murder 1, what might happen is that the state can prove you killed someone, and prove it definitively, but be unable to demonstrate that you plotted coldly to cause another person's death. Thus you might possibly be able to get away with Murder 2, serve 25 to life, and be paroled after 12 to 17. Thus, your Class Three criminal will be convicted of a lesser crime because the alternative is losing the prosecution and watching the suspect go free. In fact, if your lawyer is good enough, he might be able to plead you down to manslaughter and get you out 8-10 years, and you'd be out in 5 to 7. (I don't get how that particular part of serving time works. But yeah, to keep Shepherd's killer from being paroled at some point required a special agreement whereby the court sentenced McKinney to two life sentences, and still had to include a specific "no parole" clause.)
    Yeah, I'm just hounding you on that point because it was there, and because I was so amused at the appearance of your missing that specific point. The propriety and impropriety in question, to which you responded, was a response to your own standard. That's the only reason I dare rib you on that one.

    Something interesting though that I'm noticing. Perhaps it's the difference between having Her Majesty at the top of the chain and having Dubya (or any president) at the top of the chain. By theory, at least, We, the People, are the government. I know it doesn't look like that these days, but technically, the state asks nothing of us. We ask of it. At least, in theory. And if we ever throw that idea out entirely, the US is over.

    What is really interesting about the Constitution itself and the Bill of Rights is how much of that foundation is directly in reaction to His Majesty, King George III of England--that is, the same office as the proper (and recently reaffirmed, if I recall) head of your state. Ironic, to say the least. But yes, the "trilateral commission" of Congress, Executive, Judiciary is a direct strike at the authority of the Crown; relations between the states are a reaction to colonialism; the first eight amendments of the Bill of Rights are in response to the Crown's usurpations of the people.

    It might be that our regard for the state is part of what we're disagreeing on. When I see words about what the state asks of the people ... it doesn't quite ring right to me.


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  21. Asguard Kiss my dark side Valued Senior Member

    I HOPE i missread that (my computer is playing tricks with me and its making it hard to read stuff)

    Did someone just say that date rape was OK. If i read it right i can't belive the crulty of you. BOTH sides have a right to stop at ANYTIME.
  22. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    I haven't seen that


    I haven't even seen that. It might be part of the big issue we're having about statutory rape, consent, age, and deception.

    Where did you think you saw that? Perhaps it's a contextual thing. But now I'm curious ....


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  23. Xev Registered Senior Member

    Methinks we need to define 'date rape'.

    I never quite understood the reason for the distinction anyways....

    Adam: One small point: I don't think one should have to worry about a rape charge simply for not getting to know your partner better.

    That said, I'll leave you two to it. Interesting debate.

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