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Thursday, September 9, 2004

Conversation

• you support capital punishment?

• yes I do.

• you do? Then why aren't you petitioning to participate?

• participate?

• yes! Participate! Take part in the killing of a condemned criminal, a person sentenced to death for whatever reason, to be sure justified for why else would a criminal be sentenced to die but for a most heinous crime. To swing the axe, release the blade of a guillotine, pull the lever of the gallows, the electric switch, the gas spigot, inject the poison. Why allow someone else the joy if it is you among so many who wish death to those committing crimes deserving death? Like shuttle launches & rollercoasters, get in line & wait your turn to take part.

• I don't know about that.

• You don't? You should!

• But I don't think they'd let me.

• Well then stand up for your rights. You wanted it. You paid for it. You should get to do it, don't you think? What joy is there in planting a garden if you've planted nothing yourself? What joy is there in spying the crosses of those you've condemned to death, if you haven't had a hand in it? You should demand the right to have a chance to kill at least one person your support of capital punishment has condemned. Your tax dollars pay for it like they do the buses, the trains. You get to use them, right?

• I'm a meat eater, does that mean I should be killing my own cattle?

• Payment for beef is a choice you make. Municipal, state & federal taxes are mandatory burdens for services you have a right to receive. Like the twice weekly garbage collection, capital punishment is a form of waste management. You get to throw out the garbage, they get rid of it.

• They wouldn't let me watch, let alone do it.

• Well thats wrong. How is it you support something you can't take part in?

• Well I believe in just prison sentences, but I'm not going to use my house as a jail.

• Why not?

• Because I don't have to.

• Like capital punishment?

• Yes.

• Prison sentences are punishment for criminals. Capital punishment has always been intended as a deterrent as well as the ultimate punishment for the heinous crimes the condemned have commited. How could it deter anyone if its done in secret: no public hand involved, no public witnessing. Used to be the town turned a hanging into a community event. Everybody got to watch. You had to be really bad to want to commit a capital crime. Nowadays, most don't know what its like to watch someone killed, let alone take part in it.

• And we should?

• I believe we should.

• Nah. Not for me. Let someone else do it.

• You'd rather not know how the burger gets to your table, just so it's there for you to eat.

• Thats right.

• It's made us a weak country.