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Poll: Zacarias Moussaoui escapes the death penalty

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  • Poll: Zacarias Moussaoui escapes the death penalty

    How would you have voted if you were on the jury for the penalty phase & why?
    23
    Life sentence
    65.22%
    15
    Death
    34.78%
    8
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  • #2
    Re: Poll: Zacarias Moussaoui escapes the death penalty

    I don't believe in the death penalty. I don't think human beings should be deciding who gets to live and who gets to die, and I don't believe in revenge, an eye for an eye. I also think the death penalty adds a level of brutality to our society, and as far as I know the death penalty does not discourage criminals. I think it's a far worse punishment to rot in a jail anyway.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Poll: Zacarias Moussaoui escapes the death penalty

      I'm going to vote for the death penalty here - just to give it a little balance. But in this case, although I think this guy would have killed thousands of Americans if he had had the chance, the fact is - he didn't have the chance. I think life in prison for planning this kind of crime is sufficient. The world is a more brutal place because of thugs like Moussaoui and Saddam not because of those who attempt to protect us from them.

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      • #4
        I don't believe in the death penalty for any reason whatsoever, for the same reasons put forth by phtp2. Also, on a different note, if he had been sentenced to death he would have been held up as a matyr and more aggression might have followed on his behalf.

        I think that staying in prison for life without the possibility of parole is the best possible sentence he could have received. He's a danger to society; they're making sure he's not in it.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Poll: Zacarias Moussaoui escapes the death penalty

          Hi, I'm not personally for the death penalty especially in light of the fact of how many people in this country have been sentenced to death and then it was later discovered they had nothing to do with the crime! (I don't care if it's just 2 people - that's 2 too many). Although in the case of admitted terrorists - especially this guy - I'm very tempted! But Alexis, one thing you said raised a concern for me. And that's when you said that if we excuted him, he may be held up as a martyr and then more aggression might follow.

          While I agree that's indeed a possibility, I have to ask myself how many things are we as a society not going to do, that we might have otherwise done, out of fear that it may tick them off and they might send more violence our way?

          Ever since this Iraq war started, I've been doing a lot more reading than usual about Saddam and dictators like him, including those of the former Soviet Union and other places. I got fascinated at one point at how these brutal people end up taking over a society that I'm sure would rather not have them. How does one brutal man take over an entire country of millions of people!? And one thing I've discovered that they ALL have in common is the use of FEAR to intimidate people into doing whatever they want them to do.

          It works almost exactly like the Mafia actually. First, they go out and kill and/or torture a bunch of people - just to show people they'll do it. When word gets around that this thing or that thing ticks them off and they'll kill you if they get pissed off, it's amazing how fast people will stop doing those things.

          So, if we say we don't want to sentence convicted terrorists to death because we're afraid of how they might react then they have already begun to manipulate us through the use of fear. So with all due respect to you - I have to reject that particular reason for being against the death penalty in this case.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Poll: Zacarias Moussaoui escapes the death penalty

            Hi there vbad,

            Thank you for the well-thought out response. I respect your opinion, but I respectfulyl disagree.

            When I said he would be held up as a martyr, I wasn't specifically saying that because he was a terrorist. I was saying it because it has been the case in many other instances where people have died--Waco, Mumia, etc. There are even people that stand up for Ted Bundy because he was executed. The point being, two wrongs don't make a right--and when the government commits one by executing someone, it makes their plight seem more sympathetic.

            I do think what we do as a society depends on consensus. If something the government does is going to cause a backlash, perhaps it's prudent to look at the hows and whys of that response, and determine if it's worth it to go forward.

            Also, in the case of dictators, it's not just about fear--a lot of the times, the dictators are offering the people something they wouldn't have otherwise . I personally know people who still wish the USSR existed, and think Russia was better during the Soviet era--because when the USSR existed, they had medical care, better educational options, more working opportunities and so forth. It doesn't mean it's right, but there's more than one facet to the situation there.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Poll: Zacarias Moussaoui escapes the death penalty

              Hi Alexis,

              I appreciate your kindness as you disagree as well. I noticed in a couple of your other posts you were equally kind and respectful to those you disagreed with and I always admire that in someone and think it's important to civil debate. So thank you.

              And yes, you make a very good point about the carrot & stick approach of dictators. You're absolutely right, they do use carrots as well. It's not all stick. But the stick is what gives them the iron-clad control over their societies. It's the stick that gives them the kind of control that no democracy could ever have. And it's the stick that terrorists use. And they only use the stick. There are no carrots with them. And in this case their stick is the threat of more violence if we put one of their own to death. If we decide not to put him to death - for that reason alone - then we have rewarded them for using the "stick" against us. And they will feel encouraged to use it again. As long as it works, they will reason, why not keep using it?

              Here's another way of saying what I'm trying to say. Let's say the death penalty was commonly used here (as it is in a lot of places) and let's say it was accepted as perfectly fine by 90% of the people (which it's not). But let's say it was. Well, there are all kinds of good reasons for throwing the death penalty out. All kinds of reasons. Reasons of conscious, reasons of morality, reasons of practicality, and my favorite reason - the fact that mistakes can be made. I'm all for a debate over the death penalty and if society decides to throw it out because of any of those reasons it wouldn't bother me in the least.

              But what would bother me is if they decided to throw it out because they didn't want to antagonize the supporters of the person being put to death. That, in my opinion would be the worst of all possible reasons. Mainly because then you give people who are against any particular policy - you give them extreme power to change that policy by letting them know you'll easily succumb to threats. Then they know - all they have to do if they want you to do something you wouldn't normally do - is to simply threaten and intimidate you. And for good measure they'd have to throw in a terrorist event every now and then to remind us they're serious.

              Suppose they decided women shouldn't have to remove their veils for driver's license photos and suppose we as a society are adamant that people's faces must be seen in these photos. If they make a big deal out of it (as they have in France), would we then say, "ok, we'll drop that requirement, because if we don't, we might antagonize them and they may commit more violence on us." The minute you do that - you give them full control over your society because they see that you're running scared and they can get whatever they want simply by continuing to scare you!

              Anyway, those are my thoughts. And again, I don't have any problem with your opposition to the death penalty - only with that one particular reason. I hope I've been able to persuade you to at least think about what I'm saying here, and that while there are plenty of good reasons to oppose the death penalty - the fear that we may antagonize them shouldn't be one of them. Oppose it for any other reason - but just not that one! My 2 cents.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Poll: Zacarias Moussaoui escapes the death penalty

                Hmmmm. Okay well I guess I'm going to really upset you guys. I don't necessarily believe in the death penalty either..... however in this case I do. Every rule needs the odd exception. I lost two friends because of this piece of filth and like minded thinkers. My lungs will probably never be the same either. Let him go and see his God, we really don't need or want him here. Thousands of others lost fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, sons and daughters and the list goes on. SOME people are too sick to deserve to live. A matyr he might be but alive he's a symbol to the twisted and a burden on tax payers. Having said all that I fully expect them to find him one morning with a sharpened toothbrush sticking out of his windpipe. I will not mourn his passing. His lack of respect for the family members of those he murdered at his trial, his lack of remorse for his participation in this attack sealed his fate.

                Contrary to popular belief there is nothing sacred about a single life. Nothing sacred when there are Billions of others on the planet. It's a case of the liberals pandering to the few at the expense of the many.

                Those of you that believe his death might lead to further attacks, I'd remind you that he and his supporters freely admit they want to attack us. They hate our way of life. They hate us as people. His death is not going to change that fact.

                Anyone got a quarter? I need to call Vinny in Colorado.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Poll: Zacarias Moussaoui escapes the death penalty

                  Well, first let me say I'm really sorry that you lost two friends on 9/11. That makes it really personal.

                  And I must say, I'm shocked & impressed! You sound downright like me! (I hope that's not received by you as some kind of twisted insult)! Anyway, I really agree with you deep down inside. My only reservation about the death penalty in this case is that he didn't actually do anything. But like I said, and like you said, if he were to wake up dead one morning in CO - I wouldn't lose a minute of sleep over it. In fact, I would actually have a little private celebration.

                  But, there is one thing I may disagree with you slightly on. I believe that our default position should be that all human life is sacred - regardless of how many people are on earth. It should only be considered not sacred as a special exception. And this for me would qualify as one of those exceptions. How can a human life be considered sacred, when that human life not only wants, but actively works to kill thousands of people for the simple reason that they do not share the same religious beliefs?

                  We could actually solve this whole problem by passing one simple law. Although we'd have to get every country on earth to pass it as well... so maybe not so simple. But, that law would say all religions are legal - except those that teach that you must kill anyone who doesn't practice yours! Make that religion illegal - and the whole problem goes away!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Poll: Zacarias Moussaoui escapes the death penalty

                    Originally posted by Moneymatters
                    Contrary to popular belief there is nothing sacred about a single life. Nothing sacred when there are Billions of others on the planet. It's a case of the liberals pandering to the few at the expense of the many.
                    EEEK, MM!!!

                    Is it safe to assume that you think we should bomb the lot of 'em because of a few bad apples? Because we all know what just one bad apple can do.

                    Putting the Nihilism argument aside for the moment, I?m afraid that the above statement counters the Christian values that appear to be so popular in America these days.

                    My understanding of this case is that Moussaoui failed to remain inconspicuous at flight training school & he was terrible at his lessons. The charge that he somehow had enough information, if revealed in a timely fashion, could have somehow lead to foiling the plot, counters something that is known about the Cell theory & that is that there success was based on their separateness. Even if he knew the broad sketch, it doesn?t appear that the prosecution was able to convince the jury that he knew enough to be of use to stop the attack. He is a loser. He was just a pawn.

                    The fact remains that the dots were not connected & the tragedy occurred.

                    Frying his a$$ will not change that fact. Granting him the martyrdom that he seeks will not only be playing into his hands, it would be a reactionary response to an emotional situation the our system of checks & balances & accountability was created to avoid & so many have died defending.

                    Just as it can be said that he should be put down for the sake of the victims of that day, there is case to be made that for the sake of the brave souls & battered bodies that have given of themselves to show that we mean business when it comes to our ?values? as a nation. We are not in a battle of religions; we are in a battle of morals. Good people from all religions can & will decry the violence that those without the courage of conviction must resort.

                    He was tried, convicted & sentenced in a court of law in view of the world. A jury comprised of 12 good men & women true. May he rot in loneliness for the rest of his life. An example to the living that justice, as imperfect as it sometime appears, is the best way that we mere mortals can deal with such evil.

                    I am satisfied with the process & the result. Jurisprudence in action.

                    CD
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                    See my Classified/Computer maintenance listing or send me a private message.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Poll: Zacarias Moussaoui escapes the death penalty

                      Originally posted by tarmill
                      We could actually solve this whole problem by passing one simple law. Although we'd have to get every country on earth to pass it as well... so maybe not so simple. But, that law would say all religions are legal - except those that teach that you must kill anyone who doesn't practice yours! Make that religion illegal - and the whole problem goes away!
                      One day I'll get a grip on why I can't let these kinds of statements just go by, but until then I must voice my exception to your 'solution'.

                      I am not a religious person, but I fully understand that any government that prohibits by law, any aspect of any religion, is a theocracy. Murder is already against the law in civilized countries. (In this country the Government is allowed to take a life in the name of justice. Some other countries think that is just legalized murder. That's a discussion for another day.)

                      What I am most astonished by is that you imply that "religions" teach the killing of non-believers. Which religions do you have in mind? The teachings of Islam? Wahabism? (or Wahhabism?)The Crusades? Please be specific, because in this case your generalties 'hold no water'.

                      CD
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                      • #12
                        Re: Poll: Zacarias Moussaoui escapes the death penalty

                        While I know that my post in this thread is reactionary and gut felt, there really is nothing that anyone can do or say that would change my opinion on this matter. The fact that this man will not be executed just proves to me that there is a real difference between Justice and the law. I am not a religious man and I don't think there will be any reckoning other than what is meted out in this lifetime. To me one of the problems on this planet is that there are people that believe the best is yet to come in the hereafter and thus the here and now suffers for it. I apply this conviction to any fundamentalist religion not just to the twisted version of Islam that he follows.

                        My view that life is not sacred is based on scientific fact. Life is everywhere on this planet and as we move out into space I think we will find it everywhere we go. I believe that life is an inevitable consequence of environmental factors and chemistry. I also think we will find that there is nothing unique or particularly special about mankind. We live on a planet where 14 year olds get pregnant and are unable to support or raise there young but go ahead and produce anyway. Consequently these people grow up impoverished, uneducated and easy prey for religious zealots promising all in the afterlife. It's all about control and power, always has been and always will be. We have to take charge of this situation. Until we realise that this is all we have there will be no changes. WE need to get away from arcane belief systems which thrive at the expense of mankind. I think I am a moral man and I certainly don't need religion to tell me what is right and what is wrong.

                        Killing a person who has proven themselves unfit to live in a civilised society is no loss to that society. There are billions of people far more deserving of life than he. Will those who commit the act of sanctioned murder suffer for doing so?..... well that is a debateable question, one for inteligencia mentally more endowed than I. These people believe we are weak and corrupt. WE believe them to be morally bancrupt. WE are fundamentally opposed to one another and all the time the religious Zealots egg us on. A pessimist might say that there will never be peace on earth. Even without mankind there are animals that war on one another (the higher apes particularly). As we evolve and strive to better ourselves someone else beneath us suffers. We have to decide whether it is our values that carries through to the generations that follow or theirs. Sometimes selective surgery of the genepool is required. I don't tar all people with the same brush...... I know, work with and have friends among the arab community and I'm sure that 99.999.....% of them are just as disgusted by the actions of terrorists. Of course I don't want to kill them all for the actions of the few. How stupid. How Cheney of you.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Poll: Zacarias Moussaoui escapes the death penalty

                          My bruised ego insists that I address your last comment first:

                          I apologize for not wording my ?bad apples? comment more carefully as to avoid being misconstrued as ?stupid? or brutal. I had hoped that the preface of ?Is it safe to assume that?? would distance me from this extreme extension of what I felt was your implied logic. That being: Since life no single life has any value, a large number is equally valueless (0x0=0), & therefore a solution to our problem would be to merely overpower the perceived enemy, once & for all, by complete annihilation. Please forgive my lapse into the world of extremism, since I guess the irony was lost.

                          Now back to the beginning.

                          Devil?s Advocate says:
                          I agree whole-heartedly regarding religious fundamentalists. It seems that we humans, being the fools that we are, always seem to twist everything that we try to hold onto too tightly. In this case zealots of all stripe, who think that theirs is the one & true way to the hereafter, start to take themselves way to seriously by insisting that everybody has to drink the Kool-aid.

                          My cynical side sees that as a manifestation of the need for organized religions to propagate in order to expand the client base for their product. (I warned you that there was going to be some Devil in here somewhere.)

                          I find your statement that ?life is not sacred?based on scientific fact? rather curious. (I wish to refresh the fact that I practice no religion, but reserve the right to remain philosophical.) The concept that anything can be proved sacred would remove the need for faith, thereby undermining the need for religion, which as we all know is a very crafty craft. Not particularly well founded, but entrenched just the same.

                          Joseph Campbell put it very well when he explains that as man?s intellectual capacity was evolving, the need to explain the inexplicable, lead to the development of the ?concept? of deity. Rain, thunder, lightening, fire, bounty, drought. All very fearful & relevant to immediate existence, yet oh so mysterious.

                          One of the first deities was a god in the form of a beastie-bear figure (Earliest carbon dated idol). As man grew more sophisticated, rituals were created to appease the god/gods & eventually the ritual specialists created organized religion. Following the as yet to be formulated business model, they needed a sustainable product line, a broad customer base & a good price point. What better product to offer than an unseen reward presented once the happy customer could no longer show any dissatisfaction, i.e. after life was over? Brilliant

                          Who would not want to have eternal happiness for their very own? How much you ask? Just lifelong supplication, is all. A small price to pay.

                          How much for the deluxe model?

                          For that you have to go on a crusade. Bring back or ?release? a few lost souls from their earthly bonds & you can get extra credit. It worked in various forms for years. Until the advent of the industrial age.

                          That?s were the disparities created what I call the ?hi-fidelity/infidel? crisis. The various sects & cults had to chose between wanting a stereo or a date with eternal damnation. There were those that chose to ?wait & see?, who have come to gradually embrace modernity. But there are those that not only refuse to accept science as, (perhaps a gift from God,) the best tool to explain the inexplicable, which is where we started.

                          Unfortunately here is where I come to a dilemma. If, as you posit, life is just a matter of carbon, water & a little electricity. Where does art come into it? What about tears? How about this very dialogue? Are man?s ethereal characteristics merely part of a survival instinct? Your very passion about matters betrays you.

                          Finally to address your point about the 14-year old parent. What other creature on earth experiences poverty? Being uneducated? Subject to influence by zealots based on being a ?have-not?? You are correct in saying that it?s all about control & power, but I feel that more attention should be paid to each individual using their power of self control to influence their future. Sure, there are many overwhelmingly bad influences out there, but if we were all better prepared to recognize these well designed determents to our own well being we would all be better off. Regardless of affiliation.

                          CD
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                          • #14
                            Re: Poll: Zacarias Moussaoui escapes the death penalty

                            Originally posted by seedyonenyc
                            Unfortunately here is where I come to a dilemma. If, as you posit, life is just a matter of carbon, water & a little electricity. Where does art come into it? What about tears? How about this very dialogue? Are man?s ethereal characteristics merely part of a survival instinct? Your very passion about matters betrays you.

                            CD
                            CD......

                            From various threads we have participated in you are one of the posters on this board whom I respect most and whose opinion I also value. Funny thing about words on a page is that often the intent or feeling behind them can be lost. Maybe that's why they give us emoticons

                            I choose to answer just the portion of your argument I have highlighted; if for no other reason then it's the part which most tickles my fancy right now. I read somewhere that modern man has been around basically unchanged for the last 200,000 years or so, religious nutters not withstanding. Art I'm sure or at least our definition of art has not. When man was running from the Sabre tooth tiger or trying to just get enough meat to fill his belly I'm sure that art wasn't high on his priorities. Once you do have a safe place to procreate and multiply though then I think art is a natural evolutionary process. I find nothing mystical or supernatural about it. It is after all an expression of your environment or thought processes which are physical and chemical in nature. Just having the free time to sit and trail a stick around in the sand is something you can only do if secure and comfortable.

                            As for tears, well there are tears of joy and grief. IT's a chemical reaction to an emotional state. Elephants cry in grief at the loss of one of their number. I'm thinking they don't believe in a God.

                            To be passionate about something isn't mystical. It's quite physical we are afterall biochemical machines.

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                            • #15
                              Re: Poll: Zacarias Moussaoui escapes the death penalty

                              Originally posted by tarmill
                              We could actually solve this whole problem by passing one simple law. Although we'd have to get every country on earth to pass it as well... so maybe not so simple. But, that law would say all religions are legal - except those that teach that you must kill anyone who doesn't practice yours! Make that religion illegal - and the whole problem goes away!
                              Hi Tarmill!

                              As seedyone mentioned, the moment the government becomes involved with banning or regulating religions, we've turned into a theocracy. Another problem is that virtually ever religion can be twisted, misinterpreted and manipulated. People can look at the exact same passage in the Bible, Torah, Koran or any other religious text and formulate completely different arguments from them.

                              How do we decide which religions are inherently good and bad? I'm a member of the Episcopal church, and some other denominations probably think I'm going to hell because I am pro-choice, pro gay rights, anti-war, liberal and feminist.

                              Also, banning a religion would not stop people from practicing it; they'd simply go underground and worship, as they have done for milennia.

                              thanks for making me think this afternoon!

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