Eye for an Eye??

greenspun.com : LUSENET : Freedom! self reliance : One Thread

An Eye For An Eye

Timothy McVeigh, from the beginning to the end of his short life, was a product more of the American government than his parents . He was trained by the military to regard the killing of people as "collateral damage". Instead of becoming a hero after earning medals for shooting basically defenseless Bedouins in Desert Storm, he was promptly laid off from the army and found himself in the ranks of the unemployed, untrained for an uncertain future. He was persuaded (rightly) that the government used excessive and illegal force at Ruby Ridge and at Waco - yet no government employee was punished or even brought to trial. He concluded that a government supposedly by and for the people was not after all to be trusted. He decided that only violent revolution could change things for the better and was convinced that the people, his presumed fellow compatriots, would rise up in arms given a clear signal to do so.

He was misguided, misinformed and, to paraphrase Paul Mcartney, a "jerk of all jerks". But by all accounts, though his crime was that of a coward, he nonetheless died bravely and will probably be regarded by certain folk as a martyr to a cause yet to be resolved.

But his execution by that same government - in legal circumstances that were questionable to say the least - is a further travesty of justice, much as George W. Bush would have us believe otherwise. Who knows what was in the missing 4000 documents - or what other evidence may yet lie in some FBI vault? There is not one jot of evidence that execution deters crime - in Singapore they have been executing drug dealers for 25 years yet their drug problems are worse than ever. There are more murders per head of population in the southern states (who generally have the death penalty) than in the northern states (who do not). And putting a man to death does not provide the much touted "closure" to the victims of his crime as many of them attested after the execution. It does not change things for the better for any of us, since in America it is very evident yet again that one can only get justice if one can afford it.......

And so America remains the only modern industrial nation in the world with the death penalty - accompanied by such paragons of virtue as North Korea, Iraq, Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia. A vestige of a less civilised past. A distasteful eye for an eye policy. An appeal to revenge rather than forgiveness. Proof that in the end analysis, violence merely begets violence.

Timothy McVeigh may well rot in hell and deservedly so - but he will not be alone.......

Visit http://www.thebritishclub.com/BritsMarmalade/ for a more enjoyable day. James

-- James (Jamesj1592@about.com), June 13, 2001


I have no problem with an unrepentant murderer being executed, or with the state's right to do so. Years ago in Texas, we had such a man, Mcduff, on death row in Texas, when the federal government decided the death penalty was no longer to be used. His sentence was then changed, I guess to life, and he, of course, eventually was released. This man killed at least two or three more women in a very heinous fashion before he was finally brought back to trial and put back on death row. He never should have been taken off in the first place, except to face his execution. Whether his death deterred others is beside the point. If it had been done sooner(when it should have been) he would not have killed again. As long as Texans remember him, Texas will always have the death penalty. As far as Tim McVeigh goes, no one denies his guilt, not even him. Sad that he was taught to kill at a young age. Perhaps the government was in part to blame. But he was, indeed, the master of his own fate. He sealed it by the crime which he committed, and was responsible for. I, personally, will be glad when we can stop talking about him and move on.

-- mary, in colorado (marylgarcia@aol.com), June 13, 2001.

I don't believe in the death penalty, for anyone..The Old Testament said an eye for an eye, the New says "love your enemies and turn the other cheek"....I believe that this guy and all like him should be housed, for life in a little room with a toilet, bed and chair..no TV, no books, no college degrees by mail, where they could awaken eveyday for several decades and contemplate how they got there. McViegh would have had at least 50 years of a tiny room all to himself with absolutely zero chance for parole...I heard on the news the other day that some judge ruled that the FBI guy who killed the folks at Ruby Ridge can be brought to civil court by the relatives...interesting, eh??? God bless.

-- lesley (martchas@bellsouth.net), June 13, 2001.

I was wondering when this subject would come up. So, McVeigh was put down the other day and I didn't feel the slightest reduction in the force. Personally, I think he got off easy by being excuted. I also don't believe the families of the victims will ever be at peace because they never got what they wanted which was remore and an apology from McVeigh.

Just my opinion. Thanks for reading.

-- Dianne in Mass (dianne.bone@usa.net), June 13, 2001.

Got to agree with Dianne in Mass. Hmmmm no twitch in the force. Oh well, now if they would execute the 1000's on death row that would solve a lot of the overcrowding prison problem.

.....Well it would :-)~

-- Kenneth in N.C. (wizardsplace13@hotmail.com), June 13, 2001.

Ya know, I support the death penalty, but in the case of McVeigh, I feel it was revenge and silencing rather than justice. I actually cried. Not because I don't feel that the man should have paid the ultimate penalty for his actions, but because 4,000 + documents were ignored and NO amount of time is going to bring those people who died back at all. The truth wasn't determined, the truth wasn't sought after, instead "we" tried to give "closure" to a lot of people who probably will never have it anyway.......death toll is now 169, and no closer to the truth.

When there is no doubt about the crime and whodunit and who was involved and there is complete disclosure of evidence, I support the death penalty and think it should be extended to child molesters as well. NOT as revenge, but because some things simply cannot be tolerated and the perpetrator has the time to prepare his soul. The victims usually aren't given that chance.

-- Doreen (bisquit@here.com), June 17, 2001.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ