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Old 12-14-2005, 04:17 PM   #376
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You can be opposed to the death penalty for Tookie (or any other murderer) and still be opposed to glorifying him in any way. That is quite offensive, comparing him to Rosa Parks in any way, shape, or form. That Barbara is sort of his 'PR" person who said it was a racist question to ask him to say the names of the his victims


http://news.yahoo.com/s/huffpost/200...A2BHNlYwM3NDI-

Look, I think the death penalty is a lousy idea. It demeans those of us in whose name it is done. It makes us killers, however ceremonially and legally it is couched. It drags us down toward the same level as the murderers we do in. Opposing the death penalty is ultimately about the kind of people we are, not about the kind of people we kill.

But I just heard that Barbara Becnel, a close friend of Tookie Williams', is planning a ‘’statesman’s’’ funeral for the man put to death in San Quentin on Tuesday morning, and I am appalled. The Los Angeles Times says Becnel is promising a funeral on the scale of Rosa Parks’.

Stop right there. Tookie Williams, however repentant his latter years, however many Swiss legislators nominated him for a Nobel Peace Prize, was also a criminal force. To try to put him on a par with Rosa Parks, the blameless secular saint of the civil rights movement, insults her, and us – and the anti-death penalty movement.

Not everyone who goes to prison is Nelson Mandela or Mahatma Gandhi. Heck, Hitler was in prison too and look what came out – Herr Holocaust. Being sent to prison does not automatically give anyone a leg up the hero ladder.

Prisoner redemption and rehabilitation – which for decades were ignored by the prison system --are laudable. But there’s a helluva lot to be said for not going bad in the first place. Where are the statesmen’s funerals for all the black kids who lived upright and forthright lives and didn’t get into trouble – and got killed by Crips or Bloods nonetheless?

Williams’ friend Becnel says the NAACP Legal Defense Fund has promised to help her prove Williams was innocent of the murders that sent him to death row – although after her comparing Williams to Rosa Parks, I gotta wonder if that’ll happen.

If it’s ever established that he is innocent, it will be a large and dreadful lesson for California, to have sent an innocent man to his death. But that's a matter in the future. For now, you can’t force history’s hand. Giving Tookie Williams a statesman’s funeral won’t make him one.
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Old 12-14-2005, 04:37 PM   #377
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Quote:
Originally posted by AliEnvy
The George Bernard Shaw quote pretty much sums it all for me so I guess that's the best answer I'm going to get on my initial question.

Even though it's not any more meaningful to the topic, I am still curious whether there are there are Bible passages that are more straight-forward in describing state-sanctioned execution as an acceptable, moral punishment for murder in God's view, and more specifically, Jesus' words.
What is more straight forward than "Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed."

Please offer us something more.
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Old 12-14-2005, 04:41 PM   #378
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I definitely agree that he doesn't deserve a hero's funeral.
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Old 12-14-2005, 04:53 PM   #379
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Quote:
Originally posted by nbcrusader
What is more straight forward than "Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed."
But that is from Genesis, no? It is no secret that the Hebrew scriptures, in many passages, endorse the use of capital punishment. I got the impression AliEnvy was looking for NT quotes--like something that clearly qualifies the turn-the-other-cheek message.
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Old 12-14-2005, 05:25 PM   #380
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Originally posted by yolland

But that is from Genesis, no? It is no secret that the Hebrew scriptures, in many passages, endorse the use of capital punishment. I got the impression AliEnvy was looking for NT quotes--like something that clearly qualifies the turn-the-other-cheek message.
Does Romans 13 qualify?
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Old 12-14-2005, 06:11 PM   #381
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Hmmm, I guess that depends on whether you think it possible that St Paul endorsed some views Jesus wouldn't have. In other words, was he infallible as an interpreter of Jesus' message.

But from my perspective that's neither here nor there so...

You're absolutely right about the Sixth Commandment, by the way. Lo tirtzakh, the Hebrew phrase there, uses the imperative form of ratzah which is indeed the Hebrew word for a malicious, unlawful killing specifically. (It literally says, "Murder not!") There is one instance--I believe it's Numbers 35, but I don't have a Tanakh on me now--where ratzah is in fact applied to both a killing in self-defense and an execution, but it is in the context of a punning, ironic play on words ("Be a murderer, get murdered!" more or less) warning against thinking oneself above the law where vengeance is concerned. In any case, it is clear from many other passages that neither killing in self-defense nor capital punishment are murder in the eyes of the Tanakh.
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Old 12-14-2005, 06:14 PM   #382
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Another reason why I'm not fond of Paul.

But you made me look it up, Dread. You always challenge. I appreciate that.
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Old 12-14-2005, 06:30 PM   #383
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Quote:
Originally posted by yolland
Hmmm, I guess that depends on whether you think it possible that St Paul endorsed some views Jesus wouldn't have. In other words, was he infallible as an interpreter of Jesus' message.

But from my perspective that's neither here nor there so...

You're absolutely right about the Sixth Commandment, by the way. Lo tirtzakh, the Hebrew phrase there, uses the imperative form of ratzah which is indeed the Hebrew word for a malicious, unlawful killing specifically. (It literally says, "Murder not!") There is one instance--I believe it's Numbers 35, but I don't have a Tanakh on me now--where ratzah is in fact applied to both a killing in self-defense and an execution, but it is in the context of a punning, ironic play on words ("Be a murderer, get murdered!" more or less) warning against thinking oneself above the law where vengeance is concerned. In any case, it is clear from many other passages that neither killing in self-defense nor capital punishment are murder in the eyes of the Tanakh.
Thank you for putting this into words better than I ever could.

According to your tradition then it would be wrong to chalk it up to semantics?
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Old 12-14-2005, 06:35 PM   #384
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Originally posted by Dreadsox


Does Romans 13 qualify?
There is far too much room for fallability in that passage.
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Old 12-14-2005, 06:51 PM   #385
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Originally posted by BonoVoxSupastar


Well I guess we would have to have a history expert here, but I would think the ax was used.
Swords were used to behead people--they actually are a cleaner, more efficient way. Anne Bolyen chose to be beheaded by a sword. Axes tended to crush their way through the neck and often took several blows.

BUT, beheading was not a common form of capital punishment in Jesus' time. We all know Jesus wasn't beheaded. Crucifixion and being thrown to the lions were common, "lower" forms of execution. I think burning at the stake became common as well, certainly impaling was by Nero's time.

As I recall, at least during the Republic, upper class men had their necks broken. And Vestal Virgins found to be impure were buried alive.

Decimation in the Roman legions ended with you being beaten to death.

So I would assume that Jesus meant living and dying by the sword in a military context, especially given the scene its said in the Bible--a skirmish with a Roman centurion. I have never taken it as a statement on capital punishment, but on violence as a whole.
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Old 12-14-2005, 06:52 PM   #386
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Originally posted by BonoVoxSupastar


There is far too much room for fallability in that passage.
There is far to much....VAGUERY....in that statement.
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Old 12-14-2005, 07:01 PM   #387
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Originally posted by nbcrusader


1. Yes. Dread clearly pointed out the difference between personal behavior and what is conducted by the government.

2. Jesus faced the prospect of capital punishment and never said it was wrong.
I have numbered the above.

1. Sure there is a differencve,the question I pose is: how can you BELIEVE one thing and SUPPORT another? I either have to question your belief or your political opinion.

2. Is this meant to be cynical? If yes, it is an offense to me. If not, I ask myself what on earth you wanted to express with that statement. You think Jesus was ok with being crucified? It sounds as if you said: "Jesus, he took it all, and he was all for it". Blasphemy at its best... I don´t know how to interprete your words any different. When Jesus was crucified, he called from the cross. "God, my God, why did you leave me?" ...to imply that he was ok with capital punishment (and especially in his own case) is really... I don´t know what to say

..other than to cite the warning of the Bible not to twist its words.
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Old 12-14-2005, 07:03 PM   #388
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dreadsox


There is far to much....VAGUERY....in that statement.
LOL

Ok, let's just look at the beginning;

"Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. 2Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves."

This would mean that governments that do allow capital punishment for adultery, homosexuality, etc. are established by God and those killings would be right for they follow the law.

and that's just the intro...
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Old 12-14-2005, 07:07 PM   #389
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Oh sure...don;t be vague anymore...LOL And I am finding it increasingly more difficult to argue this vein because I do not believe it!

LOL
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Old 12-14-2005, 07:18 PM   #390
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Oh sure...don;t be vague anymore...LOL And I am finding it increasingly more difficult to argue this vein because I do not believe it!

LOL
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