The Washington Free Beacon, a project of the 501(c)4 Center for American Freedom, is a nonprofit online newspaper that began publication on February 7, 2012. Dedicated to uncovering the stories that the professional left hopes will never see the light of day, the Free Beacon produces in-depth and investigative reporting on a wide range of issues, including public policy, government affairs, international security, and media criticism. Whether it’s exposing cronyism, dissecting the relationship between the progressive movement and the mainstream media, finding out just who is shaping our domestic and foreign policy and why, or highlighting the threats to American security and peace in a dangerous world, the Free Beacon is committed to serving the public interest by reporting news and information that currently is not being fully covered by other news organizations.
The Beacon’s editor in chief is Matthew Continetti. Sonny Bunch is the managing editor. Bill Gertz is senior editor.
In short? American Right Wing Magazine. Gotcha!
Sonny Bunch has a rather interesting take on the botched Oklahoma Execution. Interesting in that it shows the poison that has seeped into the Culture of the Right Wing America.
What we have here is the dialogue of bravado. Look let us not beat around the bush here. There are people out there who say things that are terrible but never do them. There are people who do things that are terrible after saying they would. Since one piece of gutter journalism deserves another? I give you a person who did something terrible. There are probably gun nuts furiously stroking their weapons gesticulating furiously about a man’s right to defend his castle by executing thieves. This man will probably be a poster child for the furious wank and conspiracy theory..
But let us concentrate on Sonny here.
Last night, Oklahoma was scheduled to execute two individuals. The second execution was to be of a man who raped and murdered an 11-month-old girl. That execution never took place because the first execution—that of a man who was involved in the murder and burial alive of a 19-year-old woman who walked in on a robbery—ran into some difficulties. The state was using a new lethal injection cocktail and, it seems, the poor murderer suffered a bit before expiring of a heart attack.
The difference between me and Sonny is this.
I would treat Hitler the same as any of my other patients. Even the most hated man in the world would get the healthcare he deserves. I hold my ethics seriously. I am not judge and jury to determine who lives and who dies based on their morals.
There is a difference to the dark humour of a terrorist accidentally blowing himself up. He deserved it, he was destroyed by his own violence.
But this is torture. This is (like Sarah Palin) a man joking about the death of another person at the hands of a state apparatus that we know has probably killed people it shouldn’t have.
How can you claim to be a moral person and the core of morality compared to my decadence.
I want to highlight two reactions to this “botched” execution. The first was an absurd bit of moral lunacy, the second a more nuanced and interesting question.
The moral lunacy first: Anti-death-penalty advocates seized on this instance to post charts such as this one that purport to show the United States is just as bad as China and Iran because we execute criminals and they execute criminals and all executions are obviously the same. The suggestion that the United States taking decades to execute first degree murderers and Iran hanging gays from cranes and China murdering political dissidents is in any way similar is an idiotic bit of false moral equivalence, one that proves the deep unseriousness of a certain segment of the anti-death penalty contingent.
Yet the man gleefully chortling over the painful and slow death of another (albeit more terrible) man is somehow morally superior.
See the thing is these people are being executed for crimes. They broke the law so they are being killed as a punishment and a deterrent to prevent others from doing these crimes.
Some of these crimes are legal in other countries.
But luckily, in the USA. This sort of execution is set aside for murderers of the “worst sort” rather than political dissidents.
But that doesn’t make it right. It is still the taking of a life and the moment one innocent person is killed, the apparatus of the execution has become the apparatus of murder. Who will hang for that?
If your argument is “shut up about executions, at least we aren’t China or Iran” then perhaps you need a better argument. You hold yourselves to the best of the world. Everyone seeks to be the best. This is the problem with the delusion of exception.
See Sonny Bunch thinks no other country in the world has reached the lofty heights of the USA. USA = No. 1 and the rest of the world is filled with ignorant savages and the ghosts of the howling wastes. To them, America is the West. The rest of us may as well not exist. Nothing we do matters, nothing we do is moral. He sees us as sad places where freedom of speech is curtailed because the GLBT can get married. We aren’t free because we cannot own guns. And we all die young, crushed under a death panel.
The second reaction—revulsion that the state would engage in “cruel and unusual” punishment by having the subject of an execution suffer before he expires—is a bit more reasonable and something that we should address. It is, of course, worth noting that Oklahoma in all likelihood did not intend for this poor murderer to suffer a bit before he died. As such, the constitutional worries seem moot. And, frankly, as someone who believes that the death penalty serves as retribution rather than deterrence,* I have a hard time getting upset when someone as disgusting as the condemned suffers a bit before expiring. But as a general matter and a basic principle, I don’t think the government should be in the business of intending to make people suffer horrifically before they die.
I have written about the actual execution here.
And it is here we must point out that rather than learning from the rest of the world we see the USA determined to keep executing people and effectively use untried and untested drugs to kill in an inhumane way.
You have a hard time getting upset about it? Well? A man just got killed using untried medication being heavily misused by barely competent people over 45 minutes. And that is okay with you because no one meant to let him suffer?
So how do we minimize suffering of the condemned? Our biggest problem as a society is that we have decided bloodlessness is a suitable stand-in for lack of suffering (and a way to protect the sensibilities of those who support the death penalty). Well, the pursuit of a bloodless execution seems to have backfired pretty badly here. And there’s evidence that previous lethal injection cocktails weren’t much better. Allow me to propose a rather radical alternative: the guillotine.
Actually it was the banning of the common drugs with legal riders preventing their use for executions and embargoes from the EU that forced the USA to play “science experiment”.
Allow me to propose a radical “fuck you”. You want to fucking guillotine people? After the entire fucking developed world has told you that your usage of medicine for murder is an ugly stain on the human conscience, your response is “would it be better if it was a guillotine”.
In this we truly see the barbarism of the death penalty supporter. Bring Back Hanging Mate! That will teach em! Except when hanging was about, people still murdered and people still killed.
In fact? After hanging was abolished and we began community policing, the number of murders and violent crime generally fell because police couldn’t look like they were doing work simply by getting murderers to swing.
There are other, less dramatic, ways, of course. Hanging and firing squads would probably be quicker and more painless than lethal injection or the electric chair. But the guillotine really seems to solve everyone’s problems: It was designed to deliver an efficient, quick, and painless death. It performs that task admirably. I understand the irony of a reactionary such as myself embracing the Terror’s preferred method of execution, but one must give credit where it’s due.
Er… No. Hanging requires a skilled hangman or else you end up without a head or struggling. I have rescued people from hangings (self inflicted) who lived. Hanging is a slow process if not for the skill of a hangman. And this is a skill that is lost since hangmen were once apprenticed and none really exist. Also? Still people botched hangings.
Firing Squads? Really? Man people really think being shot doesn’t hurt? Do you know why there is a firing squad rather than a single bullet? Because no one wanted too know whose bullet was the one that killed the victim.
And the joke is that the Guillotine was considered barbaric because of the understanding that the brain survived for a few seconds or minutes after death and so was capable of feeling pain. Some noted response to stimuli but whether this is autonomic or under control, we will never know.
If we’re going to do something—and a large number of Americans and American states are pretty committed to performing executions—we ought to do it right. And “right” in this case means a quick and painless death. I can’t really imagine any reasonable objections to a widespread adoption of the guillotine.
Have you considered “stopping”?
Either this post is parody that I have not understood or it is a genuine attempt to try and discuss alternatives after the medical industry has spoken out against the usage of its technology to cause harm for the sake of causing harm.
He’s got a disclaimer though.
For what it’s worth: I believe the studies that show the death penalty does nothing to deter crime yet support it anyway, as I believe there are some crimes so heinous that there can be no forgiveness from society. This plays into my whole theory of the judicial system, which is that we should imprison fewer nonviolent offenders, rehabilitate those prisoners who can be rehabilitated, and severely punish the rest. I also think we should probably execute fewer people and heighten the standards of evidence required before an execution can be obtained, but that’s a post for another day
Jailing people for life is not forgiveness. It is stating that they are so horrible that they cannot participate in society anymore and lose all rights and privileges associated with those. The right to live is his though and the killing of a human being should not be part of the judiciary except in the direst of circumstances such as “police response to armed people” rather than an unarmed and currently harmless man.