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Motive vs Intent: A critical analysis

PARADIGM_L0ST
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3/11/2011 1:14:51 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
Two hypothetical murders occurred in a convenient store.

In the first murder, the motive was determined to be for armed robbery. When apprehended and questioned about his motive, the suspect stated that he killed the cashier to not leave a living witness to testify against him.

In the second murder that occurred a few days later, when the other suspect was questioned, he told authorities that the murder was racially motivated. He stated that he hated Pakistani people, so he killed him.

During the separate trials, Defendant #1 was found guilty of homicide in the 1st degree and given a sentence of 25 years, 15 for good behavior.

Because the other trial was racially motivated, the court found him guilty of homicide in the first degree and the judge sentenced Defendant #2 to Life in prison, with no possibility of parole.

Now, the fundamental question regarding jurisprudence comes in to play. Two people were unjustly murdered. The criminal intent for both crimes was Murder 1, meaning that the murders were premeditated. Should motive factor in with the severity of the crime?

If murder is murder, why should the reason for the murder make it more or less reprehensible?

Discuss.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
Greyparrot
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3/11/2011 1:20:39 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
Perhaps people fear that racial killing amounts to treason as they fear a militant racial war with an army of racists possibly arising from acceptance of racial murders.Treason has a stiffer penalty. I do not agree at all, I am only throwing this out there.
PARADIGM_L0ST
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3/11/2011 1:22:33 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 1:20:39 PM, Greyparrot wrote:
Perhaps people fear that racial killing amounts to treason as they fear a militant racial war with an army of racists possibly arising from acceptance of racial murders.Treason has a stiffer penalty. I do not agree at all, I am only throwing this out there.:

That would be a pretty big straw man, and if any activist judge cited that as the reason, I'd seek to have him disbarred.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
Rob1_Billion
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3/11/2011 1:23:04 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
Motive certainly must be considered. As to how they create laws or make deteriminations based on those motives... well that's the hard part. This is precisely why I believe all actions that are punishable should not be pre-determined as crimes in the first place - you end up getting nonsensical answers like this with any broad-sweeping rule. Garbage in, garbage out.

When people are bred to compete, overbearing restrictions must be applied nearly ubiquitously. In a cooperative society, problems would simply be brought to attention when their negative effects are sustained, and at that point the community can come up with a creative solution to the problem that doesn't involve blood and tears.
kfc
Greyparrot
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3/11/2011 1:28:41 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 1:23:04 PM, Rob1_Billion wrote:
Motive certainly must be considered. As to how they create laws or make determinations based on those motives... well that's the hard part.

More to the point, punishing people by intent is basically the same as thought police. It is now a crime just for thinking a certain way. Scary.
PARADIGM_L0ST
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3/11/2011 1:35:49 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 1:23:04 PM, Rob1_Billion wrote:
Motive certainly must be considered.:

Agreed, but isn't it only relevant in determining guilt/innocence? How should it play a role in sentencing?

As to how they create laws or make deteriminations based on those motives... well that's the hard part.:

President Obama signed in to law legislation that says if a crime was committed due to racial motives, that an additional crime was heaped on them to maximize punishment. But why is it necessary? If you're guilty of murder, why would you be more guilty of murder because of the reason?

When people are bred to compete, overbearing restrictions must be applied nearly ubiquitously. In a cooperative society, problems would simply be brought to attention when their negative effects are sustained, and at that point the community can come up with a creative solution to the problem that doesn't involve blood and tears.:

Please don't derail my thread in to a communist rant. Thanks.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
PARADIGM_L0ST
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3/11/2011 1:37:28 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 1:28:41 PM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/11/2011 1:23:04 PM, Rob1_Billion wrote:
Motive certainly must be considered. As to how they create laws or make determinations based on those motives... well that's the hard part.

More to the point, punishing people by intent is basically the same as thought police. It is now a crime just for thinking a certain way. Scary.:

This is what I'm getting at. You figured it out pretty fast, you wise 'ole avian you!

Yes, it sets a dangerous precedent, making it unpredictable on how far we punish social taboos versus punishing actual crimes.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
Rob1_Billion
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3/11/2011 2:27:07 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 1:35:49 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:
At 3/11/2011 1:23:04 PM, Rob1_Billion wrote:
Motive certainly must be considered.:

Agreed, but isn't it only relevant in determining guilt/innocence? How should it play a role in sentencing?

I don't believe in a prescription, I believe in taking all relevant facts into account and deciding what to do.

As to how they create laws or make deteriminations based on those motives... well that's the hard part.:

President Obama signed in to law legislation that says if a crime was committed due to racial motives, that an additional crime was heaped on them to maximize punishment. But why is it necessary? If you're guilty of murder, why would you be more guilty of murder because of the reason?

Murder and racism are different violations. But then again, racism isn't a thing in and of itself without an action, so it really cannot be punished in this way. If we were taking these problems on a case-by-case basis, then one could factor in the racism and perhaps prescribe a remedy that addresses that particular motivation.

When people are bred to compete, overbearing restrictions must be applied nearly ubiquitously. In a cooperative society, problems would simply be brought to attention when their negative effects are sustained, and at that point the community can come up with a creative solution to the problem that doesn't involve blood and tears.:

Please don't derail my thread in to a communist rant. Thanks.

It's either back myself up continuously or give succinct answers that people will immediately want explained. Have it your way.
kfc
feverish
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3/11/2011 2:49:19 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
Motive and circumstance should always be taken into account when determing sentence, whatever the crime.

One man steals a loaf of bread to feed hs family, another defrauds a bunch of elderly people for their pensions. Both are guilty of theft but one deserves more punishment than the other.
PARADIGM_L0ST
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3/11/2011 2:52:26 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
Agreed, but isn't it only relevant in determining guilt/innocence? How should it play a role in sentencing?

I don't believe in a prescription, I believe in taking all relevant facts into account and deciding what to do.:

So then question in the two cases would be why murder for greed is less heinous than murder for racism.

Murder and racism are different violations. But then again, racism isn't a thing in and of itself without an action, so it really cannot be punished in this way. If we were taking these problems on a case-by-case basis, then one could factor in the racism and perhaps prescribe a remedy that addresses that particular motivation.:

But this is an additional charge to the murder. The murder is being charged on the basis of the action, but the racism is being charged on the basis of a..... thought.

Please don't derail my thread in to a communist rant. Thanks.

It's either back myself up continuously or give succinct answers that people will immediately want explained. Have it your way.:

I don't see the relevance. If you can show correlation, then so be it.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
PARADIGM_L0ST
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3/11/2011 2:56:58 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 2:49:19 PM, feverish wrote:
Motive and circumstance should always be taken into account when determing sentence, whatever the crime.

One man steals a loaf of bread to feed hs family, another defrauds a bunch of elderly people for their pensions. Both are guilty of theft but one deserves more punishment than the other.:

But both are based on actions. In my scenario both are based on actions too (murder), but only one is based also on thought -- thoughts that are perceived as aberrant behavior to society.

One man killed and robbed. He killed in order to facilitate the robbery. The other man killed because he didn't like the other man.

Therefore, the one is being punished more severely on account of his bad thoughts. If that's not Orwellian, I'm not sure what is.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
Indophile
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3/11/2011 2:57:56 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 1:14:51 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:

If murder is murder, why should the reason for the murder make it more or less reprehensible?

Discuss.

There are two types of crimes. Crimes committed due to basic human nature, and then crimes committed due to the existing mores of society. (societal pressures)

The second part is most interesting.

In some parts of India, the village elders will allow parents to kill their child, if the child marries outside its caste. Mothers usually kill their daughters, in such scenarios. Or it's the brother, who kills his sister. It's called "honour killing". If the parents don't kill their child, they are looked down upon by the villagers and made to suffer a lot.

Now, this murder has occured just because that's the way that society is. There must've been some logical reason for society to be structured this way during some point in time, but now, in our wisdom, we find that this model no longer works, and we need to change the structure. So, such crimes are treated in a harsher manner in an attempt to change that fabric of society.

We don't exist in a vacuum. There are some crimes that threaten the very fabric of society and have to be made reprehensible if the society hopes to function in a smooth and productive manner.

So, I'd say the reason for murder matters a lot.
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GeoLaureate8
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3/11/2011 3:03:20 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 1:14:51 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:
Should motive factor in with the severity of the crime?

Well, not severity, but it should be factored in when determining the atrociousness of the crime.

If murder is murder, why should the reason for the murder make it more or less reprehensible?

Simply saying "murder is murder" is intentionally leaving out other aspects of the crime. One is a racial hatred motivated murder and the other was done for the confidentiality of the offender.

The racial hatred motivated murderer should certainly receive a harsher punishment.
"We must raise the standard of the Old, free, decentralized, and strictly limited Republic."
-- Murray Rothbard

"The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended."
-- Frederic Bastiat
Indophile
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3/11/2011 3:06:22 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 3:03:20 PM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
At 3/11/2011 1:14:51 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:
Should motive factor in with the severity of the crime?

Well, not severity, but it should be factored in when determining the atrociousness of the crime.

If murder is murder, why should the reason for the murder make it more or less reprehensible?

Simply saying "murder is murder" is intentionally leaving out other aspects of the crime. One is a racial hatred motivated murder and the other was done for the confidentiality of the offender.

The racial hatred motivated murderer should certainly receive a harsher punishment.

Why should he? That was the original question.
You will say that I don't really know you
And it will be true.
GeoLaureate8
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3/11/2011 3:14:31 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 3:06:22 PM, Indophile wrote:
At 3/11/2011 3:03:20 PM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
At 3/11/2011 1:14:51 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:
Should motive factor in with the severity of the crime?

Well, not severity, but it should be factored in when determining the atrociousness of the crime.

If murder is murder, why should the reason for the murder make it more or less reprehensible?

Simply saying "murder is murder" is intentionally leaving out other aspects of the crime. One is a racial hatred motivated murder and the other was done for the confidentiality of the offender.

The racial hatred motivated murderer should certainly receive a harsher punishment.

Why should he? That was the original question.

I just explained it. Racial hatred motivated murder is more atrocious than killing someone for an actual instrumental reason. Thus, whichever is more atrocious gets a more severe punishment.
"We must raise the standard of the Old, free, decentralized, and strictly limited Republic."
-- Murray Rothbard

"The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended."
-- Frederic Bastiat
darkkermit
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3/11/2011 3:15:27 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
The government orders killings all the time, but it isn't considered 'muder' due to its intention See debate between koopin and lovelife:
http://www.debate.org...
Open borders debate:
http://www.debate.org...
Greyparrot
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3/11/2011 3:19:46 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 2:49:19 PM, feverish wrote:
Motive and circumstance should always be taken into account when determing sentence, whatever the crime.

One man steals a loaf of bread to feed hs family, another defrauds a bunch of elderly people for their pensions. Both are guilty of theft but one deserves more punishment than the other.

According to the thought police, the man stealing food to feed his family may have the INTENT to get his neighbors together and start a riot and destroy the food stores. Hence the 1st person gets a stronger sentence.

This is VERY dangerous ground, punishment based on intent.
Indophile
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3/11/2011 3:20:06 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 3:14:31 PM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
At 3/11/2011 3:06:22 PM, Indophile wrote:
At 3/11/2011 3:03:20 PM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
At 3/11/2011 1:14:51 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:
Should motive factor in with the severity of the crime?

Well, not severity, but it should be factored in when determining the atrociousness of the crime.

If murder is murder, why should the reason for the murder make it more or less reprehensible?

Simply saying "murder is murder" is intentionally leaving out other aspects of the crime. One is a racial hatred motivated murder and the other was done for the confidentiality of the offender.

The racial hatred motivated murderer should certainly receive a harsher punishment.

Why should he? That was the original question.

I just explained it. Racial hatred motivated murder is more atrocious than killing someone for an actual instrumental reason. Thus, whichever is more atrocious gets a more severe punishment.

Why is it more atrocious? That was the original question.
You will say that I don't really know you
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PARADIGM_L0ST
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3/11/2011 3:20:51 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
Now, this murder has occured just because that's the way that society is. There must've been some logical reason for society to be structured this way during some point in time, but now, in our wisdom, we find that this model no longer works, and we need to change the structure. So, such crimes are treated in a harsher manner in an attempt to change that fabric of society.:

I realize that this is the sociological reason for it. I guess what I'm asking is whether or not you agree with it.

We don't exist in a vacuum. There are some crimes that threaten the very fabric of society and have to be made reprehensible if the society hopes to function in a smooth and productive manner.:

Yeah, murder. But let's look at it from another perspective. Say you are the parent of the 1st murdered cashier. Your son was murdered for money; to satiate human greed. His murderer gets 15 years with good behavior. The murderer of your son's co-worker receives Life in prison just because it was racially motivated.

BOTH of them were murdered in the 1st degree (intent). The only thing different was the motive. Why should your son's murderer get a slap on the wrist versus the co-worker's murderer?

Why not just make ALL murder in the 1st degree life in prison so that all is not equitable and just? Remember, intent is what measures the ACTION, and motive explains why they decided to do it at all.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
PARADIGM_L0ST
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3/11/2011 3:26:38 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 3:03:20 PM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
At 3/11/2011 1:14:51 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:
Should motive factor in with the severity of the crime?

Well, not severity, but it should be factored in when determining the atrociousness of the crime.:

That's what intent is for. That's what determines the difference between manslaughter in the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd degree, and murder in the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd degree.

The difference between intent and motive is critical here.

Simply saying "murder is murder" is intentionally leaving out other aspects of the crime. One is a racial hatred motivated murder and the other was done for the confidentiality of the offender.:

No, this isn't measuring the difference between someone murdering their wife's killer in the heat of passion versus a premeditated stalking and torturing of someone. That's intent.

This is simply saying that you shouldn't kill people because of their ethnicity. Well, to be sure, you shouldn't murder anyone at all. But is murdering for race really worse or less bad than murdering them for greed? The end result is still the same. MURDER.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
Indophile
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3/11/2011 3:34:00 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 3:20:51 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:
Now, this murder has occured just because that's the way that society is. There must've been some logical reason for society to be structured this way during some point in time, but now, in our wisdom, we find that this model no longer works, and we need to change the structure. So, such crimes are treated in a harsher manner in an attempt to change that fabric of society.:

I realize that this is the sociological reason for it. I guess what I'm asking is whether or not you agree with it.

We don't exist in a vacuum. There are some crimes that threaten the very fabric of society and have to be made reprehensible if the society hopes to function in a smooth and productive manner.:

Yeah, murder. But let's look at it from another perspective. Say you are the parent of the 1st murdered cashier. Your son was murdered for money; to satiate human greed. His murderer gets 15 years with good behavior. The murderer of your son's co-worker receives Life in prison just because it was racially motivated.

BOTH of them were murdered in the 1st degree (intent). The only thing different was the motive. Why should your son's murderer get a slap on the wrist versus the co-worker's murderer?

Why not just make ALL murder in the 1st degree life in prison so that all is not equitable and just? Remember, intent is what measures the ACTION, and motive explains why they decided to do it at all.

Why does society punish crime in the first place? You are saying because it's just. I say, if it is to be just, then the decision should be left to the injured party. Wouldn't that be equitable? And more just?

But society does not do that. Why society punishes crime is because it wants to function smoothly and productively. In order to ensure this, all individuals/entities that pose threats to it, have their freedoms negated. It's also done as a deterrent and as a warning signal to potential criminals. Logically, those that pose the larger threat, lose more of their rights.

Society also recognizes the inherent worth of a human life, and the values of redemption and mercy. That's why the punishment is not left to the injured party. Else people would kill even for having been insulted.

So, it isn't as if society is punishing my son's murderer in order for me to feel as if justice has been done. What difference would it make to me if the murderer has been sentenced to 12 yrs or 15 yrs or even for life? Yeah, I'd feel a bit vindicated, my anger would be assuaged a bit, but my son ain't coming back.
You will say that I don't really know you
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mattrodstrom
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3/11/2011 4:27:05 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 1:14:51 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:
Two hypothetical murders occurred in a convenient store.

In the first murder, the motive was determined to be for armed robbery. When apprehended and questioned about his motive, the suspect stated that he killed the cashier to not leave a living witness to testify against him.

In the second murder that occurred a few days later, when the other suspect was questioned, he told authorities that the murder was racially motivated. He stated that he hated Pakistani people, so he killed him.
Discuss.

well.. I am in no way condoning "hate-crimes"... or racism.

but... it would seem that the First case the Perp's MORE clearly nothing more than Worthless scum than in the second..

b/c the second one seems like he's possibly a bit crazy... whereas the first guy's in a very straightforward manner a cold, completely uncaring person...

The Second guy's reason seems like it might potentially be rooted in delusion... or actual his actually being retarded and being influenced by what others suggest.
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Metaphysics:
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Ore_Ele
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3/11/2011 4:39:46 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 1:28:41 PM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/11/2011 1:23:04 PM, Rob1_Billion wrote:
Motive certainly must be considered. As to how they create laws or make determinations based on those motives... well that's the hard part.

More to the point, punishing people by intent is basically the same as thought police. It is now a crime just for thinking a certain way. Scary.

Of course. You wouldn't think that killing someone with intent should be treated the same as accidently killing someone in a car crash that was your fault, would you? That has nothing but intent for a difference.
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PARADIGM_L0ST
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3/11/2011 5:55:52 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
So, it isn't as if society is punishing my son's murderer in order for me to feel as if justice has been done. What difference would it make to me if the murderer has been sentenced to 12 yrs or 15 yrs or even for life? Yeah, I'd feel a bit vindicated, my anger would be assuaged a bit, but my son ain't coming back.:

This doesn't have anything to do with my opening post. You're basically saying that justice is a figment of our imaginations so, f*ck it, I guess, is your point?
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
Indophile
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3/11/2011 9:51:51 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 5:55:52 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:
So, it isn't as if society is punishing my son's murderer in order for me to feel as if justice has been done. What difference would it make to me if the murderer has been sentenced to 12 yrs or 15 yrs or even for life? Yeah, I'd feel a bit vindicated, my anger would be assuaged a bit, but my son ain't coming back.:

This doesn't have anything to do with my opening post. You're basically saying that justice is a figment of our imaginations so, f*ck it, I guess, is your point?

Not at all. When you said that your son's murderer gets 15 yrs and a racially motivated murderer gets life, where's the justice.

What I said was, what do you think should be the punishment for your son's murderer? Would you be satisfied with 15 yrs? (If you did not have the other murderer's punishment to compare) Would you be satisfied with life? Execution? What?

Only if the punishment is according to your expectation will you feel that justice has been served.

You are feeling hard done by because your son's murderer did not merit a life sentence when the other guy did. Well, that's valid according to you. But it's not the same for society.

My whole point was, society does not do punishment for the sake of justice. It simply cannot, because it's not dealing just with you. It has to take in the bigger picture, and think about its own benefits and necessities. And it cannot afford to be so flippant with the lives of individuals. It always has to try to see if it could reform them, give them a second chance, etc. For it, every human life has value, and it has to go to the utmost to preserve it.

And society is able to do that, because it's unbiased emotionally.
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belle
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3/11/2011 10:33:05 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 3:26:38 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:
This is simply saying that you shouldn't kill people because of their ethnicity. Well, to be sure, you shouldn't murder anyone at all. But is murdering for race really worse or less bad than murdering them for greed? The end result is still the same. MURDER.

the longer sentence may not reflect a belief that racially motivated murders are "worse" than other murders. rather, it could be a reflection of the fact that the two pose different levels of danger to society at large. someone who kills in order to protect themselves had a situational motivation, whereas someone whose kill is racially motivated has a dispositional motivation. the second is less likely than the first to change, so the racist killer can be thought of as posing a greater danger if released because he is more likely to kill again.
evidently i only come to ddo to avoid doing homework...
PARADIGM_L0ST
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3/11/2011 10:46:51 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
What I said was, what do you think should be the punishment for your son's murderer? Would you be satisfied with 15 yrs? (If you did not have the other murderer's punishment to compare) Would you be satisfied with life? Execution? What?:

Well, first things first... I'm completely, and unequivocally drunk (my disclaimer)...
If that we're my son, nothing is going to bring him back. Wait, this is a tangent. Ah, f*ck.... I'm drunk....

Only if the punishment is according to your expectation will you feel that justice has been served.:

Just answer the question as it was posed. If you were the family member of the murdered, would 15 years for armed robbery via homicide be sufficient versus homicide via racism resulting in Life Imprisonment for his co-worker?

My whole point was, society does not do punishment for the sake of justice. It simply cannot, because it's not dealing just with you. It has to take in the bigger picture, and think about its own benefits and necessities. And it cannot afford to be so flippant with the lives of individuals. It always has to try to see if it could reform them, give them a second chance, etc. For it, every human life has value, and it has to go to the utmost to preserve it.:

Okay.... I don't see where you're going with that...... Bear in mind, I'm hammered drunk....
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
Greyparrot
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3/11/2011 10:49:10 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 10:33:05 PM, belle wrote:
At 3/11/2011 3:26:38 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:
This is simply saying that you shouldn't kill people because of their ethnicity. Well, to be sure, you shouldn't murder anyone at all. But is murdering for race really worse or less bad than murdering them for greed? The end result is still the same. MURDER.

the longer sentence may not reflect a belief that racially motivated murders are "worse" than other murders. rather, it could be a reflection of the fact that the two pose different levels of danger to society at large. someone who kills in order to protect themselves had a situational motivation, whereas someone whose kill is racially motivated has a dispositional motivation. the second is less likely than the first to change, so the racist killer can be thought of as posing a greater danger if released because he is more likely to kill again.

I tend to agree with this in the abstract sense.
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3/11/2011 10:49:56 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 3/11/2011 10:33:05 PM, belle wrote:
At 3/11/2011 3:26:38 PM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:
This is simply saying that you shouldn't kill people because of their ethnicity. Well, to be sure, you shouldn't murder anyone at all. But is murdering for race really worse or less bad than murdering them for greed? The end result is still the same. MURDER.

the longer sentence may not reflect a belief that racially motivated murders are "worse" than other murders. rather, it could be a reflection of the fact that the two pose different levels of danger to society at large. someone who kills in order to protect themselves had a situational motivation, whereas someone whose kill is racially motivated has a dispositional motivation. the second is less likely than the first to change, so the racist killer can be thought of as posing a greater danger if released because he is more likely to kill again.:

Isn't that irrelevant, belle? They were both charged and prosecuted with Murder I. Remember, I'm distinguishing between "intent" and "motive." I'm f*cking wasted... *sigh*.... This is diffcult/
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)