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Debate topic:Death penalty is never justified

wrichcirw
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4/21/2014 2:18:25 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
I went ahead and created this thread to facilitate discussion on this debate:

Death penalty is never justified, under any circumstance

http://www.debate.org...

Personally, I think I should have opened with my closing...I should have just led with the absolute most extreme example possible.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
TheOncomingStorm
Posts: 249
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4/22/2014 9:05:26 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/21/2014 2:18:25 PM, wrichcirw wrote:
I went ahead and created this thread to facilitate discussion on this debate:

Death penalty is never justified, under any circumstance

http://www.debate.org...

Personally, I think I should have opened with my closing...I should have just led with the absolute most extreme example possible.

For me the debate was honestly won by the end of first round. When you brought up the worst crime imagined then increased infinitely, it was pretty clear that at some point the death penalty would be justified.

Personally I tend to lean away from the death penalty as much as possible, but there are some cases where someone both deserves to die (in other words, has created a heinous crime) and can't be rehabilitated (mental disorder or something of the sort).
Official "Director of Weather and Hyperbole in the Maximum Degree of Mice and Men" of the FREEDO bureaucracy.
Cermank
Posts: 3,773
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4/23/2014 7:07:27 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/22/2014 9:05:26 AM, TheOncomingStorm wrote:
At 4/21/2014 2:18:25 PM, wrichcirw wrote:
I went ahead and created this thread to facilitate discussion on this debate:

Death penalty is never justified, under any circumstance

http://www.debate.org...

Personally, I think I should have opened with my closing...I should have just led with the absolute most extreme example possible.

For me the debate was honestly won by the end of first round. When you brought up the worst crime imagined then increased infinitely, it was pretty clear that at some point the death penalty would be justified.

Personally I tend to lean away from the death penalty as much as possible, but there are some cases where someone both deserves to die (in other words, has created a heinous crime) and can't be rehabilitated (mental disorder or something of the sort).

I dunno, did you read the second round? I'd love to listen to your response to the restorative punishment thing, which I thought addressed the 'he deserves to die' and 'can't be rehabilitated' thing.
TheOncomingStorm
Posts: 249
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4/23/2014 10:54:03 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/23/2014 7:07:27 PM, Cermank wrote:
At 4/22/2014 9:05:26 AM, TheOncomingStorm wrote:
At 4/21/2014 2:18:25 PM, wrichcirw wrote:
I went ahead and created this thread to facilitate discussion on this debate:

Death penalty is never justified, under any circumstance

http://www.debate.org...

Personally, I think I should have opened with my closing...I should have just led with the absolute most extreme example possible.

For me the debate was honestly won by the end of first round. When you brought up the worst crime imagined then increased infinitely, it was pretty clear that at some point the death penalty would be justified.

Personally I tend to lean away from the death penalty as much as possible, but there are some cases where someone both deserves to die (in other words, has created a heinous crime) and can't be rehabilitated (mental disorder or something of the sort).

I dunno, did you read the second round? I'd love to listen to your response to the restorative punishment thing, which I thought addressed the 'he deserves to die' and 'can't be rehabilitated' thing.

Yeah, I read the whole thing. The response to it was essentially "when a point of genocide or threat of genocide has been reached, the person needs to die." At that point it becomes a need not just a moral thing. So it actually becomes a moral obligation (or moral "must") kill that person if you value human life as a whole.
Official "Director of Weather and Hyperbole in the Maximum Degree of Mice and Men" of the FREEDO bureaucracy.
Cermank
Posts: 3,773
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4/24/2014 1:00:00 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/23/2014 10:54:03 PM, TheOncomingStorm wrote:
At 4/23/2014 7:07:27 PM, Cermank wrote:
At 4/22/2014 9:05:26 AM, TheOncomingStorm wrote:
At 4/21/2014 2:18:25 PM, wrichcirw wrote:
I went ahead and created this thread to facilitate discussion on this debate:

Death penalty is never justified, under any circumstance

http://www.debate.org...

Personally, I think I should have opened with my closing...I should have just led with the absolute most extreme example possible.

For me the debate was honestly won by the end of first round. When you brought up the worst crime imagined then increased infinitely, it was pretty clear that at some point the death penalty would be justified.

Personally I tend to lean away from the death penalty as much as possible, but there are some cases where someone both deserves to die (in other words, has created a heinous crime) and can't be rehabilitated (mental disorder or something of the sort).

I dunno, did you read the second round? I'd love to listen to your response to the restorative punishment thing, which I thought addressed the 'he deserves to die' and 'can't be rehabilitated' thing.

Yeah, I read the whole thing. The response to it was essentially "when a phe respoint of genocide or threat of genocide has been reached, the person needs to die." At that point it becomes a need not just a moral thing. So it actually becomes a moral obligation (or moral "must") kill that person if you value human life as a whole.

That wasn't the response to it at all. The response was that the cost of when the genocide point has been reached, the cost is not only the lives that have been lost- but the socio cultural conditions that made him that way. Thus its our duty to discover/ detect a problem and try to address it through the variety of tools we have at our disposal (/medical, psychological, mass media, educational, whatever). THAT is something that *must* be addressed in order to ensure that the previous socio economic conditions do not lead to another genocide victim being born, because killing the first one does not address the root cause of the problem.

I understand that the resolution almost seems a jerk-reaction-reject, but the reason I debated it was to discover my limits in the DP case. Perhaps I should have lead with my closing argument, but I was learning through it too. I mean, basically you are saying that if there is a genocide perpetrator, he *must* be killed, without ever supporting your assertion. We can just make sure that he is no longer a threat to the nation, and use him to ensure that future genocide perpetrators are kept at bay.
TheOncomingStorm
Posts: 249
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4/24/2014 5:52:43 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/24/2014 1:00:00 AM, Cermank wrote:
At 4/23/2014 10:54:03 PM, TheOncomingStorm wrote:
At 4/23/2014 7:07:27 PM, Cermank wrote:
At 4/22/2014 9:05:26 AM, TheOncomingStorm wrote:
At 4/21/2014 2:18:25 PM, wrichcirw wrote:
I went ahead and created this thread to facilitate discussion on this debate:

Death penalty is never justified, under any circumstance

http://www.debate.org...

Personally, I think I should have opened with my closing...I should have just led with the absolute most extreme example possible.

For me the debate was honestly won by the end of first round. When you brought up the worst crime imagined then increased infinitely, it was pretty clear that at some point the death penalty would be justified.

Personally I tend to lean away from the death penalty as much as possible, but there are some cases where someone both deserves to die (in other words, has created a heinous crime) and can't be rehabilitated (mental disorder or something of the sort).

I dunno, did you read the second round? I'd love to listen to your response to the restorative punishment thing, which I thought addressed the 'he deserves to die' and 'can't be rehabilitated' thing.

Yeah, I read the whole thing. The response to it was essentially "when a phe respoint of genocide or threat of genocide has been reached, the person needs to die." At that point it becomes a need not just a moral thing. So it actually becomes a moral obligation (or moral "must") kill that person if you value human life as a whole.

That wasn't the response to it at all.

Well then I read it out of order, but that was in the debate. I think last round. It adequately responds to that point.

The response was that the cost of when the genocide point has been reached, the cost is not only the lives that have been lost- but the socio cultural conditions that made him that way. Thus its our duty to discover/ detect a problem and try to address it through the variety of tools we have at our disposal (/medical, psychological, mass media, educational, whatever). THAT is something that *must* be addressed in order to ensure that the previous socio economic conditions do not lead to another genocide victim being born, because killing the first one does not address the root cause of the problem.

I understand that the resolution almost seems a jerk-reaction-reject, but the reason I debated it was to discover my limits in the DP case. Perhaps I should have lead with my closing argument, but I was learning through it too.

I wouldn't make a resolution that allows for the use of hypotheticals to be included as hard examples, which you did by saying "under any circumstance."

I mean, basically you are saying that if there is a genocide perpetrator, he *must* be killed, without ever supporting your assertion.

If you value human life, one life compared to a nation or group of people is a small amount.

We can just make sure that he is no longer a threat to the nation,

Killing him does that.

and use him to ensure that future genocide perpetrators are kept at bay.

By deterrence i.e. death penalty? That sounds like an argument for the death penalty when I read it.
Official "Director of Weather and Hyperbole in the Maximum Degree of Mice and Men" of the FREEDO bureaucracy.
wrichcirw
Posts: 11,196
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4/25/2014 1:38:39 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/24/2014 1:00:00 AM, Cermank wrote:
At 4/23/2014 10:54:03 PM, TheOncomingStorm wrote:
At 4/23/2014 7:07:27 PM, Cermank wrote:
At 4/22/2014 9:05:26 AM, TheOncomingStorm wrote:
At 4/21/2014 2:18:25 PM, wrichcirw wrote:
I went ahead and created this thread to facilitate discussion on this debate:

Death penalty is never justified, under any circumstance

http://www.debate.org...

Personally, I think I should have opened with my closing...I should have just led with the absolute most extreme example possible.

For me the debate was honestly won by the end of first round. When you brought up the worst crime imagined then increased infinitely, it was pretty clear that at some point the death penalty would be justified.

Personally I tend to lean away from the death penalty as much as possible, but there are some cases where someone both deserves to die (in other words, has created a heinous crime) and can't be rehabilitated (mental disorder or something of the sort).

I dunno, did you read the second round? I'd love to listen to your response to the restorative punishment thing, which I thought addressed the 'he deserves to die' and 'can't be rehabilitated' thing.

Yeah, I read the whole thing. The response to it was essentially "when a phe respoint of genocide or threat of genocide has been reached, the person needs to die." At that point it becomes a need not just a moral thing. So it actually becomes a moral obligation (or moral "must") kill that person if you value human life as a whole.

That wasn't the response to it at all. The response was that the cost of when the genocide point has been reached, the cost is not only the lives that have been lost- but the socio cultural conditions that made him that way. Thus its our duty to discover/ detect a problem and try to address it through the variety of tools we have at our disposal (/medical, psychological, mass media, educational, whatever). THAT is something that *must* be addressed in order to ensure that the previous socio economic conditions do not lead to another genocide victim being born, because killing the first one does not address the root cause of the problem.

One thing I really did not understand about your reasoning was that you equated discovering causes to "restorative punishment". That's not really what rehabilitation is about...rehabilitation is the attempt to convince the perpetrator that it's in their best interests to not commit such crimes again.

Once you find out the causes, what is stopping you from killing this person, especially if rehabilitation is impossible?

I understand that the resolution almost seems a jerk-reaction-reject, but the reason I debated it was to discover my limits in the DP case. Perhaps I should have lead with my closing argument, but I was learning through it too. I mean, basically you are saying that if there is a genocide perpetrator, he *must* be killed, without ever supporting your assertion. We can just make sure that he is no longer a threat to the nation, and use him to ensure that future genocide perpetrators are kept at bay.

I just want to state that I do very much agree with most of your reasoning, and that prioritizing discovering causes is very much warranted if possible.

However, if discovering the cause is not possible and you're threatened with an extinction event, first you neutralize the threat however you can, even if that means killing a person to do it.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
wrichcirw
Posts: 11,196
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4/25/2014 1:40:47 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/25/2014 1:38:39 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 4/24/2014 1:00:00 AM, Cermank wrote:
At 4/23/2014 10:54:03 PM, TheOncomingStorm wrote:

Once you find out the causes, what is stopping you from killing this person, especially if rehabilitation is impossible?

Just to elaborate on this point, this just becomes a cost-benefit analysis, IMHO, in determining the risk that someone that is impossible to rehabilitate may one day escape and cause havoc again.

Given the extreme nature of the resolution, all I would need to do is to make that risk as high as possible and make the chance for rehabilitation as low as possible. That's exactly what I did...not sure how clear that message was in the debate.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
Cermank
Posts: 3,773
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4/28/2014 12:20:57 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/24/2014 5:52:43 PM, TheOncomingStorm wrote:
At 4/24/2014 1:00:00 AM, Cermank wrote:
At 4/23/2014 10:54:03 PM, TheOncomingStorm wrote:
At 4/23/2014 7:07:27 PM, Cermank wrote:
At 4/22/2014 9:05:26 AM, TheOncomingStorm wrote:
At 4/21/2014 2:18:25 PM, wrichcirw wrote:
I went ahead and created this thread to facilitate discussion on this debate:

Death penalty is never justified, under any circumstance

http://www.debate.org...

Personally, I think I should have opened with my closing...I should have just led with the absolute most extreme example possible.

For me the debate was honestly won by the end of first round. When you brought up the worst crime imagined then increased infinitely, it was pretty clear that at some point the death penalty would be justified.

Personally I tend to lean away from the death penalty as much as possible, but there are some cases where someone both deserves to die (in other words, has created a heinous crime) and can't be rehabilitated (mental disorder or something of the sort).

I dunno, did you read the second round? I'd love to listen to your response to the restorative punishment thing, which I thought addressed the 'he deserves to die' and 'can't be rehabilitated' thing.

Yeah, I read the whole thing. The response to it was essentially "when a phe respoint of genocide or threat of genocide has been reached, the person needs to die." At that point it becomes a need not just a moral thing. So it actually becomes a moral obligation (or moral "must") kill that person if you value human life as a whole.

That wasn't the response to it at all.

Well then I read it out of order, but that was in the debate. I think last round. It adequately responds to that point.

That wasn't the response, lol. The order doesn't really matter. I outlined my response in my argument.


The response was that the cost of when the genocide point has been reached, the cost is not only the lives that have been lost- but the socio cultural conditions that made him that way. Thus its our duty to discover/ detect a problem and try to address it through the variety of tools we have at our disposal (/medical, psychological, mass media, educational, whatever). THAT is something that *must* be addressed in order to ensure that the previous socio economic conditions do not lead to another genocide victim being born, because killing the first one does not address the root cause of the problem.

I understand that the resolution almost seems a jerk-reaction-reject, but the reason I debated it was to discover my limits in the DP case. Perhaps I should have lead with my closing argument, but I was learning through it too.

I wouldn't make a resolution that allows for the use of hypotheticals to be included as hard examples, which you did by saying "under any circumstance."

I don't make resolutions because I intend to win a debate. Winning really isn't important to me, restricting hypotheticals would just limit the extent of area I intend to cover in my debate.

I mean, basically you are saying that if there is a genocide perpetrator, he *must* be killed, without ever supporting your assertion.

If you value human life, one life compared to a nation or group of people is a small amount.

Its like you aren't even addressing my arg. I know, I ADDRESSED that.

We can just make sure that he is no longer a threat to the nation,

Killing him does that.

Ugh.

Killing him had costs. That I explained. Before this very post. The block of text you ignored.

and use him to ensure that future genocide perpetrators are kept at bay.

By deterrence i.e. death penalty? That sounds like an argument for the death penalty when I read it.

Wut.
Cermank
Posts: 3,773
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4/28/2014 12:36:39 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/25/2014 1:38:39 AM, wrichcirw wrote:

That wasn't the response to it at all. The response was that the cost of when the genocide point has been reached, the cost is not only the lives that have been lost- but the socio cultural conditions that made him that way. Thus its our duty to discover/ detect a problem and try to address it through the variety of tools we have at our disposal (/medical, psychological, mass media, educational, whatever). THAT is something that *must* be addressed in order to ensure that the previous socio economic conditions do not lead to another genocide victim being born, because killing the first one does not address the root cause of the problem.

One thing I really did not understand about your reasoning was that you equated discovering causes to "restorative punishment". That's not really what rehabilitation is about...rehabilitation is the attempt to convince the perpetrator that it's in their best interests to not commit such crimes again.

Once you find out the causes, what is stopping you from killing this person, especially if rehabilitation is impossible?

Finding the cause really has no utility if we can't find a way to resolve the problem, using the findings we found. That's one of the things that usually bothers me about the Pacifism Gene sharp argument- he basically says that all we can do to avoid wars is prevention. Once a war has already started, we don't have much tools to counter is peacefully (thus implicitly accepting that wars are justifiable once they've started).

The parallel here is the same, once you find the cause (which isn't the easiest of the thing), you have an afflicted person right with you to kind of experiment on with possible cures. [Not using the correct terminology, but I hope the point gets across.] So to answer your question, once we find teh cause, we develop a solution- resurrect that person and be on our path to a better more evolved society where there are no future problems of the same kind.

I understand that the resolution almost seems a jerk-reaction-reject, but the reason I debated it was to discover my limits in the DP case. Perhaps I should have lead with my closing argument, but I was learning through it too. I mean, basically you are saying that if there is a genocide perpetrator, he *must* be killed, without ever supporting your assertion. We can just make sure that he is no longer a threat to the nation, and use him to ensure that future genocide perpetrators are kept at bay.

I just want to state that I do very much agree with most of your reasoning, and that prioritizing discovering causes is very much warranted if possible.

However, if discovering the cause is not possible and you're threatened with an extinction event, first you neutralize the threat however you can, even if that means killing a person to do it.

I guess I don't understand why it would not be possible.

And why holding him in a secure prison wont be a better way to achieve that, because the bigger the crime, the bigger is our need to find the cause and come up with a solution. I don't really have moral reservations with killing him, I just don't understand why we'd need to when there are clearly better pragmatic solutions to the problem in the long run.
Cermank
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4/28/2014 12:44:53 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/25/2014 1:40:47 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 4/25/2014 1:38:39 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 4/24/2014 1:00:00 AM, Cermank wrote:
At 4/23/2014 10:54:03 PM, TheOncomingStorm wrote:

Once you find out the causes, what is stopping you from killing this person, especially if rehabilitation is impossible?

Just to elaborate on this point, this just becomes a cost-benefit analysis, IMHO, in determining the risk that someone that is impossible to rehabilitate may one day escape and cause havoc again.

Given the extreme nature of the resolution, all I would need to do is to make that risk as high as possible and make the chance for rehabilitation as low as possible. That's exactly what I did...not sure how clear that message was in the debate.

Ah. Yeah, the debate's done. But basically I think there were unnecessary restrictions on the RP case. If we are comparing two systems, I believe we need to take the cetris paribus thing as a pre-condition, and I wasn't sure if I did enough to point that out.

But the last round was a little rushed, so no sweat. I think I do know where I stand on DP a lot better now, so it was a success fo me.
wrichcirw
Posts: 11,196
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4/30/2014 6:50:16 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 4/28/2014 12:36:39 PM, Cermank wrote:
At 4/25/2014 1:38:39 AM, wrichcirw wrote:

That wasn't the response to it at all. The response was that the cost of when the genocide point has been reached, the cost is not only the lives that have been lost- but the socio cultural conditions that made him that way. Thus its our duty to discover/ detect a problem and try to address it through the variety of tools we have at our disposal (/medical, psychological, mass media, educational, whatever). THAT is something that *must* be addressed in order to ensure that the previous socio economic conditions do not lead to another genocide victim being born, because killing the first one does not address the root cause of the problem.

One thing I really did not understand about your reasoning was that you equated discovering causes to "restorative punishment". That's not really what rehabilitation is about...rehabilitation is the attempt to convince the perpetrator that it's in their best interests to not commit such crimes again.

Once you find out the causes, what is stopping you from killing this person, especially if rehabilitation is impossible?

Finding the cause really has no utility if we can't find a way to resolve the problem, using the findings we found. That's one of the things that usually bothers me about the Pacifism Gene sharp argument- he basically says that all we can do to avoid wars is prevention. Once a war has already started, we don't have much tools to counter is peacefully (thus implicitly accepting that wars are justifiable once they've started).

I'm not familiar with this theory, but from how you described it, I don't think it implies justifiability at all...it would be like justifying fire, which I don't think makes a lot of sense.

Right before I read "all we can do to avoid wars is prevention", I was about to describe contagious, catastrophic, and epidemic diseases...we don't deal with such diseases through treatment...we deal with such diseases through vaccination. I think that's what this "Gene Sharp theory" would entail as well.

Regardless, "resolving" the problem would not only entail "curing" an individual, but preventing other individuals from sharing the same fate. IMHO that's by far the most important aspect of finding the "cause" of a matter, even if the subject matter him/herself is a "lost cause".

The parallel here is the same, once you find the cause (which isn't the easiest of the thing), you have an afflicted person right with you to kind of experiment on with possible cures. [Not using the correct terminology, but I hope the point gets across.] So to answer your question, once we find teh cause, we develop a solution- resurrect that person and be on our path to a better more evolved society where there are no future problems of the same kind.

"An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure," and sometimes, the cure is so beguiling as to elude even our best efforts - http://en.wikipedia.org..., http://healthvermont.gov...

I understand that the resolution almost seems a jerk-reaction-reject, but the reason I debated it was to discover my limits in the DP case. Perhaps I should have lead with my closing argument, but I was learning through it too. I mean, basically you are saying that if there is a genocide perpetrator, he *must* be killed, without ever supporting your assertion. We can just make sure that he is no longer a threat to the nation, and use him to ensure that future genocide perpetrators are kept at bay.

I just want to state that I do very much agree with most of your reasoning, and that prioritizing discovering causes is very much warranted if possible.

However, if discovering the cause is not possible and you're threatened with an extinction event, first you neutralize the threat however you can, even if that means killing a person to do it.

I guess I don't understand why it would not be possible.

And why holding him in a secure prison wont be a better way to achieve that, because the bigger the crime, the bigger is our need to find the cause and come up with a solution. I don't really have moral reservations with killing him, I just don't understand why we'd need to when there are clearly better pragmatic solutions to the problem in the long run.

You hit upon the key word...pragmatism. What if it was far more pragmatic to stop a forest fire at any cost before it burned your village, even if it meant diverting resources that would be used to discover the cause of this forest fire to efforts to control it? If you can't control the forest fire, your village will burn to the ground, and there will be no future efforts to discover the root causes of it anyway. So, in the interests of pragmatism, you do whatever it takes, even if it means praying to rain gods (because such prayers would focus the will of the villagers upon the urgency of the situation, yet another aspect of pragmatism, for example) to fight the fire.

Once that fire dies down, no matter how it dies down, then and only then could you have enough time to discover the cause.

Or, another way to look at it...let's say that there was indeed a raging fire, but you knew that controlled burns would prevent the spread. Well, there are some scattered houses between your city and the raging fire...you implement controlled burns of this area thereby sacrificing the lives of the people in these scattered houses to save the city (let's say there was no time to evacuate these people for whatever reason). You know this will work, because you know how fire works. Once the fire is no longer a threat to the city, you buy yourself time to explore how and why that fire started in the first place.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
Smithereens
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4/30/2014 8:02:46 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
That motion is so severe I don't even know how you fulfill that BoP in an epistemological sense. To say that the Death penalty is never justified is to claim knowledge that the death penalty cannot be justified. It is not possible to have this knowledge thus the claim can not be made.
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