February 27, 2004
murderers forfeit their rights, OK to kill them
Hood is a junior music composition major from Fort
on the left consider it high piety to moan for the rights
of convicted criminals. Terrorists imprisoned in Cuba
and well-fed killers on death row have frequent petitions
offered on their behalf by the unsolicited self-styled
saintly-sensitive lefties. To such people, there is no
truer gospel than Thomas Jeffersons ringing rhetoric,
all men are created equal; misapplied to refuse
consideration of a personsactions.
I hail from the opposite camp, however, and insist that
someones actions matter; that they should accept
responsibility for their actions and be punished for their
Thankfully, this civic duty rarely finds itself taken
to the point of death, and when it is, we owe ourselves
the safety of an impartial inquiry. But when we are confronted
with cold-blooded murder, the equation is drastically
A murderer takes away all the civil rights of his victim,
and in the act he forfeits all of his own as well. We
presume innocence in trials precisely to delay this loss
of rights as long as possible. But when a cold-blooded
killer is found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, they
live in the cruelest mockery of their victims lost
life and rights.
Let us remember Thomas Jeffersons words again and
hold the rights of all men dear enough to execute those
who commit first-degree murder.
Let us not confuse the legal and moral safeguards that
protect the innocent and falsely accused for a trumped-up
protection of the guilty. While it is eternally true that
a person is born possessing certain inalienable
rights, it is just a true that a person may forfeit these
rights with horrific actions.
There is no irony in executing convicted killers (depriving
them of their rights, as someone against capital
punishment might say) precisely because such criminals
have already given up their rights! They forfeit them
with their crimes.
For those who abhor the death penalty for its effect on
the civil rights of criminals, I pose a question: Where
is your bleeding hearts outrage for the civil rights
of the murdered? Where is your outrage for the bereaved
who weep aside caskets and six-foot deep holes in the
ground while paying for the carefully preserved lives
of the creeps who kill?