Wednesday, November 08, 2017

Carol Steiker & Jordan Steiker: Anti Death Penalty Nonsense


REBUTTAL:  Opinion  Op-Ed "The more we confront the death penalty, the less we like it", Carol Steiker and Jordan Steiker, Los Angeles Times, 11/23/16

From: Dudley Sharp

The Steikers' Common Anti Death Penalty Nonsense

Without nonsense, the anti death penalty folks would have very little to say.

The Nebraska legislature abolished the death penalty, based, solely, upon a common deception campaign, easily exposed by fact checking, which the media did not reveal - also quite common.

The popular vote of Nebraskans negated the death penalty repeal, based upon justice - a concept the Steikers never considered.

The superior Steikers labeled those citizens "often-impulsive voters".

Possibly, the Steikers are "often impulsively superior".

The Steikers identify the "six state legislatures (that) have jettisoned the death penalty — New Jersey, New Mexico, Illinois, Connecticut, Maryland, and Nebraska — " while failing to mention that would have been impossible without 5 of the 6 states having Democratic anti death penalty Governors and anti death penalty, majority Democratic legislatures, all of whom voted contrary to the wishes of their citizens and all of whom used common, false anti death penalty arguments, easily exposed by fact checking, which the media did not reveal - also quite common.

Yes, "New York and Delaware — have declined to revive the death penalty after their highest courts struck it down.", but that is because, in New York,  the Republican majority Senate has passed new death penalty legislation, twice, with the Democrat controlled Assembly, twice, not allowing it to proceed.

Democrats want to make sure that all murderers live.

As The Delaware  Supreme Court found their death penalty statute unconstitutional, in August, 2016, one might instruct the  Steikers: "There has been no opportunity for Delaware to reinstate the death penalty, yet.", as, of course, the Steikers well know.

This is a beauty: The Steikers write: "When voters grapple with the death penalty in their backyards, they also turn against it.  In recent contests in major death penalty states — Texas, Alabama, Louisiana and Florida — voters in local elections have ousted prosecutors who championed the death penalty and sought it indiscriminately."

All those recently elected prosecutors, with an Alabama exception, support the death penalty. In addition, there are 31 total states, with hundreds of prosecutors that support the death penalty, wherein most of those prosecutors are still in power.

There is zero evidence that prosecutors are seeking the death penalty "indiscriminately". The evidence is, overwhelmingly, to the contrary, as the Steikers are aware.

This is hysterical: The Steikers state: "Consider Angela Corey’s fate.  As district attorney in Jacksonville, Fla., she led her county to produce more death sentences per capita than any other locality in the United States.  Her constituents responded by voting overwhelmingly to oust "the cruelest prosecutor in the country," as the Nation magazine once called her."

Corey was vanquished by fellow Republican Melissa Nelson, who campaigned that Corey was too soft on crime, the opposite of what the Steikers' would have you believe. Nelson supports the death penalty.

The three defining criminal cases, contributing to Corey's ouster, were that of George Zimmerman, Marissa Alexander,  and 12-year-old Cristian Fernandez, none of which were death penalty cases.

The Steikers think the death penalty has fallen out of favor, based upon "From a high of more than 300 yearly in the mid-1990s, death sentences have fallen more than 80% to fewer than 50 last year."

Are the Steikers unaware that capital murders have dropped dramatically since 1991, that murder rates are at 50 year lows, that robbery/murder, the most common death penalty eligible crime may have dropped by 80%, that 8 fewer states have the death penalty and that the categories of cases eligible for the death penalty have been reduced, which are all responsible for that 80% drop? Of course not.

The Steikers state: 'The National Research Council (NRC) of the National Academy of Sciences concluded in 2012 that there is no reliable evidence that the death penalty  helps to deter murder."

Total nonsense.

No study has ever found that the death penalty, or any other criminal sanction, deters none. Never.

The NRC only published the paper, and had nothing to do with how, massively, problematic the paper was.

The head of the study was Prof. Nagin, whose academic chair is funded by a well known anti death penalty group. The study was, also, funded, by two additional, also, well known, anti death penalty groups.

Conflicts of interest, very seldom, are this blatant. It is, simply astounding, that the NRC allows such nonsense to be published under the NRC banner, which is a citizen funded, government program.

Are the Steikers unaware?

So tiresome, the Steikers continue: "Indeed, the states that are most committed to retaining the death penalty, such as China, Iran, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, are those least committed to justice in the form of fundamental human rights."

The only relevant country is the United States, which retains the death penalty for justice, as the Steikers well know. And let's not forget our allies in Japan, Singapore and South Korean, where the death penalty is supported and used.

Some of the most foul countries in the world do not have the death penalty. If the US repealed the death penalty, would the Steikers compare the US to them? Guess. It is just the standard, idiotic anti death penalty illogic that the Steikers are pushing.

The Steikers stagger on: ' . . . those who directly encounter the death penalty fear the risk of executing the innocent and imposing the death penalty not on the “worst of the worst” but on the basis of race and other illegitimate factors."

There is no proof of an innocent executed in the US, at least since the 1930's.

16,000 innocents have been murdered by those known murderers that we have allowed to murder, again - recidivist murderers, - just since 1973.

Where are the innocents at risk?

White murderers are twice as likely to be executed as are black murderers and white death row inmates are executed at a 41% higher rate than are black death row inmates.

Sadly, Carol and Jordon Streiker are teachers in US law schools.

Poor students.