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21 Years for 91 Murders?


Long-time blogger and friend Damian Penny asks a few difficult questions of the Breivik case.

We’re all familiar with the argument against mandatory minimum sentences.  The Breivik case makes a good case against mandatory maximum sentences.

Hardly.  “Life” in a jail with pubic-paid food, clothing, meds, library, “retirement” – that is “punishment,” is it? Would a REALLY stiff 99 years be “correctional?”

Jail time… even “life” on the installment plan… will [obviously] not disuade others from taking innocent lives. By rewarding such slaughter are we not indeed encouraging even more of the same?  So who will be next?  Won’t be Breivik, guaranteed.  So… who will it be next time?

Does the Breivik case not rather make an argument for capital punishment, if indeed not for gruesome public death by torture?

There is a cruel paradox to the universe, a Law that can not be avoided: To protect and value innocent life one must first be willing to take life or to give-up one’s own to defend it.  This “compassion for the perp” nonsense – by removing ultimate consequences, by denying the murderer final responsibility –  we have made life truly cheap.

[Updated 22:55 – Ed.]

2 Comments leave one →
  1. 2011/07/29 12:36


    It’s fashionable to concern ourselves with the perpetrator, but justice itself must be satisfied. The shedding of blood, the taking of those things that can never be returned – these crimes demand recompense. Rehabilitation and compassion have no claim against this higher demand.

    Blood will be answered with blood. It is up to societies to decide whether they will answer with the blood of the perpetrator, or with the blood of future innocents.

    • 2011/07/29 14:14

      Nice thought for a Friday, yeh?

      There’s an old Talmudic principle held today only by the Orthodox: That Justice precedes Peace. One can not and must not reverse the order.

      We give our daughter’s a blessing each week: That they “should grow to be strong and grow to be kind.” Similar precedence, similar principle.

      Peace and kindness have their place; they are vital. But to supplant Justice and strength with them is folly. It become the quickest road to tyranny. Lefties *never* understand this; for them it’s the great mental stumbling block.

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