Greetings Good Citizens,
I strongly oppose the Death Penalty, which is one of the cornerstones of Fascism, and will strive to abolish it if elected Governor of Oregon.
The State should never be given the power to murder an Individual, because it can easily frame someone whose political views, or economic power, goes against its interests. Hitler, Stalin, Mao, and Idi Amin could never have done what they did if Capital Punishment had been illegal under their terror regimes.
Moreover, with over 135 former deathrow inmates in America having been found innocent, largely due to DNA testing, it is clear that the Death Penalty is a Crime against Justice. Who knows how many innocent Americans have been framed and murdered by the State in America, or found guilty through bona fide errors? In Great Britain, they got tired of executing people who were later found innocent, and got rid of this barbarous practice. It’s time we in America came up to their level and Europe’s, Canada’s, Israel’s, and Australia’s, and get out of the orbit of sadistic regimes like China, Japan, Singapore, Iran, and Saudi Arabia.
That said, I believe those who have been convicted of such heinous crimes that they are given the Death Penalty in modern America, which usually requires special circumstances to be pronounced, should face a much more arduous imprisonment than other prisoners, but falling far short of cruel or unusual punishment. I’d suggest solitary for extremely violent criminals, and a 12-hour shift, 6 days a week, working some dull, useful job, like laundry or dishwashing, with any money they earned going to the surviving family of the victim. Libertarians believe that restitution should be made to the victim, not the State, although perhaps any earnings should be shared equally between the victim’s dependents and the taxpayer.
I believe such a system of more arduous punishment would be a far greater deterrent to murder than the Death Penalty.
Lastly, I’d have to agree with the great writer, Norman Mailer, who also vigorously opposed Capital Punishment, when he said that he thought it was, however, an appropriate punishment for War Crimes. I would not block the execution of anyone convicted of War Crimes against the People of Oregon or America, if their execution was to take place in Oregon. (For example, if we were invaded by Canada or North Korea.)
Capital Punishment is the key Libertarian issue, for it is the most extreme and violent instance of property theft by the State that exists. But it is a mere continuation of the crimes against property rights by the State that occur when the State takes from you that to which it has no Right. I will commute the sentences of anyone who comes up for execution during my term of office in Oregon, giving them Life in Solitary at hard labor as the alternative, and I will use my bully pulpit to press for the abolition of Capital Punishment in Oregon. — Paul Grad