I am a Democrat…

tried and true. I have always supported the Democratic Party since the time I could first vote, going back to the Reagan era. I have never wavered. Since that time, however, I have found that I am getting a bit more conservative. I used to denote myself as a “liberal”. But now, I don’t know. As I am getting older, I don’t believe in the “live and let live” theory so much any more. What am I floundering on all of a sudden?

The death penalty.

I used to be dead set against it…even in the most heinous of cases. After all, taking one life for taking another somehow doesn’t even the score. I truly believed that, once upon a time, most criminals could be rehabilitated. I believed that more money should have went toward the rehabilitation of these criminals and possibly turn them into productive members of society.

Yet now, I have to admit…my feelings have changed.

I find myself adamently in favor of the death penalty. Not sure where that puts me as a liberal any longer. I suppose the label no longer fits. At least, not as snugly as it used to. I watch all these cases about murder and rape and I find myself wanting these animals put to death. Increasingly, I am adhering to the principles of an eye for an eye. For example, you rape? You get raped. You sodomize? You get sodomized. And, of course, if you commit murder…you die. Plain and simple.

Naturally, the nurse in me wants at very least 99% DNA proof of this before you are mandated to die. There has to be guilt beyond a shadow of a doubt, not reasonable doubt. That’s simply not enough for me.

I have to admit that I feel badly for feeling this way. Maybe it is ever since becoming a grandmother. I don’t want my grandchild brought up in a society full of animals who, with one good defense lawyer, will be released back onto the streets.

A long time ago, I believed that Roman Polanski should be left alone from his crime. The victim had since forgiven him for his transgression some 40 years earlier and there was a monetary settlement reached. Let’s leave it alone. However, now I feel that he has been parading around all through Europe without a care in the world. Frankly, the man is a fugitive and needs to be treated as such. I have watched his Hollywood cohorts hail him as a hero of the film industry. While that may be true, it is also true that he plied a 13 year old girl full of alcohol and quaaludes. He fled the country before ever serving his sentence. I can’t help but wonder if it were Joe Schmoe from Buttfuck, Idaho, would we be satisfied with time served?

As I age, I no longer feel this is justice.

What scares me so much is that I feel like I am losing grip of my liberal self. I want people to be able to live freely with all their rights afforded to them, but at the same time, I think we are giving too much leeway to hardened criminals. It strikes me as odd that people commit DUI manslaughter and receive 3 years in prison.

What really has me a little bitter are the people in my intensive outpatient therapy group. Some of them have committed multiple DUI’s and are relegated to 12 weeks of outpatient therapy. 12 weeks for the potential of having killed themselves or more importantly, someone else. Something just doesn’t feel right about that. I can’t help being a little angry at those members of the group. You can tell which ones are truly remorseful and which ones are just rolling with the punches and jumping through the proverbial legal hoops. It’s frustrating. I want to shake each one of them and tell them that if they are to ever hurt my daughter, son or grandchild, that I will personally kill them myself.

So, I am questioning my commitment toward liberalism now more than ever. And quite frankly, it really has me bothered.

14 thoughts on “I am a Democrat…

  1. Jessie

    I’m not really going to start a shit storm but I’m against the death penalty because by killing people who rape, kill and commit arson, we aren’t learning anything. They should be subjected to be human lab rats for the rest of their lives, without crossing the cruel and unusual line, so we can learn WHY a man would set 36 fires so we can learn the signs and then prevent more people like him from popping up, or we would at least know how to deal with them.

    I’m no expert, I’m just saying.

    My nephew was one of the 5 firefighters killed in the Esperanza fire in California, and they put the arsonist to death. I thought maybe it would be better to study him and find out what caused him to do what he did.

  2. CP

    I partially agree with you. Studies of these individual would be a great thing for research. However, I think, once we have gleaned all the information we possibly could from them, that they should be put to a swift and timely death.

    In the case of your nephew, that would be death by blowtorch.

    I am so sorry for your loss, Jess.

  3. Poppy

    What’s liberal about hand picking who is prosecuted for their crimes? That sounds very conservative and scary to me. I am completely disgusted that Roman Polanski’s crime is being treated as anything but. He RAPED a girl. Hi, RAPED. Why don’t all the people supporting him understand that just because he’s sorry and a genius in his field doesn’t mean he doesn’t get prosecuted?

    I’m still not for death penalty. That’s too “eye for an eye” for my taste. That blurs the line of politics, morals, and religion for me. I have tried to put myself in the place of what ifs, but I still don’t yet feel like death penalty is a good idea. No one has ever been able to sway me on that.

  4. 20th Century Woman

    I have always been against the death penalty, not because I feel sorry for murderers, but because I do not want to be part of a society that kills. This is because of what it does to me, not what it does to the killer.

    I addition, no system invented by humans is perfect and it is certain that at some point an innocent person will be put to death. In fact that is what we now know happened in Texas.

    Life without parole is effective at keeping killers off the street, and if exonerating evidence is found part of the wrong can be righted. It also costs the taxpayers less.

  5. CP

    Poppy – The Roman Polanski case makes me think of the late Michael Jackson’s plight. MJ was NEVER convicted of a crime, but in the court of public opinion, was always made a pariah due to child molestation allegations. He had very few people defending him. Even most of outspoken Hollywood kept their mouths shut. However, Polanski was convicted of the crime. He is a convicted child molester. Like Michael, he came to a financial settlement with the victim…but one case was speculation while the other was steeped in fact. Roman Polanski did endanger the welfare of a child. He did rape and sodomize her. He did ply her with drugs and alcohol. Then, he took off, like a coward and hid as a fugitive for all these decades. He needs to pay for his crime. I think it is completely hypocritical that we treated the MJ case one way and the Polanski case in another. The man needs to go to prison.

    20th – I completely understand where you are coming from. At one time, I agreed with you. I didn’t want to be part of a society that encouraged killing in any form. But, as I watch some of these heinous crimes against children, like the Polly Klaas case or even the Elizabeth Smart case, where children are being ripped from their beds in the middle of the night to be raped and murdered, I have to question it. I think when I became a grandmother, it hardened me a bit. I do agree with Poppy that it blurs the lines between politics, religion and morality. This is what fires my confusion at my sudden conservative feelings. Innocent people spend decades in jail sometimes. We are a flawed system although, most of the time, we get it right.

    I think Jessie had a good point, about studying the nature of these beasts. At least then we can glean information from them and perhaps prevent future crimes.

    Crimes against children just make me boil over.


  6. John B

    CP: I tried to cut Roman Polanski some slack. After all he was the surviving victim of the one man in America who deserved death more than most. Charles Manson. If it weren’t California, he’d be dead already. In Utah they use a firing squad of five. One of the shot’s is a blank so any of the firing squad members can say that maybe they didn’t fire a killing shot. I’d be more than happy to fire five shots into mr Manson just to make sure he was dead, and I’d sleep sweet for the rest of my life.

    I had to listen to some French Journalist rant that we were too harsh. If we had even suggested that locking up Frank Abagnale Jr. in a shithole prison for six months was too harsh, we’d be subjected to a screaming bitchfest about how we had no right to meddle in French Jurisprudence. Calling in and yelling “Fuck You for a Frog Hypocrite”, didn’t seem to be a good idea.

    I still wish I had done it….

  7. m

    When did the only options become being a liberal or being a conservative?

    As much as the parties want it all to be black and white, it’s not. Never was. Never will be.

    Be a moderate (left leaning, but moderate none the less).

  8. CP

    John B – I had the same thought process with regard to Polanski. He did survive one of the most heinous crimes ever committed in the United States. Nevertheless, he committed a pretty heinous crime himself. I try not to let things get personal, but all I could think about is…if that had been MY 13 year old daughter, if that had been one of my children who was raped by an adult, I would seek justice, despite the fact that this man was a victim in his own right. Certainly, it could be said that what he did was as a result of enormous trauma perpetrated on him based on the loss of his unborn son and his wife. However, that would be for his defense attorney to argue, not me. He has to face up for his crimes, regardless of what was done in his past. I do agree with you though…the fact that Charles Manson is still “free” is a thorn in my side. When Susan Atkins died last week, she died a painful death. I couldn’t muster up the empathy to feel bad for her, despite my usually empathetic attitude toward those who are dying of cancer. She was a menace to society and I do not subscribe to the theory of “finding God” should free you of your crimes. Your sins, perhaps, but not your crimes.

    M – You are right. This really isn’t a black or white issue, but you know how it is among the party lines. There really is no room for shades of gray. If you don’t feel staunchly one way or the other, you are accused of being “wishy washy”. I like the term “moderate”. It fits me like a glove. Thank you.


  9. Angelique

    I guess I would have to say I’m an eye for an eye kinda girl. If you kill another human being you forfeit your right to your life. You rape or sodomize someone, your dick comes off and if you happen to die bleeding to death, well, I’m not going to lose any sleep since you have irrevocably altered your victim’s life and for all intents and purposes killed their’s as well. I also feel that if we were a MUCH stricter country as far as punishment, there would be a lot less of these things happening.
    I would be for life in prison, if prison wasn’t such a cushy place. Three meals, a place to sleep, roof over your head, a library, cable TV, etc, etc. I’d be ok with every prisoner in solitary confinement where your best friend is Larry the cockroach, but that’s not how it is.
    And like you CP, crimes against children make my blood boil!!!

  10. BaxtersMum

    No one seem interested in remembering that after the 13 year old, he moved on to a 15 year old Nastassja Kinski. The man is a sexual predator. The End.

    And the women in hollywood who defend him are absolutely derranged. As for the men – are we really surprised Woody Allen is one of the supporters?

    I say castrate the MF and let him do his “art.” Christ. Hitler was a genius too, but you don’t see anyone defending his crap.

  11. Sar

    I don’t know how I feel about the death penalty. I really don’t. I don’t believe sentencing someone to death for killing someone, because it’s kind of a catch 22. I mean, like…you don’t hit your kids when they are being violent, meeting violence with violence just creates more violence. But at the same time, creatures like that should NEVER be allowed back into society. I don’t care if they are “rehabilitated”. In my eyes, they are still monsters.

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