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Victim to Panel: No to Death Penalty, No to Revenge

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Published on Feb 28, 2008

More information at: http://www.californiacrimevictims.org.
The California Commission on the Fair Administration held its first of three public hearings on California's broken death penalty on January 10, 2008. Representatives from California Crime Victims for Alternatives to the Death Penalty spoke at the hearing, including former prosecutor Aundre Herron. In this video, Herron describes her initial reactions to her brother's brutal murder, as well as why the death penalty does not help victims. To learn more about Aundre's story, and the stories of other victim survivors, visit: www.californiacrimevictims.org

Comments • 41

turner pike
I don't think the death penalty should be a thing I think serial killers should get life. I mean like here's the thing there is huge evidence of reincarnation and really if someone was a serial killer in a past life who's not to say they will kill in another life. All your doing when you give someone the death penalty is just letting them be free and they could end up being even worse in another life. I think that true revenge is trapping them not freeing them.
Sonia Pilla
There is always good debates regarding the death penalty. Lets be smart about this.... Why do people kill? There are so many answers... 1. PERSONAL REVENGE There are many people in every community who have difficulties controlling their anger. If someone hurts them, rather than forgiving or reporting the matter to the authorities, they take the law into their own hands and kill their enemy. As a psychotherapist I am fascinated by the number of murders that happen within families; people kill those they had loved at one time. Their sense of betrayal transforms their love into hate, and lovers become enemies. Spouses who once vowed eternal love can kill each other because of jealousy. It is sad to see domestic and family violence killing so many people every year, especially children and women. 2. SERIAL KILLERS While some people kill people that they know intimately, there are others who kill strangers. We call them serial killers and mass murderers. I interviewed Javed Iqbal Mughal who had confessed to killing one hundred children in Pakistan, and reviewing the research on serial killers, I was shocked to discover that the United States had the highest numbers of serial killings in the world. These serial killers, who were usually physically, emotionally and sexually abused as children, became revengeful against a particular group, be they blacks or women, gays or Hispanics, whom they killed indiscriminately until they were caught by police. Many such serial killers have psychopathic and sociopathic personalities. 3. SOCIAL VIOLENCE OF GANGS As more and more people move from villages to cities and adopt an urban lifestyle, they face the pains of migration, social alienation and unemployment and some of them become involved in violent gangs to sell drugs to make quick money. Unfortunately, once they enter the drug and gang culture it is difficult for them to leave. It is fascinating how these gangs provide a sense of identity and belonging to young men and women who feel lost, confused and isolated in big cities. When there are violent confrontations between gangs, we see many murders. In some cases the local police themselves become involved in these violent crimes. 4. MENTAL ILLNESS While the majority of murders are committed by psychopaths who do not suffer from mental illness, there are some murders committed by people who suffer from schizophrenia, manic depressive illness and paranoid psychosis. When these emotionally disturbed people feel threatened and attacked, they may think they need to kill before they are killed. Such people, rather than going to prison, are sent to hospitals for psychiatric treatment. 5. POLITICAL / NATIONAL VIOLENCE As the concept of nationalism became popular in the West, states created national armies. Over the centuries, soldiers in the uniform of one country killed only the soldiers of the enemy army. As guerrilla war became popular, both sides have been killing innocent men, women and children. Some call it using human shields while others call it collateral damage. Innocent citizens are being killed with no twinge of conscience on either side. Human beings can be executed by their own governments, under capital punishment laws ordered by the courts. These are murders committed by legalized state violence. 6. VIOLENCE OF RELIGIOUS FUNDAMENTALISTS Over the centuries believers have killed each other in the name of God. In the last few decades there have been a large number of killings between Sunnis and Shiites, Catholics and Protestants, Hindus and Muslims, and Muslims and Jews in different parts of the world. Ironically these violent murders were committed in the name of a merciful God. Some of those killings are done to create theocratic states. Many such murders are ordered by religious leaders who have charismatic and cultish personalities. 7. INTERNATIONAL VIOLENCE In the recent past, Western governments have been sending their armies to other countries and invading sovereign states in order to topple their governments; they have killed innocent civilians and then rationalized their murders in the name of democracy, human rights and freedom. We are all aware that they are economic wars aimed at establishing the aggressor’s military presence all over the world, selling weapons and ensuring access to the conquered countries’ resources. 
fr3ds4t
Faith in USA = almost restored
Aleena B
@Sereiphiel If you're smart, why is your grammar wrong? That's a stupid thing to do. But I like your message though
aqinthe
@jasonrtaylor For many prisioners being in prision isn't a punishment. They watch TV, play cards get and write letter or fan mail. Some people do not need to exist after the crimes they have commited..
Pastore
scheiß englisch hausaufgaben :P
hoodielin
American idiots...its somethings in that!! A society that goes to church every Sunday...And then they sen d people to death. Not so much better than middle east. At least you dont execute in the name of religion. Its barbaric and very medieval. Look at Europe (exept from Belarus). We dont execute anymore. And still we have less crimes Something strange in that isn´t it? Is it about revenge?? eye for an eye mentality??If there is a Jesus Christ he bends his head in shame for you!
Tino Trivino
What do you expect from a Nation like USA, your whole culture is revenge!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! nothing more!!!!!!!!
Grandma Adelaide
my son was murdered in 2001. when i c words like yours giraffes my heart weeps. When does the killing stop? When does murder in the hearts of americans stop?
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