By Dale Jacquette
One within the sequence New Dialogues in Philosophy, edited by way of the writer himself, Dale Jacquette offers a fictional discussion over a three-day interval at the moral complexities of capital punishment. Jacquette strikes his readers from outlining simple concerns in concerns of existence and loss of life, to questions of justice and compassion, with a concluding discussion at the conditional and unconditional correct to lifestyles. Jacquette's characters speak it seems that and thoughtfully concerning the dying penalty, and readers are left to figure out for themselves how most sensible to contemplate the morality of placing humans to demise.
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Additional resources for Dialogues on the Ethics of Capital Punishment (New Dialogues in Philosophy)
I still don’t think so. P: Well, why on earth not? C: Because, when we execute a criminal, we’re playing God. P: Ah, there it is. I knew we’d reach this point sooner or later. What do you mean by “playing God”? C: Taking the life of someone is playing God. Only God can decide who lives and who dies. 40 Chapter 2 P: But you don’t even believe in God. You told me last semester that you’re an agnostic most of the time and an outright atheist when you’re being completely honest with yourself. C: What I mean by “playing God” is just a phrase.
P: Above all else, I think it’s true to say also that we are both open-minded about whether capital punishment is ultimately morally justified. I mean by this that while you now have what you consider to be good reasons to oppose the death penalty, and I have what I consider to be good reasons for supporting the death penalty in at least some extreme cases, we are not trying to be dogmatic or inflexible in our opinions. If you posed a truly convincing argument against capital punishment, then I would follow you in your objections.
C: Who did it? P: A forty-six-year-old convicted sex offender, named John Evander Couey, confessed and was convicted of the crime. Where is God or the gods when that kind of thing happens? Who is supposed to do what we expect of real meaningful justice when that kind of crime is committed? C: I’m not saying that the monster who committed that crime shouldn’t be punished. I’m saying that killing the killer won’t bring the dead girl back and that we cheapen our own sense of right and wrong when we kill, even if we do it as painlessly as possible with lethal injection or whatever other method is devised.