Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Why Shouldn't a Child Rapist get the Death Penalty?

In a close decision the Supreme Court thinks that the death penalty is cruel and unusual punishment for child rapist.

From NYT

'Justice Alito wrote a dissent lamenting that the majority had ruled out executing someone for raping a child “no matter how young the child, no matter how many times the child is raped, no matter how many children the perpetrator rapes, no matter how sadistic the crime, no matter how much physical or psychological trauma is inflicted, and no matter how heinous the perpetrator’s prior criminal record may be.” '

Children are usually considered a special part of the population since they do not possess legal rights. This was the reason used to enact the law in Louisiana.

'Responding to a question from Justice Ginsburg, Ms. Clark said the Louisiana child-rape law could apply regardless of the sex of the criminal or that of the victim.

And in support of her argument that crimes against children have long been viewed with special revulsion, and as deserving of special punishment, Ms. Clark pointed out that the Supreme Court ruled in 1990 that states can make it a crime to possess child pornography even in one’s home.

That ruling, in Osborne v. Ohio, carved out an exception to a 1969 Supreme Court ruling that the Constitution protects the possession of obscene material in the privacy of one’s residence. Justice Byron R. White wrote for the 6-to-3 majority in the Osborne case, reasoning that Ohio was justified in trying to “destroy a market for the exploitative use of children.” '

I can't believe Justice Kennedy joined the majority and used to excuse of cruel and unusual punishment!

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