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We have a legal system, and this is not something that happens all the time. We have capital punishment. America has capital punishment. Iran has capital punishment. Iran hangs people and leaves their bodies hanging on cranes. Iran put to death more than a thousand people last year. I don’t see EU reporting on it.
But once a culture develops sufficiently to become skeptical, the idea of censorship becomes less attractive. To suppress a book or a picture or a sculpture or a play or a film is a terrible act of aggression against the artist who created it. This is a miming of capital punishment; it destroys the life that has been emanated by a life.
The second item in the liberal creed, after self-righteousness, is unaccountability. Liberals have invented whole college majors–psychology, sociology, women’s studies–to prove that nothing is anybody’s fault. No one is fond of taking responsibility for his actions, but consider how much you’d have to hate free will to come up with a political platform that advocates killing unborn babies but not convicted murderers. A callous pragmatist might favor abortion and capital punishment. A devout Christian would sanction neither. But it takes years of therapy to arrive at the liberal view.
Capital punishment, that thing scares me, it really does. I was talking to my friend about the electric chair, and he starts freakin’ out. He’s like ‘the electric chair? That’s too good for these people. That’s too good for them’. Alright, how do we make the electric chair worse? How about this? They have to pedal a car battery to their own head. Is that ok? Is that enough, Mr. Hitler?
It’s a tract against capital punishment in the genre of Swift’s Modest Proposal. I was simply following a formula to its logical conclusion. Some people appear to have understood it. The publication of Naked Lunch in England practically coincided with their abolition of capital punishment. The book obviously had a certain effect.
When in Gregg v. Georgia the Supreme Court gave its seal of approval to capital punishment, this endorsement was premised on the promise that capital punishment would be administered with fairness and justice. Instead, the promise has become a cruel and empty mockery. If not remedied, the scandalous state of our present system of capital punishment will cast a pall of shame over our society for years to come. We cannot let it continue.
The ability of so many people to live comfortably with the idea of capital punishment is perhaps a clue to how so many Europeans were able to live with the idea of the Holocaust: Once you accept the notion that the state has the right to kill someone and the right to define what is a capital crime, aren’t you halfway there?
It is significant that, as innocent babies are killed, and capital punishment is withheld from their murderers, the same men who plead for the murderer’s life also demand the right to abortion. Usually, the same picketers that carry a sign one day, Abolish Capital Punishment, also carry Legalize Abortion another day. When this is called to their attention, their answer is, There is no contradiction involved. They are right: the thesis is condemn the innocent and free the guilty.