New York State and the death penalty

Started by Rick4404, July 25, 2011, 12:14:08 AM

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July 25, 2011, 12:14:08 AM Last Edit: July 25, 2011, 12:34:44 AM by Rick4404
As far as New York and the death penalty goes, the state's most current version of a death penalty statute was invalidated by the state's highest court in a 2004 ruling. New York's Legislature since then has made several attempts at passing a bill to reinstate the death penalty in New York State, all to no avail.

The version of New York's death penalty law which was invalidated was passed by both the State Assembly and the State Senate in 1995 and signed into law by now-former Republican Gov. George Pataki. While several persons were sentenced to death under the revised statute, no executions took place; and that law was invalidated in 2004.  The sentences of those on death row were eventually commuted to life in prison.

New York State had a death penalty law, which was struck down in 1972 in the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Furman v. Georgia. Several bills were passed since then to reinstate the death penalty in New York, and all were vetoed by Democratic governors. Hugh Carey and Mario Cuomo vetoed every death peanlty bill that reached their desks during their terms in office as governor.

The last execution to take place in New York State in the infamous electric chair at Sing Sing Prison was Eddie Lee Mays, who was executed in 1963. His executioner later committed suicide, according to the Death Penalty Information Center.


July 25, 2011, 01:03:55 AM Last Edit: July 25, 2011, 01:14:00 AM by 14dp
According to the

And support for capital punishment continues to dwindle.  This is reflected in the decreasing number of death sentences handed down by juries (111 last year, down from a high of 328 in 1994), and the reduced support for the death penalty in public opinion polls (a May 2006 Gallup poll revealed that Americans are evenly split between preferring the death penalty (47%) or life without parole (48%)).

Once a third-rail issue in most states, reforming or even repealing the death penalty is now mainstream politics.  Skepticism about capital punishment is making inroads everywhere, even in the South, where the vast majority of executions take place.  Texas juries are doing what juries are doing nationwide, handing down fewer and fewer death sentences (there were 11 in 2008, as compared to 48 back in 1999). And North Carolina, which has carried out 43 executions since reinstatement, had only one death sentence last year.

For anyone from Europe or Australia to hope to restore the death penalty there is as realistic as that one day Mississippi will flow from New Orleans to Dubuque. 


Hmm. You think after the 9/11 fiasco and all the gangs, drug and high crime rates, people would have smartened up on the death penalty. I guess New York is full of murder loving liberals.
My reason for supporting the death penalty? A murderer has less of a right to live than his victim and already presents a danger while incarcerated for life. They have nothing to lose when the most they can get is Life in prison without parole.


I have found this gem.

Mayor Ed Koch Will Argue To The Death (Penalty)

Former Mayor Ed Koch's commentary out today is a matter of life and death -- in particular, a full-throated defense of maintaining a legal death penalty, which neighboring Connecticut has just abolished.

I'm sure Koch's argument wouldn't fare well in more liberal circles, but I'm curious to see what, if anything, people think of it. Here are some excerpts:

"I do not believe there is a single case in the U.S. where academics and law enforcement authorities agree that an innocent person has been put to death. Yes, innocent people have been convicted at trial, but as a result of appeals, they have been exonerated before the sentence was carried out.  Even if opponents were to cite such a case, I would still support having the penalty available as an option in particularly heinous murders. The reason being that many more innocent lives would be saved because of the deterrence factor.

"Death penalty opponents always claim racism in the meting out of the penalty, conveying that blacks and Hispanics are victims of that racism. What they rarely state is that while proportionate to the population whites commit fewer murders than blacks and Hispanics, they receive the death penalty in greater numbers. The cry of racism by the opponents really stems from the contention that the murderers of minority victims are given prison sentences to a greater degree than death sentences, whereas the murderers of white victims are more likely to be given death sentences.

"Those opponents don't urge that more minority murderers of minorities be given the death penalty in larger numbers upon conviction, but rather that no one suffer that penalty."

News story here:
My reason for supporting the death penalty? A murderer has less of a right to live than his victim and already presents a danger while incarcerated for life. They have nothing to lose when the most they can get is Life in prison without parole.

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