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Kansas legislature

Kansas Legislature

Death penalty opponents say voters on their side

Poll suggests that most Kansans believe penalty is meted out unfairly

February 12, 2007

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— Most Kansans would support alternatives to the death penalty, according to a poll released Monday that was commissioned by a group seeking a ban on capital punishment.

"There is not an overwhelming support for the death penalty where there is an alternative available," said Ben Coats, with the Kansas Coalition Against the Death Penalty.

The poll of 500 frequent voters showed that nearly two-thirds of Kansans would prefer a sentence of life in prison without parole in which the inmate would work in prison to pay restitution to the families of their victims.

The poll also found that many Kansans thought capital punishment was handed out unfairly.

Fifty-seven percent of Kansans believe that some people are executed while others serve prison terms for the same type of offense.

The poll was conducted Jan. 20-21 by Jayhawk Consulting Service. The survey has a plus or minus margin of error of four percent.

The death penalty in Kansas was reinstated in 1935, repealed again in 1972 and finally reinstated in 1994.

Since the death penalty was last reinstated in Kansas, there have been 10 death sentences but no executions. One sentence was removed by the prosecutor's request and two have been vacated by the Kansas Supreme Court.

Comments

Baille 7 years, 10 months ago

Versus a cold-blooded killing machine? I suppose they would.

Baille 7 years, 10 months ago

"Who commissioned" is only releveant if the questions were skewed to return a particular result or if one is alleging a manipulation of the raw data.

It would seem that before one critiqued the poll one would need to see the questions and the data.

bd 7 years, 10 months ago

EYE FOR AN EYE!

I'm tired of all of this crap , if you kill someone ,you die, easy deterant!

Especially with all of these gangsta's roaming the streets at night!

Easy choices, live or die!

Baille 7 years, 10 months ago

"I'm tired of all of this crap , if you kill someone ,you die, easy deterant!"

Seems like if that were valid, we would have to keep rehiring executioners.

For example: State-killer kills bad guy. New state-killer kills that state-killer. New state-killer kills old new-state-killer and on and on and on.

bd 7 years, 10 months ago

What happened to the old prison farms,where they grew their own food and worked on road gangs???

Oh, thats right, lawyers with nothing better to do changed all of that.

Now they watch tv, lift weights, and are a complete burden on society!

WHAT A WASTE!

Baille 7 years, 10 months ago

"We will not give up our God-given right to capital punishment."

Oh please. Quoting the bible to support a moral argument? Text written, intepreted and carried out by men? I would think that one would be very careful before saying that the words of the ancient Hebrew tribes, as modified by countless generations of interlopers, equalled the divine sanction of cold blooded killing.

bd 7 years, 10 months ago

75x55 get a clue! What we have now does not work! Too many freeloaders!

Linda Endicott 7 years, 10 months ago

That would definitely stop a lot of trials and litigation, Baille.

captain_poindexter 7 years, 10 months ago

rothschild should include the actual poll - how the questions were worded, where the 500 respondents were from, political party, religion, etc. etc.

without that information this poll as well as this story is worthless - basically all opinion with no statistics.

Baille 7 years, 10 months ago

Aye, aye, Captain. I heartily agree with tha' bit o' reasonin'.

Bladerunner 7 years, 10 months ago

I agree with madmike. It would be great to know who was polled. If I wanted to skew the results in favor of removing capital punishment. I would poll squishy Lawrence residents. I say lets poll 500 Texans and see what the results are!

Daniel Speicher 7 years, 10 months ago

Posted by scenebooster (anonymous) on February 12, 2007 at 1:59 p.m. (Suggest removal)

When Christians use their religion to exhort righteous killing, it's apple pie time.

When Muslims do it, it's "evil".<<

No, scene... When Christians use these excuses to exhort "righteous" killing it, too, is evil. I hate the fact that atrocities are carried out (not only in the past, but in the present) in the name of my God. I apologize for every fellow Christian out there who sees any loss of life acceptable and/or righteous. Christ had a consistant ethic on life... So should we. (John 8:1-11, emphasis on verse 7; also, when considering war, Luke 6:27-36, emphasis on verse 36)

--Danny Speicher

werekoala 7 years, 10 months ago

No, voters are not against the death penalty. Maybe back east, but not hee, not in this decade. Hell, in case you haven't been paying attention, we've been busy debating whether or not the beacon of freedom and liberty that is the USA should torture people. Sorry, try again.

Here's the deal - if you're against the death penalty, your best tactic to eventually sway public opinion to your side is to focus on the many clear-cut cases where the death penalty is misused, used unjustly, or without competent defense counsel.

I'd say arguing things like requiring a higher standard of proof for implementation of the death penalty, automatic appeals, and written guidelines for sentencing to this fate are in order.

Because these opponents do have a point -- many people who were on Death Row have been exonnerated by DNA evidence. I'm not sure whether or not I think the death penalty is ever just, but I for damn sure don't want the state executing an innocent man - ever.

But good luck on this, guys. Growing up in a prison town, I realized that the prison walls don't just exist to keep prisoners in, but also to keep our consciences out.

Baille 7 years, 10 months ago

"The poll could not have included the opinions of people who have been murdered."

Those murdered by an individual or those murdered by the state?

Tychoman 7 years, 10 months ago

Why do we kill people who kill people to show that killing people is wrong?

One of my best friends has that bumper sticker and it always makes me think. I hope that it makes everyone else here think as well (as big of a change as that would be for several of you).

Linda Endicott 7 years, 10 months ago

Wow, scootter, what an example of vigilante justice.

Which can be, and frequently is, wrong, you know. In the heat of anger, just because someone mentions a suspect doesn't mean that they're guilty of what they're accused of. But after you mete out your vigilante justice, it's a little too late to admit you had the wrong person, huh? "Oops, sorry, wrong guy...let's dust off the body and send him on his way again."

In fact, a lot of people in the past paid to have the stains cleaned up...the stains of innocent blacks; the stains of all innocent people who were merely working toward equality.

daman 7 years, 10 months ago

I don't know if the death penalty is right or wrong, but I do know the world is over populated and killing a few genetic bad seeds seems reasonable to me. Is it a deterent to others? Don't care, certainly a deterent to the one executed. Is is barbaric? Certainly, but I don't really care if a murderer is brutalized, heck, they get to die for something they did wrong unlike the victim and more importantly they get to die a humane death something I'm quite sure they didn't extend to their victim. Now that I think about it, we don't use the death penalty enough in this country.

Baille 7 years, 10 months ago

If we are going to abandon independent thought and moral reasoning for simple reliance on ancient tribal laws, why not choose the Code of Hammurabi?

For instance, the following law would add tension to the trial and put pressure on Branson to get a conviction:

"If any one bring an accusation of any crime before the elders, and does not prove what he has charged, he shall, if it be a capital offense charged, be put to death."

http://www.wsu.edu/~dee/MESO/CODE.HTM

Daniel Speicher 7 years, 10 months ago

When I read the story of the crucifixion I become enraged at the Romans use of force, absolutely. I cannot believe that you think what happened to Christ was humane or the "right thing" to do. Now, admittedly, He could have called down a legion of angels to lift him from that cross. But, He didn't... He chose to use man's injustice to satisfy divine justice for all.

Keep in mind that Christ is a primary example of the capital punishment system NOT working... He was a man WITHOUT sin and whom the officials had NO reason to crucify, who was crucified due to justice NOT being done. So, before you go and throw Christ's crucifixion into this debauchery of scriptural misunderstanding, start evaluating exactly which scripture you'd like to twist to fit your sadist mentality.

So, in answer to your question am I Christian or New Age... I am born again and extremely depressed at the maniacal right-wing conspiracy that teaches Christians the only way to vote is with the right and teaches culture that Christianity is not about love, but about man imposing God's divine justice, when it should be God's job alone to do so. And, so, I ask you, are you a Christian or God, Himself?

--Danny Speicher

Daniel Speicher 7 years, 10 months ago

Go on believing what you wish. But, the fact of the matter is Christ was without sin. I'm sure you wouldn't agree with that. And, the Romans (who had no idea of what sacrifice He intended to make), executed Him for no reason valid under the law. Christ was, like many criminals in our system today, executed because he was a trouble-maker (although not a law-breaker.)

You, my friend, are the one with flawed theology. Exactly what does the story in John 8:1-11 mean to you? I know you have sinned... And you better believe that those involved in the government have sinned. No one on earth is without sin and, therefore, the stone should not be cast.

Furthermore, your kind of Christian has done more to harm the good name of Christ throughout history than could ever be measured. You are the king leading the crusades into the Holy Land... You are the cardinal condemning the innocent to death during the Inquisition. You are the extremists burning "witches" alive in colonial New England. Your penchant for bloodlust in the name of the Prince of Peace is not only inaccurate but downright absurd. I still have no idea why so many generations of Christians have bought into this lie. Christ tells us to turn the other cheek, not cast the first stone, treat our enemies with love and not seek vengance. Where is the confusion?

--Danny Speicher

Daniel Speicher 7 years, 10 months ago

I will let you have the last word (as I'm sure you will post again) because dialoguing with someone who is so set in their view of sadism is not a worthwhile endeavor for me (or anyone.) Frankly, if one believes that the crusades were a "positive" note in Christian history, pursuing rational conversation on any topic, I imagine, would be quite difficult.

As far as Christ confirming temporal authority, I do not disagree that the Bible teaches that the authority of man must be upheld. However, it is our responsibility, as Christians, to make sure the government that we are a part of holds as closely to the heart of Christ and truth of Scripture as possible. Surely you would agree with that! Surely you would agree that not all governments are looked favorably upon by God. Because, if you believed that you would also believe that the Soviet empire and the Nazi regime were governments to be bowed down to (as a citizen of each government) and never questioned because "God ordained it, therefore it must be."

I am not sure you realize how fatalistic you sound when you state that just because Christ confirms temporal authority, than the authority must, indeed, be correct in its laws. Quite frankly, it seems to me that we ought to be fighting tooth and nail for a consistent ethic of life... Surely you don't think the unborn are the only people on earth who should be granted the privelege of life!

Furthermore, Christ was speaking to the Pharisees in John 8. The Pharisees (who were authorities in Jewish law... The "congress" and "judges" of modern day) brought forth a woman caught in adultery. They asked if they should uphold the law and stone her to death. Christ answered, in response to the death penalty, "He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to throw a stone at her." And, likewise, he is saying to you, as a voting nation, "He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to flip the switch... inject the poison... tighten the noose." Christ's words are as true today as they were then... The death penalty is wrong.

Now, argue all you wish... I am washing my hands of your refusal to read scripture at face value.

--Danny Speicher

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