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Ariel Castro hanged

Discussion in 'Tilted Philosophy, Politics, and Economics' started by Tully Mars, Sep 4, 2013.

  1. Baraka_Guru

    Baraka_Guru Möderätor Staff Member

    Location:
    Toronto
    Well, for the record, I was hoping mostly to understand.
     
  2. Borla

    Borla Moderator Staff Member

    On a sidenote, is anything really consistently done with guys like him once they are in prison to try to help society learn about ways to prevent such crimes?

    I think I'm safe in saying that most of us would agree that something went wrong with him. Maybe he was genetically predisposed, maybe he had things happen to him that made it more likely, maybe he engaged in some behavior that enacted a change in him that made it more likely, or any myriad of other factors could have come into play.

    Do we as society (and I really don't know the answer) do anything to use people like him, Jeffery Dahmer, or others to try to help prevent it in the future? Or once they have a life sentence (or death sentence and are allowed to rot for decades before death) do we just throw away the key and forget about it?

    I'll be honest and say that my feelings on him dying versus living a natural life in prison really only hinge on what would make the victims feel better. I don't really care personally. But how much resources should we use (or are we using) to take a "lessons learned" from crimes like these, especially once it has been decided that they are going to be locked up forever?

    Maybe that's a more practical way to direct this conversation?
     
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  3. Baraka_Guru

    Baraka_Guru Möderätor Staff Member

    Location:
    Toronto
    There are actually parallels to this in Buddhist ethics, mostly through the idea of karma—often: helping yourself through helping others. Compassion for others usually needs to begin with compassion for oneself. It is often said that one cannot be fully compassionate without it. Conversely, those who do unspeakable things are likely suffering from self-hatred or some great degree of delusion about themselves.

    Are there really any truly happy rapists and murderers?
    --- merged: Sep 4, 2013 at 12:27 PM ---
    I think the problem is that people often consider the case closed once retribution has been meted out. I think it makes sense to try to understand the mental health issues regarding criminal activity. It's going to vary, of course, but I think we may find that criminals have as a proportion a higher instance of mental health problems, much like the case with the homeless.

    I don't think it helps to call homeless people stupid idiots for making stupid decisions, or whatever. At the same time, I don't think it helps to do this with criminals either. It's been mentioned above that recovering or reforming isn't likely going to happen with people like Castro, but, man, why not figure out what makes them tick?

    I'm more interested in learning about human behaviour than I am about the closure people might get with capital punishment or any other punishment. I think the criminal justice system and the "correctional" system is failing practically wholesale in this respect. The system in many ways compounds problems, especially when you look at lesser crimes.

    At the very least, the government should be pouring funding into research regarding violence, criminal behaviour, etc.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 11, 2013
  4. rogue49

    rogue49 Tech Kung Fu Artist Staff Member

    Location:
    Baltimore/DC
    I've already gone through this debate.
    So, I'll keep it short...

    Good, one less thing to worry about.
     
  5. kramus

    kramus what I might see Donor

    Meh. I don't/won't get caught in refining the definitions and realms of behaviour when it comes down to dealing with dangerous trash like this guy. Personally I feel there are those among us who are genetically human, who are socialized enough to function with the greater mass of humanity, but who (for whatever reason) have enough variance from generally accepted norms to be deemed monstrous due to their persistent and repeated actions/activities. Study these "people" when you can neutralize them, sure. But of first importance is the neutralizing. Lock up or a bullet in the head, either one. Whatever your circumstances and personal needs and ethics encourage you to follow.
    The thing is, these humanity-cloaked "monsters" (glad to use the term, happy to call them evil as well) will always be with us. Always. I doubt our future cousins, when Homo sapiens sapiens is nought but a sprinkle in their inherited DNA, will be entirely free of unempathic and selfishly horrific individuals. And the choice will still be, lock up or a bullet in the head.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  6. mixedmedia

    mixedmedia ...

    Location:
    Florida
    That also brings into consideration the fact that people who commit truly heinous crimes like Dahmer, Castro, Bundy, et al., are not engaged in the same kind of decision-making process as your typical rational person. Usually their actions are the result of either a true diagnosis of mental disease or years of maladaptive, obsessive thought patterns. It's not as if you just wake up one day and say, 'hey, I feel like seeing how cruel and vicious I can be today.' It's a process of aberrant normalization that takes many years (in most cases) to result in action. So, to kind of bring it around to what Borla is saying, I do think it would behoove us to take a less emotional, more scientific approach to analyzing and dealing with criminal behavior. We should WANT to understand more about it.
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2013
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  7. Baraka_Guru

    Baraka_Guru Möderätor Staff Member

    Location:
    Toronto
    What I tend to get caught up on is the emotional response. You get a guy who's committed atrocious things, and sure enough the masses respond with their fantasies of what atrocious things they want to do to him—an eye for an eye or whatever. Usually this process involves demonization or dehumanization. Otherwise, how can they be angry and hateful enough against a person to want to do inhumane things to them?

    It's like these people want to walk on a two-way street with socio- and psychopaths. Do they really want to take that path?

    Of course, another part of me admits that much if not all of this is just talk, a cathartic practice of raging out against horrors by sharing fantasies of the horrors they'd pay out in return.

    Either way, I find it makes me weary.
     
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  8. mixedmedia

    mixedmedia ...

    Location:
    Florida
    You really see it come full circle when you sit around with a group of people saying such things about 'other bad people' who whistle quite a different tune just months later when it is one of their own - someone they are close to...a brother, a son. I've witnessed it first hand. It's easy to vilify and imagine all manner of atrocity happening to some villain that you don't know. Quite another thing when it is someone, a real person, who is close to you.

    I watched a really good documentary on Netflix about Jeffrey Dahmer and they interviewed a woman who lived in his building and had befriended him. When everything came to light, she expressed anger and felt betrayed by him, you know, she was horrified. She was in prison at the time of his murder, sitting in the common room watching tv when the news was announced and she said the room erupted into cheers and applause. Everyone was so happy that he was dead. But she went back to her cell and cried. Even he was a human person who had good qualities. This monster, evil thing it's just...convenience. I understand not caring or not wanting to understand, but I can't accept the simplicity of those labels.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Chris Noyb

    Chris Noyb Get in, buckle up, hang on, & don't criticize.

    Location:
    Large City, TX
    Castro showed no contrition at his sentencing, although his suicide (perhaps he had some help?) might indicate some feelings of guilt, or the reality of life in prison got to him.

    My response at the time of the news was "Good." I believe in the death penalty, and feel that Castro should've received it. Now he's dead. Good.

    There are a couple of books that might be of interest to some of you. Dead Man Walking by Sister Helen Prejean (yes, it's been out for quite a while, but I only recently read it). She makes a very strong case against the death penalty, for financial reasons as well as moral ones. Guilty By Reason Of Insanity by Dorothy Otnow Lewis, M.D. She makes a strong case that many sociopaths have been physically damaged (frontal lobes) to the point of not being responsible for not controlling their violent impulses.