My faith in humanity is a little bit more restored. Not so much in Texans, but the rest of humanity.
Declines in support for Rick Perry since his announcement of his candidacy for president. So far, the better he is known, the worse he does. He may yet turn that around, but it’s a problem for his campaign.
From Nate Silver at fivethirtyeight.
When the moderator mentioned that Rick Perry has presided over a record 234 executions during his tenure as governor, the audience burst into applause. Wow.
Seriously, WTF?! I’m not intrinsically opposed to the death penalty (though I don’t understand why people who don’t trust the government to provide them w/ health care, education, or public services trust it to decide which people to kill — death panels, anyone?). But the death of people — guilty or innocent — is not something to be celebrated. You know who cheers the death of people? People like Osama Bin Laden. There, I said it. The people that cheered (and Rick Perry who seemed pleased) are no better than the people who cheered on 9/11. In both cases, those cheering the dead thought they “deserved” it — and were willing to let some innocents die for a greater “principle.” In my mind, there is no natural distinction. People who revel in the death of others — even the guilty — are people who enjoy killing. Such are not Christians, and they’re not even healthy human beings. They are one snap moment away from becoming Timothy McVeigh, Jared Lee Loughner, Anders Behring Breivik, or any other mass murderer. Even a Bin Laden.
I should underscore that I’m not one of those people (who I respect and admire) that believe the death penalty should be abolished. While I would have no problem at all w/ it being abolished, I can concede that it may be an appropriate punishment in some, probably very limited, circumstances. But by nature the death penalty is something we do shamefully. That’s why it happens in the dark of night, behind closed door, and never in public. We may believe the people in the chair or gurney deserve death, but we are ashamed to participate in their death. That’s how it should be. If you want to cheer on an execution, I suggest you go back in time to the Dark Ages.
For me, the most telling moment last night was when the audience cheered when Rick Perry was asked about overseeing the executions of 234 people as Governor.
Those cheers reminded me that the Romans pretty much had a handle on the way politics works, “Christian” or not:
It’s all blood and circuses.
What he said.