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Life and Death Row : The Mass Execution - BBC

I would recommend warching this set of four documentaries which looks at the death penalty in Arkansas. It's an amazing insight into the stories of the victims and those who carried out the crimes and explores the issues surrounding the use of the death penalty.
It's on iPlayer and is a really thought provoking watch.
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Comments

  • Watched the first, good so far.
  • Fascinating stuff and brilliantly put together would whole heartedly recommend.
  • There must be something in the American psyche... reading yesterday of guy executed in Florida whose last meal was pork chops, steak, fries and two tubs of ice cream! Bloody hell, if I was about to meet my maker the last thing I would do is sit down to a feast!
  • Watched these on iPlayer. Great viewing.

    The clemency hearing stuff was very interesting to watch. Clearly Arkansas is a little less brutal than other states as inmates do seem to get clemency occasionally.
    addick05 said:

    There must be something in the American psyche... reading yesterday of guy executed in Florida whose last meal was pork chops, steak, fries and two tubs of ice cream! Bloody hell, if I was about to meet my maker the last thing I would do is sit down to a feast!

    Most of them have been on Death Row for 20+ years and see the execution as a release - assume they are at ease with the process. I believe some prison wardens offer a sedative on the morning of the execution as well.
  • Another documentary on iPlayer well worth watching is Machines. More like an Arthouse film, but is made all the better by no wretched background music, and no affectedly sombre voiceover.
  • I really liked the first two seasons of this. I shall watch these over the weekend.

    I wonder why the BBC don't publicise these shows very much because they really are some of the most interesting TV programmes they broadcast.
  • Watched them all, great documentary.

    My only gripe would be not everyone that I wanted to be, was executed
  • Saw the first one on tele last Sunday, 2nd one is tomorrow. I know all 4 are on iplayer but it's finding the time to watch it.
    Excellent series though.
  • Watched the whole series, very thought provoking.....
  • Watched these on iPlayer. Great viewing.

    The clemency hearing stuff was very interesting to watch. Clearly Arkansas is a little less brutal than other states as inmates do seem to get clemency occasionally.

    addick05 said:

    There must be something in the American psyche... reading yesterday of guy executed in Florida whose last meal was pork chops, steak, fries and two tubs of ice cream! Bloody hell, if I was about to meet my maker the last thing I would do is sit down to a feast!

    Most of them have been on Death Row for 20+ years and see the execution as a release - assume they are at ease with the process. I believe some prison wardens offer a sedative on the morning of the execution as well.
    Another quirk in the US justice system. Twenty-five years just waiting to die and never know when the the hammer is going to fall (I know it's all to do with their appeals system etc) but it's like they are getting punished twice. I mean 20-25 years is really a life sentence - so they serve that and then get topped anyway.
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  • Compelling series, gives a real insight into how the US justice system works, or doesn't depending on your point of view.
  • addick05 said:

    Watched these on iPlayer. Great viewing.

    The clemency hearing stuff was very interesting to watch. Clearly Arkansas is a little less brutal than other states as inmates do seem to get clemency occasionally.

    addick05 said:

    There must be something in the American psyche... reading yesterday of guy executed in Florida whose last meal was pork chops, steak, fries and two tubs of ice cream! Bloody hell, if I was about to meet my maker the last thing I would do is sit down to a feast!

    Most of them have been on Death Row for 20+ years and see the execution as a release - assume they are at ease with the process. I believe some prison wardens offer a sedative on the morning of the execution as well.
    Another quirk in the US justice system. Twenty-five years just waiting to die and never know when the the hammer is going to fall (I know it's all to do with their appeals system etc) but it's like they are getting punished twice. I mean 20-25 years is really a life sentence - so they serve that and then get topped anyway.
    I understand what you mean but 20/25 certainly isnt a life sentence.
    I really don't know why they call it such, a life sentence should mean they don't ever, ever see the outside world again.
  • I really struggle around this because I used to agree with the Death Penalty I don't now but I often feel so much emphasis is centred around those waiting to be executed, that the victims of these horrendous and brutal crimes get overlooked.

    I realise that the victims want retribution and from their point of view and if we were in their shoes maybe we'd want that too.

    Most seem to think that a life sentence is sufficient, if it is life and not release after a period of time.

    But I think I can understand how and why victims don't feel that that is justice.
  • I really struggle around this because I used to agree with the Death Penalty I don't now but I often feel so much emphasis is centred around those waiting to be executed, that the victims of these horrendous and brutal crimes get overlooked.

    I realise that the victims want retribution and from their point of view and if we were in their shoes maybe we'd want that too.

    Most seem to think that a life sentence is sufficient, if it is life and not release after a period of time.

    But I think I can understand how and why victims don't feel that that is justice.

    I feel the same. Don’t agree with the death sentence but find it difficult to have any sympathy for those they do execute when you consider what they’ve done.
  • I really struggle around this because I used to agree with the Death Penalty I don't now but I often feel so much emphasis is centred around those waiting to be executed, that the victims of these horrendous and brutal crimes get overlooked.

    I realise that the victims want retribution and from their point of view and if we were in their shoes maybe we'd want that too.

    Most seem to think that a life sentence is sufficient, if it is life and not release after a period of time.

    But I think I can understand how and why victims don't feel that that is justice.

    The only victims who really move on are those able to forgive - I accept that's incredibly hard but watching this series those who can forgive are the ones who seem to have got through it.

    It's too easy to look at things in black and white terms - what is so good about this series is that it shows all sides of the story.

    Nobody can accuse Arkansas where the program is set of having a liberal sentencing policy.

  • I would want them killed end of.
    I would push the button, open the trapdoor, pull the trigger, turn on old sparky with no qualms at all.

  • MrOneLung said:

    I would want them killed end of.
    I would push the button, open the trapdoor, pull the trigger, turn on old sparky with no qualms at all.

    You're obviously a deep thinker.
  • I’m certainly glad that we don’t have the death penalty in this country.

    I believe in an eye for an eye, but I too am pleased we do not have the system.

    Innocent people would be having their lives taken away from them.
  • edited February 26
    For the most heinous of crimes, when guilt is proven beyond absolutely any doubt, I think they should be gone with in a week.
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  • For the most heinous of crimes, when guilt is proven beyond absolutely any doubt, I think they should be gone with in a week.

    There are numerous miscarriages of justice - the dead don't get a retrial.

    The death penalty is barbaric - It's just another murder and demeans society.
  • in your opinion
  • MrOneLung said:

    I would want them killed end of.
    I would push the button, open the trapdoor, pull the trigger, turn on old sparky with no qualms at all.

    You're obviously a deep thinker.
    So if someone killed your kin you wouldn't feel the same?
  • MrOneLung said:

    MrOneLung said:

    I would want them killed end of.
    I would push the button, open the trapdoor, pull the trigger, turn on old sparky with no qualms at all.

    You're obviously a deep thinker.
    So if someone killed your kin you wouldn't feel the same?
    Exactly. Imagine someone raped and murdered your love one and you’ve got some dickhead standing outside the prison crying for the criminal and waving a ‘what would Jesus do’ sign.
  • MrOneLung said:

    in your opinion

    If you look round the world at countries with the death penalty It's done nothing to address crime. The US with its gun laws, executions etc just ignores the causes of crime.

    If the main purpose of a criminal justice system is just to punish people then perhaps we could start chopping off hands, stoning people and bring back public executions. If religion gets involved we could put homosexuals to death as they do in certain countries.

    Killing someone to me appears to be a barbaric act.

  • edited February 26
    There are crimes I think that the perpetrators should be executed, although I do have an issue with The State taking life ----- 25 years on death row because their lawyers dragging the whole thing out ,out out and then claiming its "cruel and unusual punishment " is bollox.

    The guy who got a delay last night was a real piece of shit ----2 lots of DNA but his lawyer NOW says it's the the wrong type of DNA ?

    A very good program tho
  • MrOneLung said:

    in your opinion

    If you look round the world at countries with the death penalty It's done nothing to address crime. The US with its gun laws, executions etc just ignores the causes of crime.

    If the main purpose of a criminal justice system is just to punish people then perhaps we could start chopping off hands, stoning people and bring back public executions. If religion gets involved we could put homosexuals to death as they do in certain countries.

    Killing someone to me appears to be a barbaric act.

    Barry Bennell abused hundreds of young boys, affecting and destroying so many peoples lives, he’s shown no remorse and should be put down like an animal.

    I would not want him to suffer in pain, but he serves absolutely nothing to society and is simply a drain on the system. If that makes me barbaric then I can live with that.
  • There are crimes I think that the perpetrators should be executed, although I do have an issue with The State taking life ----- 25 years on death row because their lawyers dragging the whole thing out ,out out and then claiming its "cruel and unusual punishment " is bollox.

    The guy who got a delay last night was a real piece of shit ----2 lots of DNA but his lawyer NOW says it's the the wrong type of DNA ?

    The argument for the death penalty is that it is a deterrent - there doesn't appear to be a lot of evidence to back this up.

    'An eye for an eye' style justice is very simplistic and the sort of thing religious fanatics come out with.
  • For the most heinous of crimes, when guilt is proven beyond absolutely any doubt, I think they should be gone with in a week.

    There are numerous miscarriages of justice - the dead don't get a retrial.

    The death penalty is barbaric - It's just another murder and demeans society.
    That's why I said "proven beyond absolutely any doubt". When you also consider the advances in forensic science, cctv etc., I think that miscarriages of justice are far reduced. But as I said, people who are later found not guilty, are generally not found "guilty beyond absolutely any doubt" in the first place and there's usually a question marks in there somewhere,.
  • MrOneLung said:

    in your opinion

    If you look round the world at countries with the death penalty It's done nothing to address crime. The US with its gun laws, executions etc just ignores the causes of crime.

    If the main purpose of a criminal justice system is just to punish people then perhaps we could start chopping off hands, stoning people and bring back public executions. If religion gets involved we could put homosexuals to death as they do in certain countries.

    Killing someone to me appears to be a barbaric act.

    I am not looking to address crime - I am looking to punish them.
    If someone wants to rape and murder a child, I don't think the thought of a possible death penalty is going to stop them. If they do it, they pay the price.
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