„[On the death penalty] Seems so absurd to me that the laws, that are the expression of the public will, that hate and punish the murder, make one themselves, and, to dissuade citizens from the murder, order a public murder. (Chapter XXVIII)“

Cesare Beccaria Foto
Cesare Beccaria2
italienischer Rechtsphilosoph 1738 - 1794
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Howard Dean Foto
Thomas More Foto

„I think putting thieves to death is not lawful; and it is plain and obvious that it is absurd and of ill consequence to the commonwealth that a thief and a murderer should be equally punished“

—  Thomas More English Renaissance humanist 1478 - 1535
Context: I think putting thieves to death is not lawful; and it is plain and obvious that it is absurd and of ill consequence to the commonwealth that a thief and a murderer should be equally punished; for if a robber sees that his danger is the same if he is convicted of theft as if he were guilty of murder, this will naturally incite him to kill the person whom otherwise he would only have robbed; since, if the punishment is the same, there is more security, and less danger of discovery, when he that can best make it is put out of the way; so that terrifying thieves too much provokes them to cruelty. Ch. 1 : Discourses of Raphael Hythloday, of the Best State of a Commonwealth

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Italo Svevo Foto
Warren Farrell Foto
Jesse Ventura Foto

„How come life in prison doesn't mean life? Until it does, we're not ready to do away with the death penalty. Stop thinking in terms of "punishment" for a minute and think in terms of safeguarding innocent people from incorrigible murderers.“

—  Jesse Ventura American politician and former professional wrestler 1951
Context: How come life in prison doesn't mean life? Until it does, we're not ready to do away with the death penalty. Stop thinking in terms of "punishment" for a minute and think in terms of safeguarding innocent people from incorrigible murderers. Americans have a right to go about their lives without worrying about these people being back out on the street. So until we can make sure they're off the street permanently, we have to grit our teeth and put up with the death penalty. So we need to work toward making a life sentence meaningful again. If life meant life, I could, if you'll excuse the pun, live without the death penalty. We don't have it here in Minnesota, thank God, and I won't advocate to get it. But I will advocate to make life in prison mean life. I don't think I would want the responsibility for enforcing the death penalties. There's always the inevitable question of whether someone you gave the order to execute might truly have been innocent.

Fyodor Dostoyevsky Foto
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Rudolph Rummel Foto

„Democracies don’t murder their citizens.“

—  Rudolph Rummel American academic 1932 - 2014
p. 95

Albert Camus Foto

„Capital punishment is the most premeditated of murders“

—  Albert Camus French author and journalist 1913 - 1960
Context: Capital punishment is the most premeditated of murders, to which no criminal’s deed, however calculated, can be compared. For there to be an equivalency, the death penalty would have to punish a criminal who had warned his victim of the date on which he would inflict a horrible death on him and who, from that moment onward, had confined him at his mercy for months. Such a monster is not to be encountered in private life.

Alan Moore Foto

„Murder? Don't talk to me about murder. I invented murder!“

—  Alan Moore English writer primarily known for his work in comic books 1953
Cain, Saga of the Swamp Thing #33

Alphonse Karr Foto
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Mark Twain Foto

„Murder is sometimes punished, free speech always“

—  Mark Twain American author and humorist 1835 - 1910
Context: As an active privilege, [free speech] ranks with the privilege of committing murder: we may exercise it if we are willing to take the consequences. Murder is forbidden both in form and in fact; free speech is granted in form but forbidden in fact. By the common estimate both are crimes, and are held in deep odium by all civilized peoples. Murder is sometimes punished, free speech always.

Martin Luther King, Jr. Foto

„I'm concerned about justice. I'm concerned about brotherhood. I'm concerned about truth. And when one is concerned about these, he can never advocate violence. For through violence you may murder a murderer but you can't murder murder. Through violence you may murder a liar but you can't establish truth. Through violence you may murder a hater, but you can't murder hate. Darkness cannot put out darkness. Only light can do that.“

—  Martin Luther King, Jr. American clergyman, activist, and leader in the American Civil Rights Movement 1929 - 1968
Context: I say to you today that I still stand by nonviolence. And I am still convinced that it is the most potent weapon available to the Negro in his struggle for justice in this country. And the other thing is that I am concerned about a better world. I'm concerned about justice. I'm concerned about brotherhood. I'm concerned about truth. And when one is concerned about these, he can never advocate violence. For through violence you may murder a murderer but you can't murder murder. Through violence you may murder a liar but you can't establish truth. Through violence you may murder a hater, but you can't murder hate. Darkness cannot put out darkness. Only light can do that.

„When mass murder’s been answered with mass murder, rape with rape, hate with hate, there’s no longer much meaning in asking whose ax is the bloodier.“

—  Walter M. Miller, Jr. American fiction writer 1923 - 1996
Context: The abbot snapped off the set. "Where’s the truth”? he asked quietly. “What’s to be believed? Or does it matter at all? When mass murder’s been answered with mass murder, rape with rape, hate with hate, there’s no longer much meaning in asking whose ax is the bloodier. Evil, on evil, piled on evil. Was there any justification in our ‘police action’ in space? How can we know? Certainly there was no justification for what they did — or was there? We only know what that thing says, and that thing is a captive. The Asian radio has to say what will least displease its government; ours has to say what will least displease our fine patriotic opinionated rabble, which is what, coincidentally, the government wants it to say anyhow, so where’s the difference?" Ch 26

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