The "No One Deserves To Die" Myth PDF Print E-mail
Written by Dr. John E. Russell Sr   

The late Supreme Court Justice Harry Blackmun contended that capital punishment "promotes no deterrence whatsoever. . .capital punishment is sheer, pure retribution." (The Kansas City Star, February 17, 1993). Could it be that Justice Blackmun was manifesting the psychological mechanism of compensation? He was supportive of Roe Vs Wade and indirectly shares in the murder of 57 million inocent and helpless children. Guilt does some strange things in the human psyche. Jesus died to take away our sin and burden of guilt. Let us hope that Mr. Blackmun found peace with God.

Norma McCorvey, who was known as Jane Roe in the 1973 Supreme Court ruling, accepted Christ as her Savior. She now plans to help women "save their babies." ("Woman known as `Roe' joins abortion foes," The Kansas City Star, 11 August 1995, sec. A, p. 1).

Once a murderer is executed, he can never murder another human being! In this sense, capital punishment is a deterrent. It is never right to punish someone "as an example for others," but swift justice has that effect!

Every criminal has a right to a speedy trial and enforcement of sentence, otherwise the delay itself could become a cruel and unusual [mental] punishment. Also, a speedy trial and sentence should be a deterrent to all forms of crime, including murder.

While serving as an Army Chaplain, part of my duty was visiting prisoners. One particular murderer comes to mind—even imprisonment did not stop him from continuing to kill. His last victim, that I know of, was a prison guard. Even in the most secure areas of prison, there will be opportunities to kill.

If Bob Bardella had been executed after he murdered his first victim, then he could not have murdered anyone else—likewise Ted Bundy, Jeffrey Dahmer and other serial killers.

States that do not have the death penalty have prison inmates who "execute" and murder other inmates and guards. These states practice capital punishment by default. That is, they allow inmates to be its executioners. Since these states are responsible for their inmates, they are responsible for every murder that occurs in their prisons! The federal government also incurs guilt in this manner. To its credit, Kansas recently passed a limited capital punishment bill. However, it did not go far enough—a limited bill says that some human life is more important than other human life.

Some claim that the scriptures teach against capital punishment. However, the Old Testament does teach the death penalty for several crimes.

The Sixth Commandment is correctly translated, "You shall not murder." (Exodus 20:13, New International Version). (See my electronic book, The Ten Commandments. Download this book free at .)

People murder for different reasons. Premeditated murder originates in a sociopathic person—someone with a seared conscience. Motives include (1) hatred, (2) jealousy, (3) covetousness (wrongful desire or violation of the Tenth Commandment). (4) An attempt to cover another crime by murdering witnesses. (5) Passion, which speaks of one so angry that he loses self-control. (6) Sometimes someone who is suicidal may become homicidal before killing himself. (7) Euthanasia, from the Greek, "dying well," can be a well-intentioned, but misguided action. For instance, while I was serving as an Army Chaplain in Viet Nam, a young soldier told me that his buddy had been wounded and was dying. His fatally wounded friend asked him to shoot him to end his suffering. According to this young soldier, he did. I drove him directly to the psychiatrist, because he was suicidal.

(8) Another motive for murder is the devaluing of human life on a rational plane. Dr. Etienne-Emile Baulieu is a notorious example. Baulieu is the infamous French inventor of the abortifacient RU-486, who made a statement on national TV that human life is not that valuable to him. He is reminiscent of evil Nazi medical doctors. The French fought the Nazis in world war II. The French defeated the Nazis physically, but the French have been conquered by Nazi morality in some respects—likewise the US. Probiophobes (those who fear and hate pro-lifers) usually are quick to murder unborn and newborn children, yet get beside themselves when a vicious murderer is about to be executed. Their position is irrational!

(9) Some excuse murderers on the basis of "mental illness." However, there is a school of psychology that states that there is no such thing as mental illness. Many problems such as delusions, psychoses, even physical "organ language" sicknesses can have their genesis in past irresponsibilities. When the irresponsibilities are corrected, the so called illnesses go away—research confirms this.

(10) Sex drive can be a motive to murder. In rape, the victim could be murdered so the one who rapes cannot be identified. On the other hand, the rapist may kill to facilitate rape. I personally talked with one murderer who raped a woman after he murdered her. He was not executed for his double crime. Some contend that control, rather than sex drive is the motive for rape.

(11) Then, there is the disgusting, demonical disease that desires the dead. Those who practice necrophilia may kill.

(12) Those who practice cannibalism may kill.

(13) Also, one who has HIV murders his sexual partner when he transfers the virus to him, since there is no human cure for AIDS. An example of this was published in The Kansas City Star, a homophile newspaper, a few years ago. A homosexual airline steward deliberately spread HIV to his partners. The article did not condemn this type of murder. Any individual or organization who supports the practice of homosexuality and heterosexual promiscuity must share in the guilt of murder with the weapon of HIV.

(13) Some say that brain damage could be a reason to hold a murderer not culpable. However, there are people living today who only have half a brain (literally) and who are functioning well in society. One of Dr. Ben Carson's young patients is making high grades in school!

However, there is a place in our justice system for pardoning murderers. Some state governors have this authority. The President of the United States also has this authority in some cases. It would seem that if a murderer no longer has a "murderer's heart," that he should be pardoned. How does one distinguish a prisoner with "jailhouse religion" from a prisoner with a sincere change of heart? As a professional, I would look for changed behavior and speech. Then, too, the type of crime would have a bearing.

Killing and murder are not necessarily the same. War entails killing, but it has been my experience that most of our servicemen are not murderers and they do not like killing.

Manslaughter entails the accidental killing of another human being. The motive is different, but the effect is the same. For instance, a mother accidentally backs her car over her child and kills it. She is in anguish over what she did. She does not want her child dead—but the child is dead and the mother is guilty of killing her child, but incurs no culpability. However, if she knew that her brakes were defective, and their going out caused her child's death, she incurs some culpability. Likewise the driver who is under the influence of drugs and has an accident in which people are killed, is guilty of manslaughter and incurs culpability—is held accountable and should be punished.

Execution of a murderer by the state is killing, but it incurs no culpability. If the state does not execute its murderers, then it does incur culpability, since it allows the murderer to commit murder over and over again. It is a heart-wrenching dilemma, but the responsible choice must be made. Execution is the only option for those who love life.

Prevention of murder is like prevention of disease in the field of medicine. A speedy and just trial of murderers will prevent murders. The slow process of appeals along with some being let off because of a technicality, certainly is less a deterrent! Lives are saved, suffering is reduced and costs are contained by the practice of preventative medicine. In the same manner, character training in children would prevent future murders, suffering of the bereaved, and unnecessary cost to those involved and to the American taxpayer. Parents bear primary responsibility in character training. Next comes the church or synagogue, then the state. We cannot remove the Ten Commandments and discipline from classrooms and expect children to receive character training. We cannot permeate the media with violence and immorality and expect to produce a moral child. What a price for social experimentation! It is grievous to see the results of this experiment: children killing other children. Let's do what we must do!


Essay 14, from my eBook, Essays Exposing the Myths of Political Correctness. Download this book free at

© John E. Russell 1993. 2012.


In Essentials: Unity; In non-essentials: Liberty; In all things: Charity—Peter Meiderlin 1626.


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Last Updated on Saturday, 04 August 2012 13:47