Liberty and Justice For All, part 2

A man was arrested for murder. He didn’t set out to kill anyone, just to get some extra cash to pay the rent. But, the convenience store clerk went for a weapon under the counter, and the thief fired the handgun he brought for the robbery before he could suppress his defensive instincts. Continue reading

Liberty and Justice For All, part 1

In a March, 2009 Tokens Radio Show interview, Brad MacLean, a former corporate lawyer who now serves as an advocate and attorney for death-row inmates, and one who opposes capital punishment, related a letter that he had once read that illustrated the reasons behind his career choice.  An article in The New Yorker had put together various arguments for and against the death penalty.  One particular argument opposing the death penalty asked the readers to consider, before supporting capital punishment, whether or not they could throw the switch for the electric chair.  A rabbi wrote a letter to the editor responding to that particular argument.  He said that after considering the horrible, heinous nature of the crimes committed by some of the murderers on death row, he had no doubt that he could enthusiastically pull the lever that would kill one of these inmates. Continue reading

Obedience: Without Being Told

Clean up your room If I had a nickel for every time this Berenstain Bears scene played out in our home growing up (only my brother didn’t usually wear pink…). “Clean your room” were probably three of the most common words from our mother’s mouth. Though, a close second would be the three words she often shouted as she held a raised wooden spoon in her right hand: “Move your hands!”

In any case, we eventually learned that if we obeyed the first three words we could avoid the second three. Not that we always did, but at least we learned cause and effect. Continue reading

Afraid of Law

A lot of people seem to have a certain distrust of, or even dislike for, law enforcement. Of course, people who get in trouble with the law have their reasons, but even “law-abiding” citizens often react negatively to the well-hidden patrolman who sits by the highway with a radar gun. Many feel somehow cheated when they see those tricky officers in their unmarked cruisers.

I think it is fear. Continue reading