I Choose the Red Pill…. err…. Bracelet

Which one will you go with?


  1. Green dot. Don’t get me wrong, if someone to harm, let alone kill, my wife or kids, I would personally kill them quite brutally if given 5 minutes alone, preferably drawing it out as to have the last breath escape at the 4 minute 59 second mark. But the collective “we” is supposed to be more cool headed than the individual “me.” And if we’re going to teach our children that it’s wrong to kill, then we should walk the walk.

    But, just going off on a tangent here, rather than letting the deceased pre-decide, why not give the families their 5 minutes with no legal repercussions for whatever might happen. No gun, no knife, no syringe, no rock — if they want to kill they have to do it with their bare hands and within the 5 minute deadline.

  2. Ryan Morgan says:

    “And if we’re going to teach our children that it’s wrong to kill, then we should walk the walk.”

    I don’t have kids, but I plan to some day, and when I do, I do not plan on teaching them that killing is wrong. Killing can be either moral or immoral. Soldiers often engage in moral killing. So does the father who shoots the man who attacks his family. And I also happen to believe that killing the man who murdered an innocent is morally defensible as well. So I will teach my children that murder, not killing, is evil (And for what it is worth, the correct English translation of the Hebrew in the 10 Commandments is “thou shalt not murder”, not “thou shalt not kill”).

  3. “thou shalt not murder”

    Well THAT would really open it up to interpretation. Since murder is “unlawful killing” the 6th would vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, would it not? For example, here in the U.S. it would be inappropriate to refer to abortion as murder, and it would not be considered a violation of the Commandments.

  4. Randy in Richmond says:

    You make a convincing argument but there is a fallacy in your logic. It evolves around the key word, “inappropriate”. Yes, it would be “inappropriate” to refer to abortion as murder in a legal sense–but not illegal to do so. This is akin to a conscientious objector stating he is against killing of any form–which he can say but not enforce. If the family in Connecticut had been true conscientious objectors, the surviving father/husband could not have stopped the state (any state) from seeking the death penalty. He could have objected on moral, religious, whatever grounds but ultimately an execution of the murderer(s) could take place.

    Murder is always killing but killing is not always murder.

    In the case of abortion one can say it is murder to take the life of an unborn fetus if one believes life begans at conception. And it is murder to that person, but not to the law. In the same way it is a violation of the Commandments to have sex with a married person (not your spouse), to use the phrase G**Damn, to not honor one’s parents, etc. Thus it is still a violation of the 6th Commandment to abort a fetus if one believes life begins at conception. But it is not illegal to commit these acts. There is no requirement to have religious or moral beliefs parallel our codified system. But it can be inappropriate not to do so.

    If I strongly oppose driving 75mph because of safety, enviromental, or whatever reasons, and I ride to Disney World with you and you do drive at that speed, it does not diminish my belief system or objections while neither is it illegal for me to ride with you. Again , it would be inappropriate-not illegal-to me.

  5. Yeah, so the raped and stabbed woman gets the right to choose the death of her murderer but if she lives through it and gets pregnant she has a moral responsibility to keep the kid because it’s a gift from God.

  6. Randy in Richmond says:

    If the stabbing had killed the pregnant woman’s unborn baby and not her, did he commit murder?

    Actually, I know the answer. So does Scott Peterson, among many others.

  7. I envy religious types in an odd sort of way. You have the hard decisions made for you and just need play along. As an atheist, I have no such guide. Obviously, killing and 17-year-old child is wrong. On the flip side, legal penalty for the ol’ spilling-O’-the-seed seems ridiculous to me as well. So the point where life merits protection falls somewhere in between. There are several points which could make sense — fertilization, implantation, heartbeat, viability, birth. It’s just a matter of society coming to an agreement as to which is legal. But when one faction is closed to compromise, conflict is inescapable.

    And don’t tell me no one is advocating seed-icide. There are many out there that would welcome such scripturea. (Hey, did I coin a phrase? Get it. Mix of Scripture and Sharia? Mark you clocks.)

  8. Murder is unjust killing, not unlawful killing. We can say Cain murdered Abel. It was murder, even though there was no laws on the books at that particular point in time. The same act would still be murder, no matter what time or jurisdiction it occurred in.

  9. Webster: The offense of killing a human being with malice prepense or aforethought

    Merriam-Webster: the crime of unlawfully killing a person especially with malice aforethought

    Princeton Wordnet: unlawful premeditated killing of a human being by a human being

    Cambridge: the crime of intentionally killing a person

    Oxford: the unlawful premeditated killing of one human being by another

    dictionary.com: the killing of another human being under conditions specifically covered in law.

    Wikipedia: the unlawful killing, with malice aforethought, of another human

    The FreeDictionary.com: The unlawful killing of one human by another, especially with premeditated malice.

    I’m sensing a trend.

  10. Honestly, I don’t much care what the legal definition of murder is… gaining moral clarity on the issue is far more important. The commandment in the Bible forbids unjustly taking another human life. There is a moral chasm between what American soldiers did to Nazi soldiers and what a hitman does for pay. There is a moral chasm between the murderer’s act and act of a society that takes the life of the murderer out of regard for the life of the innocent who was slain. If you can’t see that, I feel bad for you.

    The other key point that your definitions do point out is that “killing” can refer to animals as well, but “murder” refers to a human. That’s another thing that is lost by saying “Thou shalt not kill”…. anyone who honestly believes God said THAT had better be a vegetarian.

  11. “If the stabbing had killed the pregnant woman’s unborn baby and not her, did he commit murder?”

    Yes. And executing the child’s murderer is also unjust. My position is morally consistant.

  12. Why do you think executing a murderer is unjust? So Bob murders Sara, but Bob still gets to go on living and enjoying many of the joys of life that (because of him) Sara will never get to experience for even on more second. I think that is not only unjust, but also extremely cruel to the memory of Sara and Sara’s family. Why am I wrong?

  13. Randy in Richmond says:

    It’s good to know we are on the same side of the abortion issue, Strupp.

  14. What the Hell. If we’re going to engage in Death Wish-style revenge fantasies, why have laws at all. Let’s just let people put on a tiger-striped bracelet that let’s them execute anyone who doesn’t use turn signals in traffic and be done with it.

    Te reason we don’t let victims decide the punishment is pretty clear in the comment thread. “An eye for an eye leaves everyone blind.”

  15. Ryan Morgan says:

    Actually, “an eye for an eye” was the greatest advance in morality in human history.

    Prior to that, the idea was that if someone from your clan murders someone from my clan, then we attack and murder several people from your clan. It is an endless cycle.

    An eye for an eye teaches that the person(s) who commits an offense, not their family or clan, will be held accountable for that offense. So if you murder me, you forfeit your own life and that’s the end of it. No endless clan violence back and forth as was always commonplace (and still is in the parts of the world least touched by biblical ethics, including gangs right here in the US).

    “An eye for an eye leaves the guilty punished and the innocent protected” would be a much more apt summary of the practical effect of that phrase in human history.