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To question my long held beliefs against capital punishment after what happened to Alesha MacPhail

(350 Posts)
Noteventhebirdsareupyet Sat 23-Mar-19 08:42:50

Hi all,

I have recently been really shaken by the Alesha MacPhailcase and possibly because I now have a tiny daughter of my own, I am feeling really affected by what has happened.

I have always had reasonably strong views against capital punishment and have often argued that:

No one has the right to take the life of another.

When capital punishment is lawful, mistakes are made and innocent people get killed.

We are supposedly a civilised society.

Often offenders were victims first and therefore need empathy and have been failed by the system.....

However I am now shocked to find myself thinking that if a person can do the things that Aaron Campbell has done to a tiny, innocent girl and show absolutely no remorse, then perhaps instead of spending hundreds of thousands of pounds of taxpayers money keeping him incarcerated and then putting communities at risk upon his release, maybe we as a society should say that this person is intrinsically evil and has no place among us.

I honestly never imagined myself feeling like this and maybe it is because I am now a mother that I do. Surely people like him don't deserve a second chance and should be killed before they ruin more lives.

Am I being unreasonable to feel like this? Has anyone else had a turning point like me? I feel that my family and friends would be a bit shocked to hear me say "let's kill dangerous criminals" but this incident has had a profound effect on my outlook and I feel like I can't voice my opinions out loud.

Nicknacky Sat 23-Mar-19 09:09:03

Wouldn’t have been executed!!

OwlinaTree Sat 23-Mar-19 09:09:04

Is that really possible though cerseil?

feelingverylazytoday Sat 23-Mar-19 09:10:09

I have a feeling that this person will take his own life in a few years time, if he has the means to do it. Human life holds no intrinsic value for him and life inside will be very dull with little opportunity for thrills. I think the need for kicks and excjtement is what drives him. I actually agree with you, OP. some people should be humanly 'put down' for the good of society.

SerenDippitty Sat 23-Mar-19 09:10:30

There is clearly something very very wrong with Campbell. I doubt he will ever be released.

I am still opposed to capital punishment and always will be.

Cerseilannisterinthesnow Sat 23-Mar-19 09:10:46

That’s what was found by the psychiatrists in the background reports

Whatsername7 Sat 23-Mar-19 09:11:00

Your feelings are primal and completely normal if you have just given birth. Your brain is hardwired to protect your baby and the hormones that are flooding your system are designed to help you feel protective of your baby, which makes horrific events such as this feel almost personal, despite you not knowing the poor little girl or the evil bastard who murdered her. That is why some women suffering from postnatal depression have anxiety around the health and well being of their baby, even if the feel they have no bond to the baby. The fact that the non hormonal, more rational you is against capital punishment means these feelings feel confusing and alien to you, and, they will change as your hormones settle and your baby grows.
The monster who did this should rot in a cell for the rest of his life. He will not get an easy ride from the other prisoners. The saddest part is, no matter how he suffers, nothing will bring back that little girl.

Patroclus Sat 23-Mar-19 09:11:01

16 isnt he? wouldnt have been executed anyway

Skittlesss Sat 23-Mar-19 09:11:10

I think when a child murders another child it’s so shocking and the public reacts in a more emotive way than when an adult is the murderer.

Haz1516 Sat 23-Mar-19 09:12:40

I absolutely agree. I followed the case and it brought me to tears. Especially the part where he apparently took her from her bed, and as she woke up he told her he was a friend of her dad's and have her a coat to keep her warm. The injuries the girl received were worse than anything the pathologist had ever seen. He smiled at the mother during the sentencing and apparently told a social worker that he felt like laughing during the trial. He had a total lack of remorse.

I used to really strongly feel that a life for a life was totally wrong and a terrible marker on the idea of being 'civilised'. But I think it's since becoming a mother myself that it's changed, and the idea that we are paying to keep people like this alive and fed disgusts me. The idea that people like him even exist terrifies me. He will never give anything positive back to society.

Noteventhebirdsareupyet Sat 23-Mar-19 09:13:05

Why do people think he will never be released when Robert Thompson and Jon Venables were out aged 18 with new identities? Venebles then went on to re-offend.

Maybe I don't care about his remorselessness, maybe I just think that anyone capable of doing this should be killed. I really don't know anymore. Perhaps having worked in prisons few times as a researcher for advocacy services and seeing how comfortable the lives of quite serious offenders can be has made me feel that people who spend "life" in prison don't have it too bad in this country.

I do take your points though and remind myself that even one person being mistakenly killed by the state is a horrendous thought.

OwlinaTree Sat 23-Mar-19 09:13:35

It's not saying all people with mental health issues are capable of murder though is it? There are many many different ways mental health can affect people. People with depression or eating disorders can be described as having a mental health condition. That doesn't mean they are going to hurt others.

SerenDippitty Sat 23-Mar-19 09:13:48

And for the posters who are mentioning mental health, Lord Matthews did pass comment that he has no mental health conditions.

Doesn’t mean he doesn’t have a personality disorder. His lack of empathy would seem to suggest he does.

SilverySurfer Sat 23-Mar-19 09:14:01

As terrible as any case is, I'm totally against capital punishment but the person should remain in prison for life.

Sitdownstandup Sat 23-Mar-19 09:14:25

Much as I'm opposed to the death penalty and also really to prison at all for more minor crimes (it doesn't work and just wastes money) I do think we need to be more accepting that some people are just a danger to the public and shouldn't be released. Mick Philpott, for example, by the time he killed his kids he'd done enough that if it were up to me he'd have been in prison for life. After the first attempted murder conviction, I don't think he should have been out again after the next violent assault, and the criminal justice system needs to reflect this. People with that type of offence pattern.

echt Sat 23-Mar-19 09:15:19

Why do people think he will never be released when Robert Thompson and Jon Venables were out aged 18 with new identities?

They were children. Aaron Campbell isn't.

Cherylshaw Sat 23-Mar-19 09:16:25

I believe in corporal punishment, if it is 100% proven they are guilty. I disagree with some of the reports that blame cannabis and video games for turning him into a killer. His lack of guilt and remorse, no empathy and humorous regarding his trial make it look like he is a psychopath. I feel like the change in allowing his identity to be known was a step forward and wish that was the case with Jamie Bulger's killers, we should know what they look like and where they are

Nicknacky Sat 23-Mar-19 09:16:31

Op, perhaps listen to the judges sentencing?

There is no point comparing it to James Bulger. And there are less high profile offenders in Scotland that will never be released, it’s not guaranteed he will get out.

Sitdownstandup Sat 23-Mar-19 09:17:27

He is still a child, but there's a big difference between 16-17 years and 10. That is obviously going to make a difference in terms of assessment of culpability.

Cherylshaw Sat 23-Mar-19 09:18:49

Robert Thomson and John Venables should never have had there identity hidden, they should have lived with the consequences of what they had done

Deadbydaylight Sat 23-Mar-19 09:18:53

Doesn’t mean he doesn’t have a personality disorder. His lack of empathy would seem to suggest he does.

Lack of empathy would suggest psychopath. The impulsivity of the kill too. But only traits, I doubt he scores very high on the test as it would have been mentioned.

He has 27 years minimum then further testing to be considered for release. Like Sutcliffe. It's unlikely he will pass those tests. They may rig the tests a bit I imagine, but I'm happy to turn a blind eye to that to keep people like that behind bars.

PositiveDiscipline Sat 23-Mar-19 09:19:20

I don't think it is realistic to bring back CP for one reason. That is, we would be hanging someone (or whatever) every day of the week.

Seriously, look at how many people have been killed since 01 Jan. There are 40 stabbings alone.

More importantly I think we as a nation need to do something very drastic to stop the constant abuse, violence and murder by MEN which happens nearly every day of the week.

I've lived in 4 other countries and I never saw such abuse and violence as I do here. It did happen, but very rarely.

Drogosnextwife Sat 23-Mar-19 09:20:52

I agree with everything Graphista said. I'm also close by and was actually on the Isle of Bute a week after this happened to that poor little girl, it was tragic but I still don't believe that the death penalty is the best punishment. I think that prison life needs to be taken back in time a little.

Nicknacky Sat 23-Mar-19 09:21:04

Dead Lord Matthews also commented that he had psychopathic traits

Inliverpool1 Sat 23-Mar-19 09:22:03

Ruth Ellis smiles as the death penalty was read out apparently. I honestly don’t think you can read stuff into his actions or reactions at this stage. He should never be released though

Inliverpool1 Sat 23-Mar-19 09:23:51

Those wanting prison life to be harsher, have you read the research that punishment simply doesn’t work, in any form. Your child doesn’t stop being naughty because you smack or tell them off. Criminals stop being criminals when they decide not as a result of punishment

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