This is the first post of the New Year and I wish all of our multitudes of readers a Happy New Year.
LAM criticizes the execution of Saddam Hussein in the post below. Mr. M's degree was in philosophy and his living earned in law so he has some background to opine on this. I link to Professor Bainbridge a law professor who leans in a Thomistic direction and is generally anti-death penalty. I think Mr. M and I (and Professor Bainbridge) would agree that the presence of the Mahdi Army chanters and dancers and hecklers is an especially black mark against this execution. However, that aside I think the ten points laid out on the death penalty all argue for the rightness of Saddam's execution. There is no doubt of his crimes. He had a trial and defense (indeed lawyers from all over the world volunteered their time). Most importantly to me is the effect on society and its safety. Bainbridge notes that Saddam could escape and wreak havoc in Iraq but I have another question for LAM and any other Potpourrier: What if Baa'thist terrorists took over a school and said to release Saddam or they would kill all the children there. Do the children die or does he go free? We see this happen all the time in terrorist and drug cartel ridden states. I was once against the death penalty but am no longer for murder and especially mass murder. What risk to innocents is allowable so our fine sensibilities can let a stone cold killer live into old age cared for by the State?