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Essays on Issues, Ideas and Reflections on the Times. Published now and
then. Opinions pro or con are welcome.


North Miami Beach, FL 12-03-2005
A.H. Schectman

A ban on executions is no option.  A ban on war is no option.  We keep on killing for there are a lot of options in when, how and where this will be done.  No one keeps track on why we kill.  We kill as a part of our life.

A ban on executions is no option for the folks who send our young people to war.  Both the convict and the conscript are meat for the abattoirs in prisons and on the killing fields in Iraq and Afghanistan.  In this life you learn to suspend disbelief when you enter the world of death.

Let me tell you why I have a problem with cavalier attitudes to the death penalty either for exacting revenge for wrongful death or high crimes and misdemeanors.  First, there are belief systems that state, unequivocally; there is a life after death.   This is something planted by the Church in the minds of little children when they first begin to talk.  Then there are the folks who believe that no matter how or under what circumstances, those who die do not really die but enter an afterlife, or receive their reward and/or punishment.  There is a possibility in this system of belief that some will go down to hell (these are bad people who must repent and be forgiven their sins) or go to heaven to join Jesus or 72 Virgins.

In this 21st Century such beliefs continue to control the options facing all of us.  I know for a fact that I do not deserve either destination.  I know for a fact that when I stop living, (I will not “pass over”) my life will end.  I have no hope or belief in an afterlife which is an oxymoron just for starters.

 I will repeat what I have said for almost all my life since learning the interesting belief in reincarnation:  If it is true I would like to return smart, rich, good looking and in an executive capacity.

We really have few options – most of these having to do with our choices in how we will spend our time which is fixed mostly by heredity and the possibility we will cross the street corner when the light is against us.  You live and then you die.  The horror of a society killing off its members in either retribution or war has not touched the minds of those persuaded that life after death IS an option. These are the kinds of people who cannot understand the possibility of pandemics of Flu or plagues that are far more efficient killers than all the prisons and armies we are able to produce each generation.  Think about the options available to us.  We could spend our time in war creating chaos the wasting resources of the people who have created wonders in how to live in an uncertain world. Or, we could create and make our world better and give up the killing of innocents and even those who are guilty. What about Saddam?  What about Osama?  What about G.W. Bush?




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