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Subject:  Re: Gabrielle Giffords made me cry ... Date:  1/30/2013  11:22 PM
Author:  AdvocatusDiaboli Number:  1856573 of 1956949


Unless someone thinks this is political, it isn't. I have a problem with crime victims or families making emotional appeals to juries prior to the sentencing phase. It doesn't add anything factual to the case and so doesn't move justice forward.

Same thing here.


The problem I have with emotional appeals (especially in jury trials) is their impact on the decision about guilt or innocence.
It tends to be like: "The victim suffered so horribly, someone has to pay - and here we have the defendant" and then you end up with an absolutely horrendous wrongful conviction rate.

I don't see anything wrong with emotional appeals in sentencing, though, or in the case of deciding about gun policy.
Crimes cause human suffering, and the easy availability of guns causes death, injury and suffering on a massive scale, and reading out dry statistics doesn't give you an understanding of the real human impact.

I think it is absolutely vital that politicians (and their supporters) every once in a while face those whose lives their policies have destroyed. If a politician is not able to do that and say (at least silently, to himself): "I am sorry for the pain and the loss I have caused you, and I feel for those whose lives are going to be destroyed in the future by the 2nd amendment, but I think that overall it is for the best" - if a politician is not able to say that, then maybe he should rethink his position.
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