LaserGuy wrote: sourmìlk wrote:
In fact, just stating that is possibly the most trivially stupid point I've ever heard. Yes, thank you sourmilk, but I think they already got the memo: did you know that adolescents, on average, spend at least 23 hours a day not killing people? And you're saying you think they're qualified to keep doing that? Genius.
And yet you appeared to be suggesting that not killing somebody is as complex a decision as signing a contract.
Killing somebody is a decision that has far greater long-term irreversible consequences than signing a contract. Someone who isn't qualified to understand how a document could affect their lives probably isn't going to appreciate how something more serious will affect their lives.
Okay, but that's not the question. The question isn't whether or not a minor will grasp the scope of their punishment, I think that's rather beside the point. The question is whether or not a minor will understand how not to kill somebody.
Belial wrote:No, I'm saying it's as complex as not signing a contract.
How many contracts did you not sign today?
Decker wrote:By your logic, a four year old with a loaded gun should be tried as an adult.
I already explained why this isn't the case: while a four year old probably understands that murder is morally wrong, very young children in particular have such poor impulse control that they can't necessarily be expected to adhere to their moral sense if they don't want to. Also, don't insult me.
Heisenberg wrote:That's a bit premature. Is your argument going to be the fact that we expect 12 year-olds to not engage in sexual acts with adults is evidence that any 12 year-old who does is fully responsible? You kind of jumped from "IF A THEN B directly to EVERYONE AGREES THAT B."
I don't necessarily think that my argument applies to 12-year-olds: I'd have to observe some to see whether or not they possess the mental capacity to fit into my idea of who should be tried as an adult. But, from what I hear, deciding not to have sex with an adult is a more difficult decision than deciding not to murder one.
Heisenberg wrote: think you're confusing complexity with understanding the consequences. Understanding the consequences of a contract is not comparable to understanding the consequences of a murder. The failure of the death penalty to provide a measurable deterrant shows us that fully mature adults fail to comprehend the consequences of a murder, so expecting consequences to influence the behavior of a mentally deranged 12 year-old is outrageous.
So if the problem is that 12 year olds don't understand the scope of the punishment associated with their actions, then the logical conclusion would not be to go easier on them, but to make the punishment more harsh so it acts as a stronger deterrent, and so that the consequences are more apparently heavy to a 12-year-old.