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Vigilante Justice

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
There are so many cases where the perpetrator of a particularly hienous offence goes scott-free due to the breakdown of the very rules that are put in place to punish the person, that one has to wonder if there is any merit in considering the institution of a grass-roots level of dispensing proper justice.

I am particularly disturbed when so many who harm children manage to evade justice.

Any thoughts on the subject ? ?

Leonard.
post #2 of 16
There is a fabulous book/movie by John Grisham called "A Time To Kill" that tackles this very topic.
post #3 of 16
But who is to sit on this board of judges?
Are we speaking of 12 like minded individuals with the same agenda in a basement somewhere?
That is horrifying to me.

What if it was you whom they thought deserved of a lynching?

The reason I have a problem with this is that this is the same mentality behind the
KKK mob mentality.

These are dangerous thoughts.
post #4 of 16
I agree, that's why I didn't give my opinion on this.
If I had a family member who was murdered, raped, etc., yes, the temptation would definitely be there to take the law into my own hands. However, once we allow that to start, it opens up the gates for complete anarchy.
post #5 of 16
Vigilante "justice" does not solve any problems and often generates more problems.

1) Courts are not reality shows based on popular opinion
History have shown that there are many times when the public's overwhealmingly certainty of a person's guilt or innocence turned out to be wrong.

2) "Half Truth"
Many cases last for a significant period of time yet the reporting in the media of the case can often be captured in a few pages or one article. There are times where the media fails to report on a certain point because of its complexity or oversimplify it and as a result the true meaning is lost.

4) "Technicality"
A term often used by the general public to describe some law that apparently results in someone they think is guilty as hell to walk free. It was once remarked that all laws are technical points. The same rule that prevents the conviction of someone the public thinks is guilty could may well be the same rule that prevents a person whom the public thinks is innocent or who should not be convicted because of certain circumstances. So how does one differentiate between the both of them? One cannot possibly adopt a position whereby the decision of a case is based on public opinion.

5) Reform
In connection with the above point, a better way to move forward could be to reform the particular law in question.

6) "Justified?"
If there is vigilantism then who is to decide whether was a particular piece of action is truly justified. What if an act of vigilantism later proves to be directed at the wrong person? At what percentage level of public opinion is necessary before one can use vigilantism. How do we gauge public opinion, through polls or do we vote on it in a ballot box? Is the vote supposed to be country, state or national? What if the particular area happens to have a large majority of people of the opinion that certain minority should be exterminated because they believe that these minorities are evil and caused all the crimes in the area?

7) Final Point
One final point is that one needs to define vigilantism. Taking the law into one's hands and doing violence because they feel such recourse is justified covers many things. It may range from the traditional view of it relating to only specific individuals and cases to acts of terrorism.
post #6 of 16
Who is going to be appointed God (this is the fellow making the decision to carry out the vigilante act) and how does "God" get appointed and by whom?

How many innocent people in our history have been wrongly killed/lynched/etc. by someone or some group that has accused them of being guilty without the evidence to back them up or been given false information by a spiteful person?

Some folks just shouldn't have too much power - they have no idea how to handle it.
post #7 of 16
This thread reminds me of Dennis Lehane's "Mystic River".
post #8 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by winwin
There are so many cases where the perpetrator of a particularly hienous offence goes scott-free due to the breakdown of the very rules that are put in place to punish the person, that one has to wonder if there is any merit in considering the institution of a grass-roots level of dispensing proper justice.

I am particularly disturbed when so many who harm children manage to evade justice.

Any thoughts on the subject ? ?

Leonard.
Many thoughts. Many unpleasant thoughts. Probably best for me to stay quiet on this one..
post #9 of 16
I am not for a self appointed group deciding that someone should be dealt with in a particular manner because they think the courts did not do their job in punishing the offenders, for whatever reason.
I do, however, understand how a distraught parent or spouse might act alone in punishing someone that committed a heinous crime on their loved ones.
When my daughter was threatened, and I percieved her to be in great danger since the police would not do anything about the person that threatened her, I went to his house, pulled him out his front door, and gave him the beating of his life with a pick handle. I then called the police myself, and waited for them. It turned out I was correct in his threats, and his illegal activities. He was arrested for several drug related charges, and possession of several pipe bombs, and material to make more. For some reason the cops thought I just wanted him not to date my daughter, and was telling then things that were not true. My daughter found out about his activities, and when she broke up with him, he kept threatening her, afraid tht she would tell. She was afraid, so she told me. If he would have just left her alone, she would have never said a word. I tried talking to him, but he thought he was so cool and scary that I was nothing to worry about. It was the only way I could get the police involved and prove to him that I was serious that he needed to leave my then 15 year old daughter alone. He lied about his age to her, he was really 20, not the 17 he had told her.
No charges were pressed against me, but if they had been, I was prepared to accept the consequences. Sometimes you just have to do what you feel is right, legal or not.
post #10 of 16
that's awesome. I would have done the same thing. What you did probably saved some lives, as he was probably preparing to use those pipe bombs!


Quote:
Originally Posted by krazy kat2
I am not for a self appointed group deciding that someone should be dealt with in a particular manner because they think the courts did not do their job in punishing the offenders, for whatever reason.
I do, however, understand how a distraught parent or spouse might act alone in punishing someone that committed a heinous crime on their loved ones.
When my daughter was threatened, and I percieved her to be in great danger since the police would not do anything about the person that threatened her, I went to his house, pulled him out his front door, and gave him the beating of his life with a pick handle. I then called the police myself, and waited for them. It turned out I was correct in his threats, and his illegal activities. He was arrested for several drug related charges, and possession of several pipe bombs, and material to make more. For some reason the cops thought I just wanted him not to date my daughter, and was telling then things that were not true. My daughter found out about his activities, and when she broke up with him, he kept threatening her, afraid tht she would tell. She was afraid, so she told me. If he would have just left her alone, she would have never said a word. I tried talking to him, but he thought he was so cool and scary that I was nothing to worry about. It was the only way I could get the police involved and prove to him that I was serious that he needed to leave my then 15 year old daughter alone. He lied about his age to her, he was really 20, not the 17 he had told her.
No charges were pressed against me, but if they had been, I was prepared to accept the consequences. Sometimes you just have to do what you feel is right, legal or not.
post #11 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by krazy kat2
I am not for a self appointed group deciding that someone should be dealt with in a particular manner because they think the courts did not do their job in punishing the offenders, for whatever reason.
I do, however, understand how a distraught parent or spouse might act alone in punishing someone that committed a heinous crime on their loved ones.
When my daughter was threatened, and I percieved her to be in great danger since the police would not do anything about the person that threatened her, I went to his house, pulled him out his front door, and gave him the beating of his life with a pick handle. I then called the police myself, and waited for them. It turned out I was correct in his threats, and his illegal activities. He was arrested for several drug related charges, and possession of several pipe bombs, and material to make more. For some reason the cops thought I just wanted him not to date my daughter, and was telling then things that were not true. My daughter found out about his activities, and when she broke up with him, he kept threatening her, afraid tht she would tell. She was afraid, so she told me. If he would have just left her alone, she would have never said a word. I tried talking to him, but he thought he was so cool and scary that I was nothing to worry about. It was the only way I could get the police involved and prove to him that I was serious that he needed to leave my then 15 year old daughter alone. He lied about his age to her, he was really 20, not the 17 he had told her.
No charges were pressed against me, but if they had been, I was prepared to accept the consequences. Sometimes you just have to do what you feel is right, legal or not.
Sounds like somebody needed to teach that punk a lesson.
Good for you!!!

I know of a murder case in/around Melbourne, FL / Brevard County, where a woman killed her "biker boyfriend" when she claimed he did some thing no one but her knows if it is true. Shot him and tried to get someone to help her get rid of his body. Then when no one would get involved, eventually the police showed up and found his body in the house, dead for 2-3 days.
There were rumors of vigilante justice for him, but nothing has happened.
post #12 of 16
Anyone here familiear with The Onion? It's a fake news satire, and it just so happens that the current "Headline Story" on theonion.com is about vigilante justice. Warning: the site is considered abrasive by some, both because satire isn't their thing and because it is often black humor. Also, a lot of the little ads on the sides of the site are . . . intended for a young male audience. However, if that doesn't bother you, you might check out the vigilante justice story.
post #13 of 16
There ARE cases of women who have been abused by their partners over a long period of time who have killed their partners and been found not guilty in court. Vigilante justice? Nope. Battered Women's Syndrome. It's considered a form of PTSD and, if it's not yet in the DSM-IV, it will be soon. I've seen clients who suffer from this- it is real.
post #14 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by ugaimes
There ARE cases of women who have been abused by their partners over a long period of time who have killed their partners and been found not guilty in court. Vigilante justice? Nope. Battered Women's Syndrome. It's considered a form of PTSD and, if it's not yet in the DSM-IV, it will be soon. I've seen clients who suffer from this- it is real.
No, killing abother due to suffering from battered women syndrome is not vigilantism. If it is used, it usually tagged onto other defenses such as mental capacity. It may be considered as vigilantism if the neighbor comes over and kills the abuser but not the person who is abused.

Another point. One should avoid using the term vigilante "justice" since it assumes justice is achieved through acts of vigilantism.
post #15 of 16
Whenever I hear about horrible crimes commited and no one ever paying for them I always hope there really is such thing as judgement and Hell (Sorry I can't think of another word for it in this context.) in the next life. At any rate, I do believe that sooner or later they get what is coming to them one way or another.
post #16 of 16
Thread Starter 
Gray Kitten, the concept of Vigilante Justice is that they get it sooner, rather than later.

Leonard.
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