Mudcat Café message #3645094 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #155090   Message #3645094
Posted By: MGMĚLion
25-Jul-14 - 04:39 AM
Thread Name: BS: USA sliding into depravity (botched execution)
Subject: RE: BS: USA sliding into depravity (botched execution)
As I always chip in when this topic come up [which is one on which I have that disadvantage I so often labour under of seeing both sides & so feeling a bit helpless and ineffectual with regard to such] --

Both emotionally and semantically, it is foolish to use terms emotively which have more precise meanings: in particular, in re this topic, "civilised" & "barbaric". The latter [or its variant 'barbarian'] was the term used by the Romans for those not within their 'civilised' jurisdiction. Now, seriously, can anyone deny that the Romans, along with the ancient Athenians and Thebans and Spartans, & the ancient orientals like Japanese, Chinese, Indians &c, were all highly 'civilised' within any reasonable and rational meaning of the term? Yet they all went on judicially executing criminals all the time. Same considerations apply to mediŠval Europe &c. It is, in fact, only, at most, within the last couple of centuries that such legal deterrents were even questioned by any civilised nations. Can you really denounce the whole of history before about mid-C19 as relating to the "uncivilised"?

My point, to reiterate, is that terms like "civilised" & "barbaric" in this context are so imprecise as to be liable to confuse, rather than clarify, the issues; and so are best avoided if one expects one's posts to carry any conviction or intellectual respectability.