As regular readers will know, we have been running a poll on the topic of the Death Penalty. I asked the question “Do you support the Death Penalty for certain crimes such as mass murder” and I’m closing the poll today. Those who support the motion are shown as red dots on the map, whilst those who oppose it are shown as green dots! The answer to the question on ATW is a resounding “YES”, with around 70% supporting the use of the death penalty in these special circumstances.
What intrigued me most was the way this issue is viewed either side of the Atlantic. Looking at the maps which show who voted where, I see a sea of red Stateside, with around 90% supporting the death penalty. Perhaps this is not a big surprise since the US does still use this penalty and it appears to meet with the approval of the vast majority of Americans who visit ATW, at the very least. But when I look at mainland Europe, I see a tide of green, indicating opposition to the use of the Death Penalty. It’s clear Europeans are not interested in this sanction, which is perhaps not that surprising either given the history of secular post WW2 Euroland. Looking at the UK, I note that opinion seems split about 50:50 whereas in Ireland, it reflects continental European values in opposing this sanction.
I know that polls must all be treated with suspicion but the difference in outlook on this important issue is marked between the US and Europe, and with several hundred votes now in, I thought you might be interested in the detail!