December 12, 2005


It's truly amazing that we live in a world in which Arnold Schwarzenegger actually has the power over life and death. And by amazing I mean really fucking scary.

Posted by Chris at December 12, 2005 03:48 PM

Is it scary that ARNOLD has power over life and death for convicted criminals or is it scary that any elected government figure have that power? just curious...

Posted by: linda at December 12, 2005 03:58 PM

What is it with the U.S. of A and the penchant for ex-actor politicians? That's scary....

Posted by: DaFFy at December 12, 2005 04:01 PM

I don't really know what to think about all this. We don't have the death penalty here. And actors being politicians? Never happened here. Funny how 2 western countries be so different.

Posted by: Sweety at December 12, 2005 04:07 PM

Yes, it is scary. That was a lose-lose proposition though, in my humble opinion. I say we get rid of the death penalty all together and then we won't have to put our "uniquely qualified" elected officials in that position.

Culture of life, my ass.

Posted by: Ms. Q at December 12, 2005 04:10 PM

Tell me about it... just got a call from my brother, who's super pissed at the system (he's been working for People of Faith against the Death Penalty)... and feels like none of our politicians are listening to the people. Yes, it's quite scary that Kindergarten Cop can and has decided to kill someone.

Posted by: Corinne at December 12, 2005 04:45 PM

Every governor and president has that power and they have had it as long as there have been governors and presidents. I'm more shocked at the ones who grew up in less of a spotlight than this guy.


Posted by: Jef at December 12, 2005 04:51 PM

Yeah it's weird I JUST read the headline before coming over here. I don't know how I feel about it, the death penalty is a tricky thing. However I don't think Ah-nold should get to have a say, it seems biased, he is the Terminator! Tookie never had a chance.

Posted by: Kate at December 12, 2005 04:56 PM

Re: Arnold Schwarzenegger having that power, here is one of my favorite quotes from the documentary "Rattle & Hum": "Only in America."

Said with a nice Irish accent, if you please.

Posted by: Alison at December 12, 2005 05:18 PM

A lot of people don't agree with me, but I believe only our Creator has the right to decide if someone should live or die. That's a big damn responsibility if you ask me; and certainly not for a big dumb actor body-builder politician to decide. (Did I say actor?) Or any one of us.

Posted by: JuJu's Mom at December 12, 2005 05:20 PM

That is too sad.

Posted by: ava at December 12, 2005 05:31 PM

I agree that AS determining anyone's fate is a little unsettling, but to his credit, it seemed as though his main reason for denying clemency was that he felt that there wasn't compelling reason to take the decision out of the hands of the jury (and while the jury/judicial system may have its own issues, I maintain that I'd rather have my peers deciding my fate than a politician). In any case, I don't envy his job today at all.

Posted by: susannah at December 12, 2005 08:40 PM

Interesting. I thought he'd go ahead and intervene since there were so many people protesting for Williams to get life in prison instead.
Seems that today the polititians are only concerned with votes, so they're afraid to make bold decisions because they could offend the voting population.

What I don't understand is how Williams can claim that he's anti-gang and put on a show of doing things to promote that, but not help authorities by giving them valuable info to help bring down the gangs. To me, that sort of cancels out his "good" deeds. If he was really anti-gang, he'd do everything in his power to help. That's JMO.

Posted by: Kitty at December 12, 2005 09:19 PM

What's really fucking scary is that, in this day and age, we (and by "we", I mean "the US and a number of other nations in this world") still see fit to put people to death. Seems a little middle ages to me.

Posted by: Jen at December 12, 2005 10:05 PM


Posted by: Sheryl at December 12, 2005 10:22 PM

I agree. It is scary. The first time I felt happy to have moved out of California was when they voted that man into office. I just don't understand the choice. Here is a man who is doing something good with his life finally. No, I don't think he should walk free, but keep him alive so he can continue doing the great work he has done. I just don't get it! Call me naive.

Posted by: Nicole at December 12, 2005 10:43 PM

It's worse that Arnold used to pump iron with the dude in Venice during the 70s!

Posted by: Chris at December 12, 2005 11:20 PM

All politicians are actors. Arnold is no different than any governor is this say to stay an execution. I don't think Tookie deserves to live because he's "nicer" now. He killed 4 people and was instrumental in the killings and the despicable livelihood of those thugs who in his name killed others. If we let Tookie live we'd have to a) house him till the day he dies, and those on death row cost us more than your typical prison inmates. B.) our courts would be inundated with those in prison who've "gotten religion."

I'm for the death penalty. I think Tookie has cost us far too much already, monetarily and socially.

Posted by: Michele at December 12, 2005 11:47 PM

I would like to see that fat arrogant bastard sit down with Tookie's family over a cup of coffee and explain why he felt compelled to not use his power to spare the life of their loved one. It is f-ing disgusting and I am embarassed to live in this country today.

Posted by: Meghan at December 13, 2005 09:49 AM

Hi there. I've been reading for awhile now (you are a great writer!) & I had to de-lurk to ask you for further explanation on your comment as I am just curious (and I'm by no means trying to debate whether the death penalty is right or wrong. Personally, I'm not sure how I feel about the death penalty, but I do feel life in prison without parole is a worse sentence.):
Wasn't it the jury that convicted him that had the power over his life or death, not Arnold? Did you mean that the govener should not have the power to change a jury's decision? Or was it more of a dig at Arnold not granting him clemancy?
Personally, I think it would have been wrong for Arnold to change the jury's decision. Even though the system isn't perfect, it's better than a lot of other systems out there. From my point of view the fact that "x" number of courts have reviewed the case & have upheld it says something to me. In my opinion, every person on death row is going to say they have changed and should not be put to death. Just because he wrote some childrens books and spoke out against gangs changes what he did? The fact that he wouldn't provide information to the authorites about the gang says a lot to me.

Anyways, I really enjoy your site and outlook on life. Oh, and Mia and Beth are beautiful!

Posted by: Carley at December 13, 2005 11:34 AM

The death penalty stinks, too many innocent people have been "murdered" by it. I don't know if the man was guilty or innocent , but it's the system that needs to be changed. That Mr. Arnie even has a say is a freakin' joke and I hope those who voted him in can live with themselves. (the sad thing is possibly/maybe they agree with the asshat)

Oh, Canada.....!!

Posted by: englishthorn at December 13, 2005 12:02 PM

Michelle - there's a lot more people on mandatory drug "three strikes rules" clogging up the prison system than murderers. Who ever decided to make laws like baseball analogies anyway? No sense. And the logic that killing criminals somehow thins the herd is frankly disgusting.

Death is crushing and awful. It's crushing when people die or are murdered senselessly or with full understanding. What Tookie did should keep him in jail for the rest of his life. But I don't think 12 imperfect people should have the right to put another human being to death. I also think that Arnold is making a rotten decision.

Posted by: Sepra at December 13, 2005 12:37 PM

Well, my tree has the stupid dove on the top, and that only because it was the one thing that would end my four-year-old's ninety minute tantrun about the time-space continuum.

Train 'em young, folks. You can't turn back time, and whining doesn't help.

Posted by: mindy at December 13, 2005 09:35 PM