A Conversation for Joe Hill - Murderer or Martyr?

Joe Hill

Post 1

Someone named Tim

The general case for execution cannot be made.You have the inevitable "oops" problem. Any system will from time to time err. That said, it is foolhardy to endorse a system where such errors cannot be attenuated. You cannot give a man back his imprisoned time, but a wrongfully taken life is a greater evil. Also, if men are executed for murder, what is then when society does the same thing (wrongfully executes someone) ? A double standard is at work here.

I cannot begin to care about Joe Hill. He lived a century before my time and the circumstances of his case affect only music and folklore of which I am uninterested.

Joe Hill

Post 2


I think that should be "in which I am not interested" but perhaps you are not interested in the niceties of the language, either.

with all due respect, I find it surprising that someone not interested in something would waste any time pointing that out, thus contributing nothing but a poor self-image.

There are many angles to approach the Joe Hill story. Let me mention a couple that have occurred to me.

Gary Gilmore, executed in 1977 in Salt Lake, was also 36, if Joe Hill was indeed born in 1879.

Their two deaths will always be tied together for me: the flimsy evidence used to kill a man in 1915 and the return to the death penalty in 1977 in the US.

The two, in a sense, both asked for it. Gilmore demanded to be shot and made a small fortune out of the operation. Joe Hill refused to produce any evidence that would save himself or incriminate anyone else.

Nobody came forth to save Joe while those around Gary were looking for stays up to the moment he was shot.

How did an adult Swedish immigrant so quickly become such a competent composer in English, which seems to have been a late and very much a second language for him?

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