Author Archives: Christopher Johnson

Capital punishment: A Liberal opposition

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Between 14 July 2020 and 16 January 2021, the United States government executed its first thirteen criminals since 2003 – in fact, this was the most people ever executed in such a short space of time by the federal government.

However, fourteen states continue to execute people on a regular basis. President Joe Biden, a devout Catholic, seeks to end the death penalty at a federal level, but this does nothing to stop states or the several other countries around the world that still employ the method.

Indeed, several high-profile cabinet members in this country, such as Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove and Home Secretary Priti Patel, have expressed the view that we should reinstate the death penalty in the United Kingdom. With all this in mind, let us remind ourselves why, as liberals, we firmly reject this development.

First of all, consider how it must feel on that day, both for the prisoner and the family. On the prisoner’s side, your last day is meticulously planned out, as revealed in this protocol from Montana. You will receive your last visitors at around 8am, and make your last phone call around 10:30. You may choose to spend all day with a chaplain, but all day the increasing knowledge of what is coming at the end will loom over you.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged , and | 12 Comments

We need to rethink our relationship with other parties

Corbyn’s out and Starmer’s in. What does it mean for us?

I feel it means a contemplation of our relationship with other parties. I feel we need to open a discussion about what happens next, even if it goes nowhere.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I think we should stand firm to our liberal values, and I certainly don’t think we should become synonymous with any other party. When a voter puts their cross in the Liberal Democrat box, they should be assured they are voting for the Liberal Democrat candidate.

Nor do I think electoral pacts are necessarily the right road to …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged and | 17 Comments
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