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The supreme analogy for R. M. Lamb in his death penalty case

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  • Author: Richard Michael Lamb


I have Argued President Abraham Lincoln (USA) who defended the 19th century union in North America would support now England and Wales in leaving the EU. He would recognise the liberty for us English and Welsh in seceding from this EU, as he defended freedom by maintaining the integrity of this union in the American Civil War (1860s) and defeating the Confederacy. Lincoln strongly opposed the slavery carried on in the Southern States of the United States of America at this epoch.


How do I develop this analogy? The American Civil War, so ferocious and bloody, turned on the issue of the right of the Southern States to sustain the slavery of black people in their plantations. This was the live issue at the heart of the secession by the south which lead directly and quickly to the bloodshed and then defeat for the Southern cause. After a series of battles won by General Robert. E. Lee for the confederacy came the all-important “drawn” Gettysburg engagement- still lost by the Confederate Army due to the terrible unsustainable loss of life on their side. They had no manpower or will left to fight on. The stuffing had been knocked out of this Confederacy finally in this battle.


Thus no one will go to war without good reason, certainly not in the 1860’s North America, the south responded to those against slavery (abolitionists) by its own apologist defending their way of life based on the enslavement of the Black man. This was a real battle of ideas (1850’s to 1860’s) in the United States. Who won the moral debate? The abolitionists (against slavery) won hands down. Where it mattered no one seriously believed in the southern defenders of slavery and their thinking in that mid-19th century on that continent so independent since the 1760’s to 1780’s: Lincoln’s United States.


I urge no war on anyone in this 21st century. But I do say the moral analogy to the pro-slavery/abolition of slavery mid-19th century debate in the United States lies in the pro-capital punishment/anti-death sentence (abolitionists) in the English domain of the 21st century and that debate so acute. Currently those against judicial death sentences prevail in our Country as the owners of plantations in Alabama and Georgia sustained and regulated slavery before the famously joined Gettysburg battle so decisive in the 1860’s. In our Country the modern abolitionists won the repeal of Capital punishment in our criminal courts of the Assizes and the crown court, its successor, by Sidney Silverman’s private member’s bill passed in to law in 1965, under Harold Wilson P.M. That same anti-death sentence lobby remains vociferous. But such abolitionism in its polemic to oppose hanging is paper thin. The same was true of the pro-slavery lobby in the south: mid-19th century USA epoch. Those against the restoration of the death penalty in our 21st century England have no case. The same was true of those in favour of slavery in the Southern States of the confederacy.


What decides this debate now as it was decided in the civil war period? Not military might (General Robert. E. Lee nearly made the confederacy victorious), but the will of the people which is always supreme in democracies. The overwhelming majority of right thinking people in the mid-19th century USA opposed slavery in principle. By the same measure the ordinary English and Welsh people. So well grounded in fairness, almost to a man and woman, support our 21st century English Judge’s discretionary death sentence for murder. If the accused either pleads guilty or is found guilty of that murder by an English jury sworn (an automatic right of appeal against death sentence: it would be available I argue). These English and Welsh believe in this judicial death sentence (discretionary) case whatever other countries think. I include all peoples living in England and Wales, of whatever origin, amongst these English and Welsh.

Finally I say stop this idle talk of those against the death penalty (discretionary) for murder in our beloved Country of England and Wales! I uphold our jurisdiction and her Majesty’s High Court Judiciary: Supreme.

Temon Estate, Dartford
R.M. Lamb