29 July 2014

Punishing You Now and in the Hereafter: Capital +

I knew punishments were steeper in the past, but this is a new one to me:
Any person who shall hereafter be guilty of stealing, or selling, any free person as a slave, knowing the person so sold to be free, and shall be thereof lawfully convicted, the person so convicted, shall suffer death without benefit of clergy.
That's a Virginia statute from 1792 and it puts our modern day capital punishment to shame. We're going to kill you and not give you an opportunity to redeem your soul.

On the other hand, it could just be a way of saying you can't get out of a death sentence by being literate.

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