Society

Larry Flynt Opposes Death Penalty for His Shooter

| by Michael Allen

Larry Flynt, founder and publisher of the famous porn magazine Hustler, was shot outside a Georgia courthouse on March 6, 1978.

As a result of the attempt on his life, Flynt was paralyzed from the waist down and has been using a gold wheelchair ever since.

While in police custody in 1980, Joseph Paul Franklin confessed to shooting Flynt and civil rights activist Vernon Jordan, but was never tried or convicted for either shooting.

However, Franklin was eventually convicted of eight racially motivated murders in Ohio, Tennessee, Utah, Wisconsin and Missouri between 1977 and 1980, and confessed to or was implicated in 13 additional racial murders, notes the Southern Poverty Law Center.

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Franklin was sentenced to death in Missouri in 1997 and is scheduled to be executed lethal injection on Nov. 20, reports KSL.com.

He is reportedly a white supremacist who was angered by the Flynt publishing pictures in Hustler of an interracial couple having sex.

Flynt is now speaking out to oppose Franklin's execution.

In an op-ed he recently wrote for the Hollywood Reporter, Flynt states in part:

In all the years since the shooting, I have never come face-to-face with Franklin. I would love an hour in a room with him and a pair of wire-cutters and pliers, so I could inflict the same damage on him that he inflicted on me. But, I do not want to kill him, nor do I want to see him die.

...Supporters of capital punishment argue that it is a deterrent which prevents potential murderers from committing future crimes, but research has failed to provide a shred of valid scientific proof to that effect whatsoever.

...As far as the severity of punishment is concerned, to me, a life spent in a 3-by-6-foot cell is far harsher than the quick release of a lethal injection. And costs to the taxpayer? Execution has been proven to be far more expensive for the state than a conviction of life without parole, due to the long and complex judicial process required for capital cases.

...As I see it, the sole motivating factor behind the death penalty is vengeance, not justice, and I firmly believe that a government that forbids killing among its citizens should not be in the business of killing people itself.

Sources: Hollywood Reporter, Southern Poverty Law Center, KSL.com