October 18, 2013

Larry Flynt: Death penalty no deterrent

The Hustler magazine publisher believes a tiny prison cell is a harsher punishment.

The Associated Press

LOS ANGELES — Porn publisher Larry Flynt says he doesn’t want to see the serial killer whose gunshots left him paralyzed 35 years ago put to death for his crimes.

Larry Flynt, shown in 2007, thinks death is too kind for the man who shot him in 1978. The shooter, Joseph Franklin, is scheduled for execution on Nov. 20.

Reuters

In an essay published Thursday in The Hollywood Reporter, Flynt says that while he would love to take pliers and a pair of wire cutters to Joseph Paul Franklin, he does not believe in the death penalty.

Franklin has been in prison since 1980 for a string of shootings that left five people dead and others wounded. He is scheduled to be executed Nov. 20 in Missouri.

“I have every reason to be overjoyed with that decision, but I am anything but,” writes Flynt, who has been paralyzed from the waist down since he was shot in 1978 on the steps of a Georgia courthouse. He was there to fight pornography charges.

The Hustler magazine publisher said he doesn’t believe capital punishment is a deterrent to crime. He wrote that when pickpockets were executed in 18th-century England, people who turned out to watch the public hangings often had their pockets picked.

“That’s a true story, and, if you’re ever trying to convince somebody of why the death penalty is not a deterrent, that’s a good example,” Flynt wrote.

He said he believes keeping Franklin in a tiny prison cell is a harsher punishment.

After he was convicted of his fifth murder, Franklin asked to be sentenced to death. He has been on death row for 15 years.

Franklin, who said his hatred of blacks and Jews sent him on his killing spree, was never tried for the attack on Flynt but admitted it.

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