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Thread: Assassination vs. Murder

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    PLATO
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    Assassination vs. Murder

    How important does a person have to be before they are considered assassinated instead of just murdered?
    "I am sick and tired of people who say that if you debate and you disagree with this administration somehow you're not patriotic. We should stand up and say we are Americans and we have a right to debate and disagree with any administration." - Hillary Clinton, 2003

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    SlowwHand
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    Assassination is the murder of a public figure.[1] An added distinction between assassination and other forms of killing is that the assassin has an ideological or political motivation, though many assassins (especially those not part of an organization) also demonstrate insanity; other motivations are money (contract killing), revenge, or a military operation.

    The assassination euphemism targeted killing (extrajudicial execution) also is used for government-sanctioned killing of opponents.[2] 'Assassination' itself, along with terms such as 'terrorist' and 'freedom fighter', may in this context be considered a loaded term, as it implies an act where the proponents of such killings may consider them justified or even necessary.[2]
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    Riesstiu IV
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    Oh wikipedia, what don't you know?

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    PLATO
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    Originally posted by Riesstiu IV
    Oh wikipedia, what don't you know?
    Wow...no kidding
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    SlowwHand
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    Cool

    Moderators would count as public figures, wouldn't they?
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    Spec
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    So, being assassinated is kind of a compliment?

    Spec.
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    Lazerus
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    Yeah, shows people care about you, like when you're famous enough to have stalkers
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    Zkribbler
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    Assassination is the murder of a public figure.[
    I don't agree with this definition.

    For example, John Lennon wasn't assassinated. He was murdered.

    If Hillary would have shot Bill because of the Monica Lewinsky scandal, that wouldn't have been an assassination. [Insert appropriate joke here.]

    I'd say an assassination is the purposeful neutralization of a government official or political leader by killing him or her.

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    More accurately, assassination is politically motivated murder of a public figure. This encompasses a slightly more broad definition, but I think is accurate; if Lennon had been killed because of his politics, assassination would be correct (and it is actually used by many people in any event, I'd say that more often than not when his killing is mentioned to me, it's called assassination).
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    Evidently, you boys are wrong. It isn't defined as strictly political. BUZZZZZZ! Next!
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    Zkribbler > Wikipedia

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    SlowwHand
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    Ooooh. One of those. I see.
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    chequita guevara
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    Re: Assassination vs. Murder

    Originally posted by PLATO
    How important does a person have to be before they are considered assassinated instead of just murdered?
    I don't think it's who you are, I think it's why you're murdered. If Bush slept with someone dude's wife and he shot him, that wouldn't be an assassination. If someone killed me to stop me from leading a protest, it would be an assassination.
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    According to The New Oxford American Dictionary, 2nd ed (hardcopy):

    assassinate: murder (an important person) in a surprise attack for political or religious reasons. See note at kill. (p. 94)

    Murder implies a malicious and premeditated killing of one person by another ..., while assassinate implies that a politically important person has been murdered, often by someone hired to do the job.... (p. 929)
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    Assassination is murder for political reasons. When the crown prince of Nepal murdered the King and all the rest of his family but one brother, it wasn't considered an assassination. Just a murder.
    Christianity: The belief that a cosmic Jewish Zombie who was his own father can make you live forever if you symbolically eat his flesh and telepathically tell him you accept him as your master, so he can remove an evil force from your soul that is present in humanity because a rib-woman was convinced by a talking snake to eat from a magical tree...

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    So, it sounds like it's not who you kill, but why you kill. Therefore, the killing of an abortion doctor by a religious nutjob is an assassination? It sounds to me like it would be.
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    Originally posted by chegitz guevara
    Assassination is murder for political reasons. When the crown prince of Nepal murdered the King and all the rest of his family but one brother, it wasn't considered an assassination. Just a murder.
    So why do people talk about the assassination of Tupac Shakur?

    (NOTE: I will accept "because they're idiots" as an answer.)
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    Jon Miller
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    Governments assassinate rather then murder.

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    molly bloom
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    Originally posted by Rufus T. Firefly


    So why do people talk about the assassination of Tupac Shakur?
    Because it was 'The Man' who was down on him, or, he had secret knowledge of 9/11 .
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    chequita guevara
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    Originally posted by Rufus T. Firefly
    So why do people talk about the assassination of Tupac Shakur?

    (NOTE: I will accept "because they're idiots" as an answer.)
    Because they're idiots works for me.
    Christianity: The belief that a cosmic Jewish Zombie who was his own father can make you live forever if you symbolically eat his flesh and telepathically tell him you accept him as your master, so he can remove an evil force from your soul that is present in humanity because a rib-woman was convinced by a talking snake to eat from a magical tree...

  21. #21
    chequita guevara
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    Originally posted by Xorbon
    So, it sounds like it's not who you kill, but why you kill. Therefore, the killing of an abortion doctor by a religious nutjob is an assassination? It sounds to me like it would be.
    That's my assertion, yes.
    Christianity: The belief that a cosmic Jewish Zombie who was his own father can make you live forever if you symbolically eat his flesh and telepathically tell him you accept him as your master, so he can remove an evil force from your soul that is present in humanity because a rib-woman was convinced by a talking snake to eat from a magical tree...

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    Perfection
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    Originally posted by Xorbon
    So, it sounds like it's not who you kill, but why you kill. Therefore, the killing of an abortion doctor by a religious nutjob is an assassination? It sounds to me like it would be.
    I would say it isn't. Simple political motivations don't make someone an assassin, or else deadly voter intimidation would be an assasination. An interesting metric we could work with is if the killer was seeking a specific person rather then a representative of a group where one member would be as good as any other (ie. "it doesn't matter which abortion doctor is dead so long as a I kill one").

    But I'm not sure if the political reasons are neccearily important. John Hinckley is generally said to have attempted to assassinate Reagan, but that clearly wasn't for political reasons.

    Offhand, I'd say an assassination is the killing of a prominant political figure in a suprising manner (ambush poisoning or the like instead of military action or execution) because of thier political position.
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