Monday, April 7, 2014

The Death Penalty



Long, long ago I started a blog post on the Death Penalty, but I never published it. I believe it is one of only a few hot political topics I haven't yet discussed on my blog.

Last week I mentioned my new found fascination with the Supreme Court. Well, now I have a retired Justice's book to add to my long list of "if I ever read books again" booklist. John Paul Stevens sums up my views on the Death Penalty quite perfectly. So here are his words:

For me, the question that cannot be avoided is whether the execution of only an "insignificant minimum" of innocent citizens is tolerable in a civilized society. Given the availability of life imprisonment without the ability of parole as an alternative method of preventing the defendant from committing further crimes and deterring others from doing so, and the rules that prevent imposing an "eye for an eye" form of retributive punishment, I find the answer to that question pellucidly clear. When it comes to state-mandated killings of innocent civilians, there can be no "insignificant minimum."

With what we know of wrongful convictions and racial disparities in capital cases, I'm amazed anyone can disagree with Stevens' conclusion on the matter.

4 comments:

Megan said...

I have mixed feelings on the death penalty and at the very least think it should be used sparingly, BUT I do think that if you take an absolute position against abortion because you believe in a right to life, then you similarly must be against the death penalty. I don't think of either issue in terms of absolutes, but I am bothered by people who take an absolutist position on one of those topics and then take a completely opposite stance on the other.

Scott and Claudia said...

You know me and my views. As far as I am concerned Ted Bundy deserved the death penalty.

Liz Szilagyi said...

I'm not arguing Ted Bundy deserved to live. I'm arguing that killing Ted Bundy wasn't worth killing hundreds of innocent men and women. If one innocent person dies, capital punishment is NOT WORTH IT!

Anonymous said...

And you know my opinion (for the moment)! No more to say... Pa

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