Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Death Penalty

They murdered and because of that heinous choice, they were scheduled to forfeit their lives. Lawrence Reynolds Jr. and Darryl Durr are scheduled to die in Ohio, but Governor Strickland issued a stay of execution until next April at the earliest, because of a failed attempt to execute another prisoner months ago with the lethal injection procedure.

I understand that the death penalty for certain crimes is the law. I also understand there is another constitutional law against cruel and unusual punishment.

The legal manipulations in the various courts of law, not only in Ohio, but in many of the states that have the death penalty, seem to me to be cruel and unusual punishment.

If you have been sentenced to die for your crime or crimes and then a legal maneuver delays your death day for either hours or days or months, that to me is cruel and unusual punishment. Put yourself in that position.

On the other side of “thought” you have the emotion of the families and friends of the victim. They must once again face their sorrow and see if an execution and perhaps the witness of it, will ease their pain. I suspect there will always be an emptiness of mind, and a piece of their hearts they cannot mend will always bleed and suffer and we should do what we can to comfort them.

It’s unlikely there will ever be a consensus on the efficacy of the death penalty. There is no way to satisfactorily compile statistics as to whether or not death is a deterrent to murder. The destiny of agreement in this case may be nothing other than a perennial debate.

Perhaps the question we should ask ourselves, before and after every execution, is not whether the person deserved to die, the law decides that, but how do we individually react to it.

In the vastness of attempted understanding there are many valid emotions: tears, anger, fear, detachment and even relief. Vengeance, however, is one active emotion to which we must give prayerful thought before we choose to embrace it, for it is consuming and eternally unsatisfying.

1 comment:

Gabi K said...

I always wonder, if we do not degrade ourselfs to be murders, too by accomplishing death penalty...

As far as I know is "you must not kill" is law all over the world.

Though I understand the relatives of victims, too.

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