Gee...do I have the strength for another DP debate? I guess I'll just throw out what I have to say and just be done with it. Let this stand as my marble monument with a plaque that reads "This Is What I Think And If You Don't Like It Then, Well, I Don't Realy Know What To Tell You". I don't think anybody intends to change anyone's minds on this subject. Just be heard. Thrown into the mix. And what comes out...is hopefully something akin to America...
I think people forget that laws, at least in what we hold as the ideal - the "Idea" of - America, are meant not to lay out what to do with wrong-doers but rather to protect the innocent. And not just from our fellow citizens but rather our own government. ESPECIALLY our government. When it comes right down to it, capital punishment protects no one. It doesn't prevent. It doesn't even 'deal' with the convicted. There is no rehabilitation. No one benefits from a death. ANY death. At the very least, convicted murderers can be studied. Perhaps even "cured". We live in a new age. Or at the very least the dawn of one. We often forget that with our own limited scope of reality, we see it as a waste of resources to "keep someone alive". In truth, it amounts to essentially nothing when dealing with a budget of trillions of dollars. But that aside, what is the "worth" of keeping someone alive who "obviously" can't be allowed back into society for fear that they might just "do it again"? And that is where the Idea of America comes in.
This country is fairly unique because the founders wanted to make damn sure that the government, while remaining powerful and effective, was always able to be kept in check. ALWAYS. Now, at times that might seem to be an ever receding goal. And it is. But what is protecting us in this case? How are we individually protected by not executing people? Quite simply it is because...it could be you. It could be you on Death Row. Imagine the horror of knowing that you didn't do something but being completely and utterly incapable of defending yourself because, why, you have already been found guilty, my friend. No soup for you. Game...over. And therein lies the crux of my argument. That being that the DP...is irreversible. We know for a fact that not one...not two...not five...but several...and I'll be honest, I don't know the exact numbers...but more than a few people have later been found to be wrongly executed. More than quite a few that were on Death Row have in recent history been exonerated due in part to advances in forensic technology. Well, good for them. "Here you go, sir or madam. Please take this hunk of money as a token of our heartfelt thanks for not making it your life's mission to end OUR lives for inflicting the pain and suffering you just went through for god knows how long." But what of the executed? "Here you go, relatives of the electrocuted. Take this chunk of cash as a token of our heartfelt......"
You see, the "worth" of "keeping alive" those people on Death Row protects us in this way: it allows us to always be guaranteed one immutable right no matter what happens. That is, to have the opportunity to defend ourselves; to seek justice. "But he did it! We saw him do it on the tape!" you might say. Again, it's not about them. It's about us. It's about us having a guarantee that The Almighty State can never...NEVER...decide to end your life and take you completely out of the picture for good. It's about providing one sliver of hope for anyone who is ever falsely accused and convicted of a capital crime. We tend to forget about those times where we say things like "Oh, man! He was totally guilty! How on god's green earth did he ever get off?!" and how it applies to the inverse situation. It may not happen a lot but it does. It HAS. And simply because the result is so final is the reason it isn't appropriate. More so it is simply wrong.
I cannot argue with those that think it is fine that some should die "for the cause" as it were. But there is no cause to die for in this case and I don't see anyone volunteering to die. I highly doubt that if caught up in the system and falsely convicted of a crime that the people who make this argument would "gladly lay down their life for justice". Either way, there is no arguing with such people. And so my opinion stands. The Death Penalty in today's day and age is ineffective, prevents nothing and is pointless. It "solves" nothing save the blood lust of the survivors. And that is what I think the author of this article was trying to convey. That being that even then, a certain percentage of those related to the victims don't really yearn for the convict’s death. To do so would be very primitive indeed. And the last time I checked, humanity was becoming more civilized and less primitive. At the very least trying to be more civilized. I think the better a group treats its criminals the more they display the hallmark of truly advanced civilization. So one must ask themselves this question: are they more primitive or do they consider themselves more highly civilized? And I think the subject of capital punishment causes one to answer that question whether they realize it or even want to or not.