Pope Francis has just left our country, and while he was here he was an inspiration to many including those incarcerated. He even visited a prison and blessed those inmates present. In his view all life is valuable.
Today Kelly Gissendaner is scheduled to be executed at 7 PM. Pope Francis sent a plea for repeal of the death penalty, but the Georgia Parole Board gave the green light to the execution in spite of his letter. Yes, what she did was atrocious, but she has been in prison since 1997 for her part n the murder of her husband, by her lover. Her lover, by he way, is serving a life sentence without parole. Should she not receive the same?
I am against the death penalty and believe that justice is better served with mercy. She should not be let go, but sentenced to serve the rest of her life in prison. If we kill humans, then who are we in the eyes of humanity?
She has been a model citizen while serving her time and has been an inspiration for other prisoners. Literally hundreds of clergy have asked for clemency for her. She will be the first woman put to death in 70 years. Who will her death serve? What purpose will it serve? It will not deter others and it does not serve humanity. How will it affect her three children?
I can only hope that there will be a last minute judgement to stay her execution. If not, I pray for her soul.
This is what the firing squad execution chamber looks like in Utah, where Governor Gary Herbert approved the execution of prisoners by firing squad. I wonder how he would feel if he were one of the firing squad looking at this with a person sitting inside it. Could he pull the trigger? By making it “legal” he has pulled the trigger the same as if he were right there.
Brady McCombs, of the Associated Press, posted an article today describing how firing squads operate. It was a chilling description of murder. The inmate is seated in the chair and a target is placed over their heart. They are given two minutes to say some last words and then five shooters with .30 caliber Winchester rifles fire at the target.
This barbaric method, which has not been legal in any state for the last 40 years, should not be allowed. In fact, executions should not be allowed at all. We are not murderers. If someone has committed murder or some other heinous crime, keep them in prison for life. Let us not lower ourselves to the level of killers of men and women.
Quote in The Guardian 3/23/2015:
“Faced with a nationwide scarcity of execution drugs, Utah’s governor on Monday signed into law a bill that resurrects the use firing squads as an alternative method of executing condemned inmates.”
Governor Gary Herbert belongs to the LDS Church. Do they approve of murder? If he were the one to pull the trigger would he actually do it? Is there any difference in authorizing murder and doing it yourself? The governor gave the reason that the drugs used for the execution were difficult to obtain. Does anyone wonder why the European countries who made the “scarce” drugs are not making them anymore or are not exporting them? Maybe they grew a conscience.
First, there is no moral reason that our government should authorize any executions, never mind by firing squad. Yes, there have been many heinous crimes committed, and those people should pay a price for their crimes. Keep them locked up for life. Make them work to pay for their keep. They are not a threat to the public when they are incarcerated. Governor Gary Herbert belongs to the LDS Church. Do they approve of murder?
Not all, but a lot of heinous crimes are committed under the influence of drugs and or alcohol by mostly young, stupid people. The rest are committed by people suffering from mental illness. (Does anyone doubt that Jeffery Dahmer was mentally ill?)
After years in prison, they may not be the same person who committed that crime. That does not absolve them, but it does change the dynamics of punishment.
One hundred and fifty prisoners in America who were sent to death row since 1973 have later been exonerated. Some have even been under 18 years old. Others have been executed despite serious doubts about their guilt. They may have had poor legal representation, it may have been more a matter of racial injustice, it may have been mistaken identity. Execution is final and there is no turning back or second chances. It also has not made a difference in the amount or type of crimes committed in the US.
Lets hear your ideas on this volatile topic.