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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Death Penalty in America: How many make it worth it?

Who executes more people:  The USA, Sudan, Iraq or Saudi Arabia?  Would it ssurprise you to know, according to Amnesty International, the US leads that pack by a mile? This is despite the fact that we have executed Innocent people in this country, and that well over 100 death row inmates have been exonerated before their sentences were carried out. 

I remember the exact moment I lost any faith in the second incarnation of George Bush  long before the sands of Iraq ever entered the sphere of the American conscience. It was when he justified his reasoning for signing the death warrants to carry out sentences of execution in Texas with comments about the bible and the "tooth for a tooth" line in the old testament.  Never mind that in Jesus's words in the new testament he states:

 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’[h] 39 But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. 40 And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well. 41 If anyone forces you to go one mile, go with them two miles. 42 Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.   This from:

This passage, in my mind, throws out the entire biblical justification for the death penalty on religious grounds, as would the idea of "Judge not lest be judged".  Beyond the biblical references, however, we have the facts-- of what the death penalty has come to mean in this country. 

For your review, attached is the latest fact sheet from the Death Penalty Information Center. I ask you think about this... how many innocent lives are worth the ability to carry out the death penalty?  And what does being able to put someone to death accomplish?  Especially if we are a "God-fearing" nation, is there not a disconnect between our actions and our beliefs?  Just a thought..

Death Penalty Fact Sheet

1 comment:

  1. Have you ever seen 10 Rillington Place? It tells the story of the wrongful murder by state of an innocent man. I've heard that it was the case that so shocked the collective conscience of the U.K. that they abolished the death penalty after the truth became clear.

    I wonder if this country is too cold-hearted to be swayed by the story of a government-ordered execution of an innocent. Hopefully it is just a problem of an insufficiently-shocking miscarriage of justice thus far.