The Death Penalty

The Death Penalty

I did a research paper back just after the dawn of time about people who were convicted of a crime and put to death. The paper focused on those trials that turned out wrong and evidence was discovered later that proved their innocence. Once upon a time, it was not that rare, but it happened more often in ideologic based trials (race, religion, politics, etc.). Unfortunately, U.S. history is fraught with judicial inconsistencies and streams of injustices. No system is perfect, but after making some progress in my lifetime, it is still a mess.

And it is getting worse, but in a different way.

It seems the pendulum is stuck on the perpetrators side with most (some would argue all) of the advantages being provided to the criminal, excuse me, alleged criminal (…see!!). In this day and age of video evidence, the justice system needs to adapt. Much of the processing could be modernized. Police reports could be done on tape with accompanying video to help explain the situation. It would take up less time and be easily stored and retrieved. The courts need to adapt its procedures as well.

Justice needs a fast track.

Sentencing reform is a separate policy and I may take it up soon, but it too is in dire need of an upgrade. What has caused the spike in violent crime is a frequent policy discussion and as capital crime rates spike across the country, the tired old cries of gun control, gun confiscation, and other gun ownership restrictions are ubiquitous headlines. This gun or that accoutrement must be banned in order to keep us all safe. It goes back and forth with little productive change. One side wants to ban guns and the other side will give them up when you pry them from their cold dead hands. The slogans abound.

My favorite…. We need to ban guns.

Yeah, sure, kind of like making drugs illegal got rid of all the drugs. People who think like this are delusional, and wrong. First, it is a constitutional right. Beyond that, not that any other justification should be needed, the world would never consider an armed incursion into the U.S.  They are all terrified of the rednecks with guns…wait, that’s redundant. I have lived all over this country and I can assure you, it is not only the rednecks that are armed to the teeth. Folks out West are equally well stocked and show an above average prowess. City folks, and not just the criminals, are also well armed. They know they have to be to protect themselves.

Instead of trying to get rid of the guns, we need to terminate these folks who use them to hurt innocent people. Wait, it shouldn’t matter whether it is a gun, a knife, or any other instrument, if the evidence is clear a person’s life was deliberately taken, a quick trial, display of evidence, and a trip out the back door with a syringe, or a rope. We need to quit screwing around. Law enforcement has clear video evidence in many of these cases and yet it takes years for it to come to trial. This needs to stop. The justice system needs to enter the modern age and start employing tools to make it more efficient and to distribute justice swiftly. We need to bring back the death penalty when there is clear evidence. No more appeals, no hung juries due to ideology or threats, and no release on a technicality. In many of these recent cases, there is no doubt who did it, and who was killed.

But justice is left wanting.

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