Opposing The Death PenaltyTaking this course has made me ponder on many issues which I neverdeemed worthy of my thoughts. I always considered the death penalty one ofthose things which I never had to concern myself with. First of all I’m notplanning to commit any vial crimes, and I don’t think anyone I care about hasthose plans either. Secondly, I’ve never been conscious or concerned with thelikes of criminals.
When we began speaking on the subject, I thought we wereonly going to talk about the institution of racism in capital punishment, andwas quite unaware of the feeling this subject would arouse in me. Needless tosay, I have formed some opinions on the issue which confused even me. I always considered myself pro-capital punishment. I was of the mindthat if someone killed me, I would like my death avenged, but pondering on theissue of cultural differences has made me doubt my prior convictions. First ofall, I am against the use of the lethal injection. I understand that it iscleaner, but if the law wants to inflict death as a punishment, it mustunderstand that death is not a pretty thing.
Criminals are painlessly put tosleep, and die in the same manner that Dr. Kavorkian’s patients choose. Personally, if I was faced with the option of living the remainder of my life inisolation, perpetually haunted by pain and images of terror, I would absolutelychose to die by lethal injection. There is no true punishment in this method,except the fear of going to hell, which I strongly doubt is of much concern tomost convicts on death row.
Assuming that the judicial processes which convict these individualsare legitimate, the only common bond within this group is that they are allmortal, and hold no respect for human life. These delinquents are on death row,because they have committed a crime of such ghastly proportions, that societyhas deemed them unfit to live. They deliberately and nonchalantly depravedanother human of their life. They emphatically partook in reprehensible maliceof inhuman dimensions, never bothered by their conscience. They are sick andvile individuals who do not acknowledge social conventions such as religion andthe law. They have broken the law, and in leaving it they removed themselvesfrom the protection of the law.
The 8th Amendment should no longer apply tothese sick dements who deserve none of my compassion. Yet, the bleeding heartscontinue to defend them and oppose capital punishment because it is too cruel. In an article in the Chicago Tribune, the Roman Catholic church vented itsopposition to capital punishment by affirming that “human life is sacred” andthat “a truly just and humane society” is compelled “to protect and enhance” allhuman lives at every degree of development, “the bishop concluded in thestatement that execution are “an inappropriate response on moral and practicalgrounds. ” But what this argument refuses to acknowledge is that theseindividuals ceased to be human when they renounced their humanity through murder. They do not recognize morality or the principles of humanity. They have chosento go against the laws of every religion and society known to civilization.
They have belittled themselves to the stature of animals, and as so, renouncetheir conscience. Many of them, like those who belong to gangs in LA, don’teven consider death a punishment. Dying is a part of life, and “you can be aking or a street sweeper, but everybody dances with the Grim Reaper. ” (RobertAlton Harris-gassed April 21, 1992) These individuals are so warped, that thedeath penalty would be among the most pleasant punishments they could receive. They have very little they care about, if they cared they wouldn’t have putthemselves in this situation, and they are departing this life for the next. Very few of them believe in religion, so they have no hell to fear.
More thananything they are being freed from their present dismal situation. The deathsentence would only serve as punishment for moral, religious (Christians, Jews,Muslims. . . not Buddhist of Hindus) individuals who respect human life and havesomething to live for; in reality, these are not the people on death row.
Itherefore believe capital punishment too lenient a penalty for these fiend, butat least when they were fried they felt a few minutes of pain to recompense fortheir victim’s suffering. Please forgive my vindictive reaction, but a dear relative of mine wasraped and murdered by one of these beasts; he is still at large. Needless tosay, I believe a harsher form of punishment should be placed on their lives. Ihave therefore devised a more austere discipline which, conveyed in the form offear, would severely downsize heinous crimes, and would also be cheaper. Instead of simply killing them why don’t we just maim them to the point wherethey are no longer a threat to society.
First you amputate their legs from theknee down, so they can no longer walk. Then you cut off their arms so they canno longer shoot, strangle, hit or stab anyone. Then you cut out their tonguesso they no longer speak their ideas of hate. Then you burn their faces tillthey are so ugly to look at that they are ashamed to be alive. Then youcastrate them to make sure they can no longer partake in pleasure.
In thisdisheveled state you throw them out to the streets so they can see and hear thepain, agony and injustice that they so freely bestowed on their victims. Theywill truly suffer for their crimes. They will be the new example for futurecriminals. No longer will the villain be worshipped by the mass media, or bythe youngsters on the streets. The gangster will then cease to exist, and onlythe mentally retarded will perpetuate their heinous crimes.
Isn’t it sad that our situation has become so grave that we mustactually look to these alternatives to solve the problem. I think everyoneknows that the only way to help ourselves to a better life is through education,but politicians continue to withdraw funding for schools. We are going aboutthe solution in the wrong way. If we teach people to value themselves andaccept others, and therefore dissolve economic and class differences, we willtruly begin to put an end to crime. Till then we will have to accept ourreality.Social Issues