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Monday, October 4, 2010

Death Penalty vs. Life In Prison

Transmitted originally on May 21, 2008

By now we should all agree that MURDER is the worst crime of all.  It can be argued there are worse crimes than that, but those arguments are somewhat emotional in nature and contradict the obvious; that dead is dead.

So what should the penalty be?  God said it should be death.  People have argued against it because of a number of reasons.  Let us explore the reasons for each.

Death Penalty: God's proscribed penalty.

Life in Prison: Man's alternative.

Death Penalty: Final.

Life in Prison: For as long as the murderer shall live.

Death Penalty: A horrible crime in itself, if the convicted did not commit murder.

Life in Prison: Allows for appeals and for evidence to come forward if the convicted was wrongfully convicted.

Death Penalty: Prevents murderer from murdering again.

Life in Prison: Open ended proposition.  Murderers can do things like write books, be interviewed by people that want to study murderers.  In some cases, we can get them to labor at low cost.  In reality, many are released at some point and commit murder again.  Extremely prejudicial against the innocent we must protect.

Death Penalty: Cheap.  Does not require the state to spend much money.

Life in Prison: Expensive.  Must feed, clothe, shelter, medicate, and protect murderers from rest of prison population.

Death Penalty: May not be as quick and painless as we might like, but need not last very long.

Life in Prison: In fact, can be a form of torture and is cruel and unusual.  Force murderer to suffer for sin of murder without hope for release.

Death Penalty:  Deterrent message is clear.  You will die for committing murder.

Life in Prison: Can be viewed by the insane as a way of getting the state to provide what they cannot provide for themselves.

Death Penalty: Has been applied unevenly along racial lines.  Apparent bias against lower classes.  The rich are able to avoid it.

Life in Prison: Without having statistics nearby, apparently the rich have received lighter sentencing.  Murderers in prison, or after release, become similar to celebrities which is a horrible example for everyone.

Given the choice, I side with the victims and the innocent.  I still believe in the Death Penalty once it is proven the defendant committed murder without any form of doubt about the facts at all.  And besides, it is not as though we have a dearth of people in this world.

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