Est. May 2008

08 May, 2014

On Judicial Execution

In the wake of the so-called ‘botched’ execution of convicted murderer Clayton Lockett, everybody and his brother is weighing in on the topic of the death penalty.

To get us started, here’s a run-down on convicted murderer Clayton Lockett, brought to us by Ann Coulter.

Now, after reading that, how many of you think he got what he deserved?  Quite frankly, part of me is saying, “Good.”  And I’m sure I’d be accused of calling for ‘an eye for an eye’ punishment, but (contra Ms Kathleen Parker), the only way the lex talionis would have applied here would be if convicted murderer Clayton Lockett had been shot twice and then buried alive.

One of the topics brought up every time we discuss judicial execution is, ‘What if you get the wrong person?’  Most people asking this will be demanding that we’re 100% sure that the person about to be executed actually did the crime.  Well, sorry to be the one to tell you this, but without a full-face image of both the perpetrator and the victim, there is no such thing as 100% sure.  This is why evidence is gathered, evidence is offered during a jury trial, and twelve men and women come to the final conclusion of guilt or innocence.  That’s what we’ve got, folks.  Now, if you insist on second-guessing the decisions of a 12-person panel who’ve seen the evidence, then I suggest you start agitating for a complete dissolution of the trial-by-jury judicial method we employ: after all, if you won’t accept the decision of a jury over something as big as murder, why would you bother accepting their decision over, say, car theft or burglary?

Another topic that’s brought up is the inhumanity of executing prisoners.  Here’s a question: which is worse – executing a convicted murderer, or putting him (or her) in prison for the rest of their lives?  KathleenParker has her answer:
To my own vengeful eye, life in prison is far more excruciating than a 43-minute execution. Far worse is a confined life without privilege or diversion — except perhaps for books because reading keeps the mind sharp, all the better to remain alert to one’s malignant fate.

Inhumane? Who cares?

Though my intentions be cruel, I’d rather not participate in the death of another except as self-defense. (emphasis mine)
Yes.  Ms Parker would rather the prisoner rot in jail – quite possibly a Supermax, considering the crime – than give them death.

Who’s inhumane now?

And speaking of inhumane treatment, convicted murderer Clayton Lockett suffered for about 45 minutes because his legally-required lethal injection got fouled up.  Yes, the legally-required lethal injection demanded by bleeding-hearts who, though they’d rather the death penalty be abolished entirely, conceded to it so long as the method of execution was painless.

How’d that work out in this case?

So the same people who would rather have a convicted murderer rot in prison (and perhaps go completely insane) demanded an execution method that could be horribly ‘botched’, causing three-quarters-of-an-hour of pain and suffering.  These are the same people who demanded that electrocution and gassing be abolished because they were ‘too cruel’ – something on which I find myself in agreement – and abolishing firing squads – which I disagree with entirely.  A bullet to the head, though it sounds brutal, is efficient, swift, painless (or a whole lot less painless than what convicted murderer Clayton Lockett went through), and inexpensive. 

Folks, we live in an imperfect world.  Yes, we need to make every effort we humanly can to assure that those convicted of crimes – especially murder – are rightfully convicted of their crimes; we must make every effort to make sure prosecutors and defense attorneys present their evidence as objectively as possible; we then must trust in the evidence-based decision-making process of twelve men and women; then we must abide by their decision.

And in the case of murder, we must accept the rightness of the death penalty, and we must demand that the method of execution be swift and as painless as possible.
“Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed, for God made man in his own image. (Genesis 9:6, ESV)

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