Friday, April 29, 2005

 

The only "foolproof" death penalty is no death penalty

As long as some humans are fools, nothing is "foolproof."
Massachusetts Governor Urges Death Penalty

Gov. Mitt Romney introduced a bill on Thursday that would bring back capital punishment to Massachusetts, and would do so by creating a death penalty that he said was virtually foolproof.

The bill includes several provisions that have never been tried in any other state. It would require that there be "conclusive scientific evidence," like DNA or fingerprints, to link a defendant to a crime. And it would allow a death penalty to be imposed only if a sentencing jury finds there is "no doubt" about a defendant's guilt, a standard that is stricter than "beyond a reasonable doubt."

"To the extent that is humanly possible," Mr. Romney said at a news conference, "this would not ever result in a questionable execution."
No, sir, the only thing that will never result in questionable executions is not to execute anyone.

Scientific safeguards and strict jury instructions cannot compensate for all the flaws in our criminal justice system. They cannot atone for prosecutorial discretion. They cannot atone for inadequate legal representation, or a sympathetic victim and an odious defendant. They cannot atone for prejudice, press hysteria, understandably vengeful families, right-wing cranks, sloppy police work, and just plain bad luck.

In any case, the argument that the death penalty can be "saved" by ever stricter precautions against executing the innocent is completely bogus. Yes, it's terrible when an innocent person is put to death - but it's just as terrible when a completely guilty person is executed. That's a tougher argument to make, but it is a valid one. Fallible humans are just not capable of deciding, if such a decision were possible, who should live and who should die. We just can't do it. Nor should we ever have to.

Capital punishment has completely failed by any and every possible measure. It does not work. There are far more effective ways of fighting crime and punishing wrongdoers, ways that will not waste time and money in endless, futile argument. This is well known, and the only people pressing for capital punishment now are right-wingers and moderates trying to build up some political credit with right-wingers. Give it up, Mitt. You're not going to be president, not in a million years. The Republican Party will never vote for someone from Massachusetts. It's distasteful (to put it mildly) to see you start your campaign with a pep rally for officially sanctioned murder.

Let's move on. It's time to fire up Ol' Sparky and put the death penalty itself to death.
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Comments: "
Hi i am totally blown away with the blogs people have created its so much fun to read alot of good info and you have also one of the best blogs !! Have some time check my link to !!Make money using the internet
 
" "
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