Our death penalty system is in serious need of a massive overhaul. We seem to be executing people for crimes, that while awful, shouldn't be above life in prison. Much worse, we may be executing innocent people, which should never happen. Two cases have come up that make me question my support for the death penalty which I believe is both used too much and not enough.
Let me explain. Anyone who sits on death row with even a smidgen of doubt should not be executed until his guilt is guaranteed. However, on the flip side, we spend way too much money with pointless appeal after appeal for some that we KNOW did it and should die a lot quicker than they are. The process is not there to protect the prisoner but to fatten lawyers pockets, as it always seems that no matter how innocent or guilty the person on death row is, the appeal process never changes the status of said prisoner ever, just delaying the inevitable, except in really rare circumstances.Why do we as tax payers have to keep paying for a system that is obviously not doing what it is supposed to be? If this process stopped executions of the innocent I would be more forgiving, but that never seems to happen while the guilty get their life span stretched out ad naseum.
There are have been two cases that have spotlighted our whack death penalty system lately. One person who was guilty but not have deserved the death penalty and a second in which the person's guilt is highly questionable have all reached the headlines this week. Both highlights serious problems with the death penalty. And just so you know, both defendants are white so take racism off the board.
The first case involved Kelly Renee Gissendaner, a Georgia woman convicted of hiring her lover to kill her husband back in 1997. So, even though her guilt was not in question, she still spent almost 20 years before finally being put down.Why should we have to pay for twenty years of this woman drawing breath, costing millions of dollars and sucking up resources the rest of us would like our dwindling supply to go to?
The second case involved an Oklahoma man on death row for ordering the killing of his boss, also in 1997. Twenty years again says our parole system and appeal methods need to be streamlined something fierce. The sad part about this story is that the only evidence against this guy was the word of the killer who said Richard Glossip put him up to it. So with zero evidence, except the word of a guy who didn't want to get the death penalty, Glossip spends twenty years on death row, with countless appeals and no one noticed this guy sounds like he got railroaded? WTF? No one should go to jail on the word of just one person. I've seen how that works first hand when I was accused of doing something I didn't by a guy currently at the time in a mental institution, yet the cops spent two years doing everything they could to prove my guilt. I had a good lawyer and the lack of any evidence caused the cop to get fired and the lawyer disbarred. I was 14 at the time so don't think just because you are not black, the system won't screw with you from time to time.
Here's a big problem with both cases: why twenty years of appeals if nothing changes for either. The Georgia case was recognized even by a former State Supreme court judge who came out and said he made a mistake not commuting her sentence back in 2000, as the killer got a lesser sentence than she did, just like Glossip. I honesty don't think any of these people should have gotten the death penalty as that punishment is being used on people who who don't deserve it nationwide. Gissendaner did indeed instruct someone to kill her husband, but that should not be enough for a death penalty case. The argument ultimately is moot as she was put to death this week.
Glossip on the other hand got a slight reprieve due to the wrong chemicals sent to kill him delayed his sentence. This guy shouldn't even be prison let alone death row and if twenty years of appeals, including a slap in the face denial from our worthless Supreme Court, doesn't convince you that maybe we should be halting ALL executions immediately, you are one sick bastard. I support the death penalty but it needs to be changed and quick. We need to make 100% sure the person being executed did it, DNA tests for everyone on death row who could use it, and stop sentencing people to death row who shouldn't be there.
Once we conclude that, the death penalty can resume with less appeals for the obviously guilty, as well as a severe reduction of who gets the death penalty, and a return to things like hanging and a firing squad to save money on way too expensive "humane" killings. I do not care if some of these bastards suffer one bit. Their victims sure did.
Glossip should be granted a new trial at the very least because him getting offed on the word of one person with a reason to lie (death penalty removed from sentence for testimony against Glossip), is a big red flag that he may be indeed innocent. The fact that two trials convicted him also bolster my desire to end trial by peers and have professional jurors and TV cameras in every courtroom in the country. The reason for that isn't to protect the system from outside influence but to protect itself from people seeing how crappy our justice system really is. If everyday Americans saw how our court system was being used, they would riot. I would know.
Oklahoma is about to execute another man for killing his 9 month old daughter in 2002 and another guy for killing a prison worker in 1998. Only the later should be put to death as anytime a stranger is killed for no reason, you prove a huge threat to society. The other should have their sentence commuted to life. Yes, an innocent child was killed, and I admit I do not know the specifics of this case, but if the child wasn't tortured or anything like that, this sentence seems overly harsh.
The death penalty should only be used for the worst of the worst and only if guilt is assured. Everyone else, should spend their lives behind bars.