Posted By LambChop
"If you come to Texas and kill somebody; we will kill you back. That's our policy." - Ron White
Despite Redneck Comedian Ron White’s enthusiastic support of Texas death penalty, the reality is that public opinion is shifting. Texas will execute its 15th killer in 2013 tonight - Jamie McCoskey, 49. McCoskey abducted a 21- year- old man, Michael Dwyer, and his 19-year-old girlfriend from Dwyer’s apartment in 1991 and forced them to an abandoned house in Houston where Dwyer was killed (stabbed repeatedly) and the woman was brutally raped. McCoskey’s violent outbursts were not limited to weekends of kidnapping, torture, rape and murder, but he also threw furniture at prosecutors during his murder trial.
However a recent Gallop poll shows Americans' support for the death penalty is at its lowest level since 1972 it has dropped to 60%. Is this a sign of creeping liberalism?
Probably not. With the incorporation of new investigative techniques and advances in the science of evidence-gathering, some death row inmates have been exonerated in recent years. Many former death penalty enthusiasts have looked at other government systems – their incompetence, corruption, fraud and political leanings – and decided that if every other part of government is incompetent and corrupt, it makes sense that our legal system is most likely rife with error and political pressure.
The public’s lack of faith in the competence of the system is one problem. The public’s perception of corruption in the system is another. IRS and NSA scandals have alarmed the average American. Fear of the government’s punitive reactions against its citizens, infringements of individuals’ liberty and willingness to throw out the U.S. Constitution have created a police state. The state’s imposition of the death penalty rightly makes folks uneasy.
Of course, the pendulum could swing back – as technology gets better, the chance of executing the wrong perpetrator is greatly reduced and the public could gradually have more faith in a death penalty system that has previously failed.
The question of the morality of the capital punishment has been debated for years. Some find the death penalty a barbaric remnant of brutal warrior cultures from the past. Others feel that is not another human being’s job to decide to end the life of another. Some believe that God created humans with a divine spark within, and to snuff out this divinity is immoral and against the very wishes of God.
Some on the pro death penalty side argue that to allow a murderer who attacked with brutality and intent to go unpunished is, in of itself, immoral. The murderer must be permanently removed from the society which he abused with his heinous act.
The Boston bombings, the Newtown Connecticut murder of children and other acts of egregious, planned mass murder (like the Sikh Temple shooting and Aurora Colorado movie theater murders) are horrific. Despite these acts for which even the most liberal among us could reach into the depths of our souls and justify the death penalty for these unremorseful killers, the public has cooled on the need for revenge. And for the time being, the death penalty is imposed less and less.