I'm possibly one of the very few liberals who believes in the death sentence. I know its disturbing and gut wrenching, but i believe that in extreme cases a death sentence is appropriate. I do NOT believe it should be handed out like candy, however.
Today I've been researching the death sentence in the united states and I've come across some thing that has made me turn cold. In GW Bush's five years as Governor of Texas, there were 131 executions. The highest number in the united states. During this time there was only 1 prisoner was granted a commuting of sentence (that from death to life in prison). And that came about at the same time he was running for president AND it was proven in the media that even though this man had confessed to the murder he wasn't even in the same state at the time of it.
In his list of conquests, Bush has executed a man who committed a crime when he was 16 (a juvenile and is prohibited under international law), a mentally handicapped man, and a woman who had so clearly changed her jailers requested a commuting of her sentence. All of these people are dead now. and if that isn't enough to cause you to pause, maybe this is.
In the weeks before the execution, Bush says, a number of protesters came to Austin to demand clemency for Karla Faye Tucker. "Did you meet with any of them?" I ask. Bush whips around and stares at me. "No, I didn't meet with any of them", he snaps, as though I've just asked the dumbest, most offensive question ever posed. "I didn't meet with Larry King either when he came down for it. I watched his interview with Tucker, though. He asked her real difficult questions like, 'What would you say to Governor Bush?'" "What was her answer?" I wonder. "'Please,'" Bush whimpers, his lips pursed in mock desperation, "'don't kill me.'" I must look shocked — ridiculing the pleas of a condemned prisoner who has since been executed seems odd and cruel — because he immediately stops smirking.taken from Talk Magazine (September 1999, p. 106).
Perhaps what makes me the most angry is the article that conducted research into the legal system in Texas. It found that those being tried were not being adequately represented. Out of the 131 people sentenced to death, one third of all defence lawyers were later sacked for being bad lawyers. In 40 cases defence lawyers presented no evidence.
In case your saying that all this sounds sad, but these were criminals and deserved what they got, well, they may not have been criminals. Without adequate lawyers to help defend them, they were railroaded to meet a quota. Is this really the sort of legal system we want to support?
Karla Faye Tucker- Wikipedia
Death in Texas