The Land Of Lincoln becomes the 16th state to abolish the death penalty.
I must admit to mixed views on this topic. I am a strong law and order kind of guy, I do not rush to excuse criminal behavior and I think people should be punished for their crimes. Certainly we can take into account their background but the fact is many people have bad backgrounds but only a few commit crimes. This is especially true when it comes to capital offenses.
At the same time, the death penalty is the one irreversable action government can take. We can’t unexecute a person when we find out they are innocent. Further, the long term cost of carrying out the death penalty is far in excess of lifetime imprisonment.
In the end I think at this point I would have to at least support a moratorium on the penalty until we can resolve the problems with mistakes and unequal legal defenses for all defendants.
I welcome comments from both sides on this topic.