Posted by Joey Kennedy -- Birmingham News April 20, 2009 3:00 AM
What do we gain when we execute people? I supposed there's a feeling of justice. A person committed a brutal murder and we take his life in return. Eye for an eye, and such. Or maybe it's revenge for the victim's family, but does killing another make it all better? Or maybe we've deluded ourselves into thinking we're protecting society, though our prisons are pretty good at keeping people locked up and preventing them from messing with society.
No question that the way our death penalty is applied, we risk executing an innocent person or, at the very least, a nondeserving person. Too many people are satisfied that the risk is worth it, as long as we can give the ultimate punishment to the really bad guys. How did we get here?
This week's Views poll is an attempt to gauge how Alabamians feel about the death penalty as it's currently applied in Alabama. Voting continues through Thursday, and the results, along with a selection of comments, will be published in Sunday's Viewpoints section. Vote now: