Re: [MEDIA] Chicago Suntime's death penalty poll

Max Freedom (
Wed, 16 Dec 1998 22:35:38 -0500

Brian D Williams wrote:
> The Suntime's ran a poll in conjunction with yesterdays article
> against the death penalty. To the question:
> "In the event of your murder, would you want the killer executed?"
> YES: 87% NO: 13%

That assumes a "perfect world" where only the actual killer would ever be charged, convicted, and executed. In reality, mistakes happen and innocent people have been "murdered" by the justice system. Remember "two wrongs don't make a right"? Perhaps a better question would be: "In the event of your murder, and the subsequent conviction of the alleged killer, would you want the death penalty imposed?"

Followed by: "Even if he claimed he didn't do it?" and: "How would you feel if he was executed and later found to be not guilty?"

I support the death penalty only in cases where the murderer agrees to it or guilt is established beyond a shadow of doubt--which is *very* hard to do. The damage caused by applying the death penalty to an innocent person *far* outweighs any of its potential benefits.