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This blog entry began as a simple poll. A referendum on whether we, as Americans, are willing to back our words with actions.

Approximately twenty-fours after its posting, a total of two people—excluding myself—have deigned to vote

I shouldn’t be surprised, since most Americans don’t even deign to vote in Federal elections. Last November’s was the lowest turnout since 1942. People were fighting a World-War then. What were you doing?

Alright; enough with the upbraiding. We have something serious to discuss.

If you believe in the death-penalty, would you volunteer to be a citizen-executioner? When Gary Gilmore was shot by a firing-squad on 17 January, 1977, it was one composed of volunteers who had signed onto rolls placed in Utah’s sporting-goods stores.

While the state of Utah now uses law-enforcement and correctional officers, other jurisdictions are considering adopting firing-squads and the sign-up rolls could reappear. Would you, for want of a better term, have the balls to shoot someone, if your government told you he or she deserved it?

Utah’s current arrangement also begs another question; with accusations—the spuriousness of which are debatable—of police militarization and brutality, what effect does carrying out executions have on the officer inside the police-cruiser? Vietnam used officers for firing-squads, but went to injection, due to the effect firing-squad participation had on officers.

Returning stateside and on the other side of the window; could you even witness an execution, whether or not the murder-victim was one of your friends or family members? If allowed a few last words for the condemned, could you muster any?

This blog isn’t about whether to abolish the death-penalty. That question will be the subject of a later blog entry. Tonight’s discussion is about the fact that most Americans claim to support the death-penalty, yet get squeamish when people like me ask just how far that support extends.

To borrow from the Japanese, do not kill this discussion with silence. Look within yourselves, vote and comment. I don’t even care if you’re from Britain, Bulgaria, Greece or Canada. It’s sometimes good to hear from those outside of our “Bubble”, also borrowing Bill Maher.

Say something! We stand poised to adopt a new method of execution, suffocation by nitrogen gas, so this is a good time to think about the ultimate punishment and the future of American criminal-justice.

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One Comment

  1. Reblogged this on e-Roll Call Magazine.

    Like


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