Thursday night, the state of Tennessee executed a death row inmate who was convicted in 1992 of first degree murder and aggravated arson in the killing of his ex-girlfriend. That means, of course, that the murderer was in prison awaiting his sentence to be carried out for 27 years-just under three decades.
The Constitution requires that justice is to be swift-whether it be to prove innocence or administer punishment for the guilty. Our courts have obviously forgotten that guarantee.
Opponents of the death penalty say that part of the opposition is that the death penalty is no deterrent to crime. One reason that could be is that punishment comes so long after that the link to the heinous nature of the crime is forgotten to anyone except those personally touched. No one remembers why this particular convict was executed this week. THAT is the reason there is no deterrent effect. Would it be different if a trial were held, an appeal heard and then, if still convicted, punishment is administered within weeks? Thinking Man is pretty sure it would be.