California voters will decide in November whether the death penalty should be abolished after enough signatures were obtained by petitioners to have the proposal put on the ballot. Obviously, many Californians want to get rid of the death penalty.
Not only is it unethical to kill, it is unethical to have everyone suffer from the enormous cost of something that is not being carried out as planned. Californians should vote in favor of the proposition.
Some students question the effectiveness of the petitioners that persistently ask students to sign for tax breaks or abortion rights, but as of April 23, 555,236 signatures were received by petitioners to abolish the death penalty in California. This number greatly exceeds the 504,760 required signatures to have the proposal put on the ballot in California.
While the state is scheduled to execute 10 inmates this year, there have been no executions since 2006. With the continuing trends, more executions are doubtful to occur in the future. In the entire country, out of 78 death sentences handed down in 2011, 43 inmates were executed. This leaves 35 inmates who are still put into the high security death-row prisons. The U.S. as a whole has 3,149 inmates who are simply sitting and waiting on death-row for their execution. Some have been there for over 20 years, such as cult leader and murderer Charles Manson.
If the proposition is approved in the November ballot, the death penalty will be abolished, and the death row inmates would be sentenced to life with out parole. While ethically speaking, some may say that justice would not be served to these inmates who have murdered another human being; there would be no chance for them to be released. Not only would there be no releases made, but according to lobbyists in favor of the proposition, the abolition would save a severely in debt state of California over $62 million each year, with the closing of the country’s largest penitentiary, San Quentin Prison.
Yes, the death penalty seems to hold some justice for those families who are suffering from losses, but at what cost must this justice be served? There is an injustice to the state and all its tax-payers in having the death penalty continue. With the state budget crisis, Californians are suffering enough financially.
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