California should advocate for death penalty

Californians should advocate for the death penalty to remain a part of the legal system. We cannot reward those who clearly do not deserve it.

The state of California is having difficulty deciding whether or not to keep the death penalty. California had it, then abolished it and now currently the state has it, but now wants to abolish it once again.

According to ABC 7, State Sen. Lori Hancock (D-Berkeley) has created a bill that will replace capital punishment with life without parole, set to have its first hearing in early July of 2012.

If this new bill passes, the highest penalty in California will be life without parole. Inmates will be provided with employment,and the wages that they make are to be given to their victims, Dieter stated.

This is, by far, the most irrational move that this state has considered.

Currently there are 714 people on death row, yet, California has only executed 13 people since 1976. The last execution occurred in 2006 on murderer Clarence Ray Allen, according to public records and MSN News.

California officials cannot deliver what they are sentencing considering the number of people on death row in comparison to how many death sentences are made each year.

Last year, 78 death sentences were given by California’s court systems compared to the 315 that were given in 1996, Dieter explained.

The cost of keeping one inmate in jail in 2012 is roughly $45,000. CNN also describes that Riverside County will charge prisoners a daily rate for their stay to increase finances for jails, yet, spend more annually on their food, health and medical expenses.

The state and taxpayers are paying an incredible amount of money to keep prisoners in jail. With this new bill, we will be spending an estimated additional $32 million. Clearly, that is not helping our economy.

Taxpayers are oblivious to the impact this will have on California. Over 500,000 Californians have signed a petition in support of passing this bill.

What we refuse to accept is the severity of the crimes the individuals on death row have committed. They were handed capital punishment for a legitimate reason, they are a threat to society.

For instance, The Green River Killer, Gary Leon Ridgeway, was sentenced to California’s death row for murdering 48 women and throwing their bodies into the Green River. He confidently admitted in his original statement to deputies in 2006: “I killed so many women I have a hard time keeping them straight.”

This man’s sentence was life without parole, a guaranteed job and will most likely die from old age, as most natural deaths occur. This is not fair to any victims of those on death row, the families of the victims or the inmates themselves for they deserve punishment equivalent to their crimes.

Although the state does not perform executions as often as states like Texas, it is reassuring to know that we have the option for hard criminals like Ridgeway who have no respect for human life.

jbrooks@the-telescope.com

Author: Jessica Brooks

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2 Comments

  1. The very acronym for the “SAFE” Act is bogus. The costs claimed by SAFE are exaggerated and the costs of the “SAFE” Act’s life imprisonment would be much more expensive due to life-time medical costs, the increased security required to coerce former death-row inmates to work, etc. The amount “saved” in order to help fund law enforcement is negligible and only for a short period of time. (It is nothing more than a bribe in a vain effort to obtain conservative votes.) Bottom line, the “SAFE” Act is another attempt by those who are responsible for the high costs and lack of executions to now persuade voters to abandon it. Obviously, the arguments of the proponents of the SAFE Act would disappear if the death penalty was carried forth in accordance with the law. Get the facts at http://cadeathpenalty.webs.com.

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  2. The arguments in support of the ballot measure to abolish the death penalty are exaggerated at best and, in most cases, misleading and erroneous. The Act would only make our prisons less safe for both other prisoners and prison officials, significantly increase the costs to taxpayers due to life-time medical costs, the increased security required to coerce former death-row inmates to work, etc. The amount “saved” in order to help fund law enforcement is negligible and only for a short period of time. Bottom line, the “SAFE” Act is an attempt by those who are responsible for the high costs and lack of executions to now persuade voters to abandon it on those ground. Obviously, these arguments would disappear if the death penalty was carried forth in accordance with the law. Get the facts at and supporting evidence at http://cadeathpenalty.webs.com.

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