The title to this post is the writing prompt suggested by post-a-day.
I think I would have to say yes.
I know many of my closest friends would not agree with me, and have strong feelings about what they call “legalized murder.” But there is one fact I can’t forget. Some crimes are so heinous the only halfway appropriate punishment is the death of the perpetrator. For instance, I believe anyone who rapes and murders a child should be put to death. Instantly.
The problem with our current system is that it is never instant. Never. Criminals are kept on death row for years. They are put through an agony of waiting and uncertainty. While they wait, the government (taxpayers – you and me) pay enormous amounts of money. Maximum security cells cost from $60,000 to $75,000 per year. Because of the additional cost of lengthy trials and appeals, a child murderer may cost the taxpayers two million dollars or more before he is put to death OR wins a final appeal and is given life without parole.
If he wins that final appeal the costs will continue until he dies of natural causes. Forty or fifty years at $60,000 each. Inmates serving life without parole have very little incentive to become model prisoners. Sometimes they hurt other prisoners, guards, or themselves.
Some say the death penalty is not a deterrent because states where the death penalty is used the most do not have the lowest crime rates. But one thing is certain: the murderer who pays with his own life will never kill again.