Last night, Clayton Lockett died of a massive heart attack, writhing in pain, during a failed lethal injection to end his life. He had been convicted of murdering a 19-year-old girl and watching his friends bury her alive. Now, you tell me which is more gruesome? When I think of someone murdering my family, I'd hope they would be thankful for a heart attack. Aside from me getting my hands on them, I'd want them to know horrible pain. However, what I think and what I'd actually expect the state to do are two different things.
As a one-time believer (and one well-versed in its teachings) in the Christian faith, I find it hard to accept killing someone as a path toward my own (or their) redemption. Martin Luther King said it best: violence begets violence. Jesus Christ said, "for all those that draw the sword shall die by the sword" Matthew 26:52. Should we be killing our violent criminals? Does it really cause less violence?
The debate has opened up and PBS completed an excellent broadcast and discussion of this case and the death penalty. For more information see the video from CNN...
Personally, I don't have an answer. When I think of the job of a politician there are some things I just wouldn't want to touch. This is one of them... I'm torn.