Death Penalty

Death penalty: (n) punishment by death for a crime

I am so happy that life is more like a motion picture than a brochure of photo shopped stills.

Honestly, if you had frozen my face, attitudes and beliefs at any one particular time in my life, I not only might have been contrary to you, but also at odds with my present incarnation.

There’s just too much to learn on this journey to ever be certain.

“Certain” is the profile taken by either fools or people who have enough money to pay for an alibi.

So I will freely tell you—there was a time when I was favorable, if not an advocate, for the death penalty.

My reasoning was not vengeance.

Rather, I cited the case of Charles Manson. I felt he was given a cruel and unusual punishment by having to live inside his own tormented brain the rest of his life. It seemed to me that capital punishment in a situation like that would actually be merciful.

Folks would “ooh and aah” over my insight–and I felt that I succeeded in killing off the bad guys and looking genteel at the same time.

Then one day, I opened the Good Book and read the story of Cain and Abel. According to this volume, Cain killed his brother, Abel, generating the first murder case.

When God caught up with Cain and spoke to him, He asked him why he was hiding and tried to get him to tell the truth. Though not totally successful, God, who had the power to take his life, instead exiles Cain. He goes, starts his own family and continues his breathing.

This gave me pause.

If God, who had a slam-dunk murder case against Cain, chose to give him the opportunity to live out a new possibility, who in the hell was I to lobby for the death of another soul?

I am not trying to insinuate that rehabilitation is successful.

I don’t think that someone who is massively cruel deserves to continue existing.

I just know that God chose not to execute the first murderer.

And He’s really the only judge,

For we all know there are many roads and detours before we arrive at our destination.


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