Government has many responsibilities. The preamble to the constitution mentions ‘domestic tranquility” as one. What does that mean – generally we think of maintaining order in a civilized manner. And we maintain order with the rule of law. The rule of law is much better than the rule of Monarchy or dictatorship, or no rule at all – anarchy. When Katrina struck New Orleans and the Police went home to take care of their families the areas experienced a short burst of anarchy – no law at all.
Law defines in specific terms what sort of behavior is not acceptable. United States law provides for objective judgment and punishment that is not ‘cruel or unusual.’ Punishment is a negative motivator and is an essential motivator for behavior modification. Yes – I believe that punishment is in itself ‘correctional.’
The Death Penalty is used as punishment for certain heinous crimes. Whether the death penalty is moral or not is for another post. This is very serious business – as serious as government gets – and this post is intended in no way to discredit the seriousness. For today we are only going to consider the death penalty as a political tool for candidates to get elected. I will keep it simple and to the point.
This is an issue that disgusts me about the Republican Party. Those folks running for the Republican nomination for President fall all over themselves bragging about their application of the death penalty. Mike Huckabee proudly states that while Governor of Arkansas he sanctioned the execution of 16 people. Proudly, as if this is an honorable testament in the life of his Christian Ministry. When George Bush was Governor of Texas he bragged about his willingness to take a life. We can see the affect of this mentality in the office of President.
What is wrong with the Republicans? They talk about executions like Tom Brady and Peyton Manning talk about touchdowns. The trivializing of killing another human for political gain is contemptible.
Right or Wrong – executing another person is not a victory for society. This sad commentary on America should be treated with solemn discourse. Every time an execution takes place in American the Republican evangelicals collectively do the ‘wave’, celebrating God’s victory over evil.