Friday, December 14, 2007

Abolishment of Death Penalty in NJ Probably Good Thing

As you may or may not know, New Jersey has decided to abolish the death penalty in our state. This is probably a good thing.

Why do I say "probably", you wonder? How can someone who treasures human life as much as I do not rejoice at this news? Simple- I'm human, and I've had tragedy touch my life. When I was younger, someone I cared about was murdered. Yes, murdered. She was shot by someone who wanted her to give him her purse. It was someone she knew. It was someone I knew. He used to throw rocks at girls waiting for the school bus. I didn't know what made him the way he was, he just was. When I found out, I wanted him dead. I wanted his toenails pulled out and his feet set on fire while he watched. I wanted him to suffer the way he had made so many other people suffer by snuffing out the life of a wonderful woman.

My point is, that when you're touched by crime, you lose your ability to keep a clear head. These feelings can pretty much stay with you for life. I was 14 when that happened, but I still remember the hate. This is not a good reason to make a decision, but it's why I've never opposed the death penalty being on the table. Often I'm not in favor of it - I can't be. Killing others is wrong, with very few exceptions. Exceptions do, however, exist, and the part of me that still wishes for revenge wanted the option open.

So, like I said, not having a death penalty in New Jersey is probably a good thing, but I find myself curiously detached from the news.

The teenager who shot my teacher, by the way, came to a bad end. The story I heard was that he "shot himself" when the police came for him. Yes, it was told to me with those quotation marks. I was glad, and I'm ashamed of that.

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