I’m trying. I really am. Hillary Clinton has conceded the nomination to Barack Obama, and as so many people keep telling me, he’s way better than that other guy, John McCain. But when I vote in November, I would love to vote for Obama and feel good about it, rather than … “meh, he’s o.k.”
But lately it seems that on issue after issue, Obama disappoints me. The latest came yesterday when he publicly announced his disagreement with the Supreme Court decision barring states from executing criminals guilty of child rape. Now don’t get me wrong — this is a horrible, despicable crime, and society should deal with those guilty of this crime in the strongest manner possible. But when the government starts killing people who didn’t kill, when we start killing people for crimes that do not involve murder, we begin a deep descent into a special place in Hell.
At a press conference yesterday, Obama said:
I think that the rape of a small child, 6 or 8 years old, is a heinous crime and if a state makes a decision that under narrow, limited, well-defined circumstances the death penalty is at least potentially applicable, that that does not violate our Constitution.
Obama agrees with Chief Justice John Roberts, Justices Samuel Alito, Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas — all dissenters in this case.
There are so many reasons why the death penalty is wrong. Even if you agree with it in theory, you must acknowledge the Chicago Tribune description:
Who gets a sentence of life and who gets death is often a matter of random luck, of politics, of geography, even a matter of racism. Mistakes can occur at every level of the process.
As a state Senator, Obama was a proponent of death penalty reform because he understood the many problems with it as a truly just sentence. From Talk Left:
While an Illinois state senator, Obama was key in getting the state’s notorious death penalty laws changed, including a requirement that in most cases police interrogations involving capital crimes must be recorded.
The changes enacted in 2003 reformed a system that had sent 13 people to death row, only to have them released because they were later determine to be innocent or had been convicted using improper methods.
“Without Barack’s energy, imagination and commitment I do not believe the very substantial and meaningful reforms that became law in Illinois would have taken place,” said author Scott Turow, a member of the state commission that recommended many of the changes.
Surely he understands that the problems were not unique to the state of Illinois. How can he now stand before us and say there should be more executions in this country?
I really am trying to like this guy, but he disappoints again. Because the guy who was supposed to be all about “change” looks more and more like the guy who’s walking down the middle of the road.
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