Copyright 1994 - 2018 Bill's Bible Basics
Authored By :
Published On :
July 3, 2001
Last Updated :
October 19, 2012
Support And Personal Attachment, Put Yourself In Their Place, An Imperfect System, Be Persuaded In Your Own Mind
Another reason why I am personally still hesitant to endorse the death penalty is simply this: As I have pointed out on previous occasions, with many people, it is easy to say that they endorse something which they might ordinarily find dis- tasteful, such as abortion, or the death penalty, because in their hearts, they know that they will never be the actual person to perform the abortion, or to press the button which will begin the flow of deadly drugs into a person's vein. In short, the dirty work will be left to someone else, who they will never know; and the victim, whether it is an aborted fetus, or the person who is strapped into the gurney, will also be someone whom they will normally never know. So then, because they are distanced from the actual event itself, and because there is normally no personal attachment to the deed, any negative feelings of guilt which may be associated with the event are very minimal, if not absent altogether; and so they feel safe in saying that they support such a practice.
But let's suppose for a minute that you had to witness the actual abortion; or that you even had to perform it yourself, and tear that innocent creature apart, limb by limb; or jab a pair of scissors into its head, and suck out its brain so that it died. Or let's suppose that you had to stand there and watch a person die by lethal injection; or that you had to be the actual person who administered the lethal drugs into their vein. That makes a very big difference, doesn't it? You are no longer just a spectator from afar; you are now an actual participant. Under such conditions, do you honestly believe that your feeling of support would be as strong for such things?
This is what I had to ask myself; and in both cases, due to my strong Christian background, whether it was performing an abortion, or causing a person to die by lethal injection, my answer was a definite "no!". I know in my heart that I could never do either; and if I feel so strongly that it is wrong for me personally to do it, then it is hypocritical of me to think that it is okay for another person to do it in my place.
Now obviously, we all know that there are some people who would answer with a strong affirmative in both of these situations. Millions of abortions happen worldwide every single year, and there were people who were thankful to be able to participate in Timothy McVeigh's execution; either by being there behind a tinted glass window, or by watching from hundreds of miles away via a satellite link-up. Some of these people did not hide the fact that they were there be- cause they wanted vengeance, while others stated that they hoped that McVeigh's execution would bring closure to their lives; but I must really wonder if that is what they will truly experience. It certainly won't bring their loved ones back, which is the true cause of their pain.
As a final point, what also causes me to hesitate to endorse the death penalty, is the simple fact that human government, human law, and human procedure, is not perfect. In fact, as I pointed out earlier, in some cases, it is quite corrupt. From what I have read in the mass media, there have been a considerable number of legal errors made, which have sadly resulted in persons being executed, who were in fact later found to be innocent. Other accused convicts have sat on Death Row for years, in a constant state of mental torment, only to be finally released, without the slightest apology from those who erroneously placed them there to begin with.
How in the world can anyone possibly live with the knowledge that they erroneously sent someone to their death, or at least caused them to spend half their life behind prison bars, due to a failure in the system, such as withheld or delayed information, tainted evidence, or some other factor? In the words of the Apostle Paul, perhaps what it really comes down to is this:
". . . Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind."
Romans 14:5, KJV
In other words, I cannot answer for you, just as you cannot answer for me; but someday, we will all have to answer to the Lord.
With these thoughts I will bring this article to a close. I hope that you have found it informative, and I pray that it has been a blessing and an inspiration in your life, whether you agree with my personal position or not. If you have enjoyed reading this article, please consider sharing its URL with your online friends. If you have an account with Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Tumblr, etc, I would also appreciate if you would take the time to click on the corresponding link that is found on this page. Thanks so much, and may God bless you abundantly!
For additional information and further study, you may want to refer to the list of reading resources below which were also mentioned in this article, or which are related to the topics which were discussed in this article. All of them are also located on this very same Bill's Bible Basics website:
The Gay and Lesbian Agenda: To the Point!