Death penalty is morally wrong

I'll vote to abolish the death penalty, as almost all modern societies have done, and not just because it is fiscally imprudent with unsustainable costs versus a life sentence without possibility of parole. More importantly -- just as we all agree, "Thou shalt not kill" -- it's morally wrong.

Making us and the state murderers -- through exercising the death penalty -- is a pure illogicality akin to saying "two wrongs make a right."

Worse, because juries and evidence are fallible, my Christian belief tells me it is better that we let 1,000 guilty murderers get life sentences than we kill even one innocent defendant.

We know 139 death-row inmates have been exonerated since 1973 and the death penalty is inconsistently and capriciously applied to minorities far more often than whites committing the same crime.

Lastly, with mandatory and spurious death penalty appeals stretching this sordid process out for 25 years or more, victims' families are denied closure. It is wiser to abolish the death penalty.

Ed Chainey

Richmond

Opposes repeal of the death penalty

If the death penalty proposition was modified to state that murder committed in the heat of the moment or the result of uncontrollable emotion is not subject to the death penalty, I would support it.

However, some crimes are so heinous -- premeditated murder; murder for profit; murder during the commission of another crime; rape/murder; child rape and murder; torture/murder; murder during terrorist activity; and kidnap/murder -- the perpetrators do not deserve to be allowed to contaminate our society, even in prison, with their presence.

Nevertheless, great care must be exercised that the accused is, in fact, guilty. It is a sin against the tenets of our civilization, and of God, to rush into a conviction that is not supported, beyond all doubt, with incontrovertible evidence.

Although most convictions of murderers are justified, there have been too many cases of passion, rather than facts, convicting a person. This must not be allowed to happen and a law that sends a falsely convicted person to death row or life in prison is not an acceptable solution.

Ernest Hampson

Pittsburg

Alternative is too expensive

I will be voting for the death penalty.

The alternatives to the death penalty are too expensive. It's cheaper to kill someone and not pay someone to guard them for the rest of their lives. And the appeal process costs too much; change that.

The argument that you might kill the wrong guy might have been valid 20 years ago when DNA was new, but now we can be 100 percent sure it's the right guy. The only way the death penalty will ever be a deterrent is to use it.

Bill Jones

Pleasant Hill

Mother of slain teen wants to keep penalty

As the mother of a teenager who was senselessly murdered, I will vote no on outlawing the death penalty in California. Enough said.

Gloria Gates

Fremont

Outlawing would send wrong kind of message

Outlawing the death penalty is eliminating a deterrent to commit major crimes. What kind of message would this send to criminals?

Jerry Collins

Antioch

Should not fight for the 'disgusting' murderers

The reason why it costs so much to execute convicted killers is that the ACLU and other left-wing organizations keep fighting for every disgusting murderer.

We should make those organization reimburse the taxpayers for all the extra costs, and the press should not actively solicit their opinions.

Gary Lavagnino

El Sobrante

A person who kills should be put to death

I will vote no on the measure to repeal the death penalty. To kill another human being is against the law and the person who killed another person should receive the death penalty.

My sister was murdered and the person found guilty was given 25 years to life in prison. He will be up for parole in 2015. The district attorney said he will be denied and will never leave prison.

She was killed in Nebraska, where the death penalty is only given in the case of a horrendous crime. In my eyes, death by strangulation is a horrendous crime.

He should have been put to death because her family and mine suffered a great lose. I will never forgive him and I will never get over the loss of my dear sister.

Those who want to repeal the death penalty have not experienced the pain of having a loved one taken.

Robert V. Beaudreau

Fremont

Death penalty is not a deterrent

I've been opposed to the death penalty for about 60 years.

It's a subject I've researched exhaustively. Rarely have I succumbed to the intense passion that's unavoidable when murder is discussed.

Unlike most people who support this punishment, I can discuss it intelligently and factually, and without the sarcasm and exaggeration that's usually an integral part of this argument.

There's no evidence capital punishment is a deterrent to murder. Its inherent flaws make it impossible to administer it without prejudice and to the exclusion of error.

Strident supporters of executions dismissively ignore the stark terror experienced by an innocent person who waits for the state to commit judicially sanctioned murder.

It's inarguable that substituting life imprisonment without the possibility of parole protects society, genuinely punishes murderers, and eliminates the dreadful possibility of executing an innocent person.

I flatly refuse to have the execution of an innocent person on my conscience. That moral judgment dictates my affirmative vote for Proposition 34.

Ronald Entwistle

San Pablo

election day LETTERS
Our deadline for receiving Election Day-related letters is Oct. 26. The last day Election Day-related letters will be published is Nov. 2. As of Monday, Oct. 22, we will only publish letters that support candidates.