There’s been a lot of talk lately about the death penalty, a sentence far more often handed down than actually carried out. In fact, Connecticut’s last actual execution came in 2005 (and it’s only one in something like 50 years), after an awful lot of hand-wringing, deliberations, and even last-minute attempts to ban the death penalty.
The death penalty seems like something Connecticut is fine with in concept, but actual executions make us a little more queasy.
Now the death penalty is under consideration again. The arguments for keeping executions as an option are that the death penalty acts as a deterrent, and that it’s better (and cheaper) to rid society of certain people once and for all, instead of letting them languish in prison for years. The argument against is that capital punishment is cruel, that it doesn’t work as a deterrent at all, and that the endless appeals process ends up costing the state far more money than lifetime imprisonment would. These are simplified arguments, of course, and I know that much more elaborate arguments for both sides will be made in the comments.
In any event, a bill to eliminate the death penalty passed the Judiciary Committee back in March, and legislators are expected to debate the measure soon. What do you think?