Tuesday, December 4, 2012

#41 ain't just a Dave Matthews title. Wish it were.

People should be forced to notice every time we execute someone in this country. It appears today will be the day for George Ochoa as the state of Oklahoma prepares to kill him. (I have looked in Oklahoma news sites and have not yet seen confirmation that the execution has taken place or when it is/was scheduled for.)

It still sends chills up my spine every time we do this. I can't wrap my head around the fact that we as a society intentionally and with premeditation put people to death. If this one happens today as scheduled, it will be the 6th of 2012 in Oklahoma and the 41st nationwide. That's more people than can be on an expanded September baseball roster. It's almost a professional football team. 41 people is a lot of people.  And we've killed them all.

What's even worse is that this is a relatively low number of executions for a year. Per the Death Penalty Information Center, since the beginning of the modern death penalty era (1976-present), we've had as many as 98 executions in one year. I don't appreciate that this fact leaves me feeling at least a little grateful that we've "only" managed to kill 41 this year. One person intentionally killed by the state is too many.

Oh, what I wouldn't give for us as a nation to get past this barbarity.

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