I have very much appreciated the leadership and reasoning which has flowed from the administration of President Joe Biden. I have been in agreement with most of the policy goals and means to reach them.
Until this morning.
I read that the Biden administration is asking the US Supreme Court to reinstate the death penalty against Dzhokhar Tsarnaev for the Boston Marathon bombings that killed three people and wounded hundreds more.
In a 48-page brief, the Department of Justice said the jury concluded that Tsarnaev’s role in the 2013 bombings warranted the death sentence and that verdict should be respected and reinstated.
I strongly disagree.
Among the many reasons I have supported Biden over the years is his rejection of the death penalty. He campaigned in 2020 on the elimination of this barbaric and cruel punishment. The reason his stand was so admired is that the past occupant of the White House put 12 men and one woman to death, the last one executed a mere five days before Biden took the oath of office.
We see what lust for blood looks like, and feels like. It is most unseemly.
In the Department brief, it is noted that the evidence of Tsarnaev’s independence, from his brother who was also central in the bombing, is overwhelming. Therefore, JOJ is asking for the execution.
No one is stating that this man is innocent of the charges, not horrendously immoral, and must face a form of punishment. But we simply do not have, as leaders or citizens, the right to kill another person for the intent of either sending a message of deterrence or meting out punishment. That action is far above the pay grade of any human.
The fact we find some criminal acts to be so barbaric that some wish to turn to death as a way to make a statement about how society feels is a natural one. It is a base reaction. But laws are made to curtail base reactions of people. While I can understand how upset people can be over the Boston Marathon bombing, as an example, I can not understand those who wish to translate feelings of anger to an execution.
As a nation, we must not allow ourselves to taken over by the darker forces that are a part of the human make-up. We must always strive to be better than those in society who have failed so miserably to live up to a certain code of conduct that we all know to be the best way to live.
President Biden is the first person sitting in the Oval Office to openly, and correctly, oppose the death penalty. I have urged on this blog there must first be a cessation of scheduling new executions. Secondly, and most importantly there must be a shredding of the death penalty from U.S. statutes.
So to read that the Biden administration is seeking to move forward with a federal execution is awful news. Placing someone in prison for life is the only reasonable way to proceed for those who commit the ultimate crime in our society. Then allow for God to be the final judge on the matter. The government should not be in the business of taking a life.
And so it goes.