Troy Davis Execution Proves We Should Have Public Stonings

Whether you believe in the death penalty or you don't, the execution of Troy Davis on September 21 in Georgia was wrong. Even if you believe in "an eye for an eye" and you believe that some people deserve to die for their crimes, you can't possibly believe that killing a potentially innocent man is the right thing to do.

Simply put: It's barbaric.

If we're going to be barbarians and practice cruel and unusual punishment, then why not return to hanging or stoning as a means of execution? Let's start stoning people publicly. And to those who worry it's over the top, here is a question: How is it any less barbaric than what we've done here to Troy Davis?

Innocent or not, we trampled over facts and rushed to kill. And why? For what? Gandhi is often quoted as having said: "An eye for an eye leaves everyone blind." And it's the truth. What good came from killing Davis?


Was justice really served? The death penalty may be great in theory, but in practice, it's sick, barbaric, and shameful.

So maybe if we had public executions, some people might come to truly understand what it means that the government is actually snuffing out a human life. No matter how sweet they make it with sedatives and "lethal injections," killing is killing. In the end, does it really matter if you were shot or stabbed if you're dead?

Maybe the Republican debates would be less full of cheer when the topic of the death penalty is broached if people actually saw it. If we saw the neck snap or the skin break and start to bleed, maybe we would be less likely to cheer it in the abstract.

Although no one was cheering Wednesday night at 11:08 p.m. What happened was a travesty and one that shouldn't be in vain. If we're ever to be able to look ourselves in the face again, we need to ask why we balk at the thought of stonings. Why do we view the cultures who practice it as so beneath us? The fact is, our state-sanctioned deaths are the same.

Until our government proves that they actually care who is guilty and who isn't, then they don't need to have the ultimate power over who lives and who dies. And if they continue to execute, then we should do it just like they do in Iran. After all, who are we to call anyone barbaric?

Let's return to public execution. Then we'll see how many people really support government-sanctioned murder.

Do you support the death penalty?


Image via Aleatoric Consonance/Flickr

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