Fast Focus: 'What do you think of Gov. Inslee suspending the death penalty?' Safe, merciful communities As a registered Independent, I applaud Gov. Inslee's decision and note that it does not surprise me. After all, even a stopped clock is right twice a d

February 23, 2014 

Bad people -- people bad enough to have murdered other people -- I do not want on my street, nor in my community. Much too much tragedy around me without having someone nearby ready to reach for a lethal weapon to solve his or her problems. I want a high wall, several feet thick, topped with razor wire, between the violent and the calmer, warmer, more rational brand of citizen.

But what to do with those individuals who live outside the constraints of law and order and commit heinous acts of violence on their fellow man? Shall we, as society has practiced since Hammurabi's time, snuff them via injections, electricity, or with rope? They have demonstrated the inability, by circumstances or heredity, to live in a world that forbids them to maim and kill.

Better to isolate the felons who have killed. Note, I have not advocated society giving these prisoners a leg up to the afterlife. There have been too many cases of incarceration of innocents who later have been found not to have committed the crime for which they were sent to prison. On that alone I would agree with Gov. Inslee's decision to set aside the death penalty.

"There but for the grace of God go I," history credits John Bradford with saying. I remember this expression to see the homeless, Walla-walled up, unemployed, or hospitalized; none of us are too far from a similar fate.

Have a nice day. Better yet, have a merciful one.

-- BINK OWEN, Walla Walla

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