LWV supports

death penalty repeal

Dear Editor:

The Wyoming League of Women Voters supports House Bill 145, “Death Penalty Repeal-2,” now in the Senate Judiciary Committee for these five reasons:

1. The Innocence Project has led to the exoneration of 364 prisoners nationwide, using DNA evidence. The state should not execute innocent people.

2. Death penalty trials and convictions are far more expensive than other cases. They take more attorneys, more research, more time, and have more appeals. In the end many people sentenced to death are not executed. The expense does not produce the promised goal.

3. At one time, people believed the death penalty was a deterrent to crime. Currently, experts disagree.

4. The death penalty is more commonly given to people of color than it is to whites, and they are more commonly executed. It is not equal justice.

5. The methods used are not consistently effective—people have been strangled, decapitated, incinerated, suffocated, or have bled to death. The state should not be torturing people.

Luckily Wyoming has avoided many of the problems of more populated states with death row inmates--Texas, Florida, or Illinois. We should ensure that we continue to do so.

For more information on the death penalty, visit Opposing Viewpoints at gowyld.net, accessible with your library card. A particularly striking argument is made in Rizer, Arthur, and Marc Hyden. “A Dying Shame: The state is not God, and the death penalty is not infallible.” The American Conservative, Nov.-Dec. 2018, p. 47+. Opposing Viewpoints in Context, https://link.galegroup.com/apps/doc/A559832460/OVIC?u=wylrc_wyomingst&sid=OVIC&xid=7875838b. Accessed 8 Feb. 2019. Note how current the article is.

Contact your senator (www.wyoleg.gov) and urge them to support HB 145.

Susan M. Simpson (LWVWY President), Laramie

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