In a strange twist of fate a federal judge has ruled that California’s death penalty is unconstitutional, unless it’s being performed by a police officer at the scene. But what really got me was the justification:
LA QUINTA, Calif. — A federal judge ruled Wednesday that California’s death penalty system is so arbitrary and plagued with delay that it is unconstitutional, a decision that is expected to inspire similar arguments in death penalty appeals around the country.
The state has placed hundreds of people on death row, but has not executed a prisoner since 2006. The result, wrote Judge Cormac J. Carney of United States District Court, is a sentence that “no rational jury or legislature could ever impose: life in prison, with the remote possibility of death.”
That sense of uncertainty and delay, he wrote, “violates the Eighth Amendment’s prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment.”
So it’s cruel and unusual punishment to sentence somebody to death and then never kill him? It seems to me that sentencing somebody to death and then fucking killing him would be more cruel (although not unusual in this country).
I know if I was on death row I’d be totally cool with not being executed.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad this ruling was handed down since I don’t believe an organization crime syndicate such as the state has the right to execute somebody. But the reason given is just bizarre in my opinion.