An execution was videotaped in Georgia last week

07/26/2011
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Andrew-Grant-DeYoung-007
… and the first thing I did was try to find it online. Where it wasn’t available. Which disappointed me. Because I believe in eye-for-an-eye justice and that people who rail against capital punishment are so inherently misguided. I’ve written about that more times than I care to remember. And every time, they’ve fired back about how innocent people get killed and how it’s cruel to kill and kumbaya my lord kumbaya. To which I always say fix the mechanism by which the death penalty is given, don’t scrap it altogether on heartstring-tugging grounds.

Gary Heidnik deserved to die.

So do those who kill children.

Survivors shouldn’t live in a world where a jury’s death verdict means nothing more than decades of expensive appeals with no real chance of execution.

These are facts.

Which brings us to the New York Times story about Andrew Grant DeYoung …

[T]he video recording of Mr. DeYoung’s death, the first since 1992, has once again raised the possibility that executions might be made available for all to see. In the process, it has reignited a widespread debate about how bright a light to shine on one of the most secretive corners of the criminal justice system.

Legal experts say the decision by Judge Bensonetta Tipton Lane of Fulton County Superior Court to allow the taping in Mr. DeYoung’s case opens the way for defense lawyers across the country to push for the video documentation of other executions. And it is inevitable, many experts believe, that some of those recordings will make their way onto television or even YouTube, with or without the blessings of a court.

Brian Kammer, a defense lawyer who argued for allowing Mr. DeYoung’s execution to be recorded, said that documenting the death was essential because of the controversy over the drugs used in lethal injections.

“We’ve had three botched lethal injections in Georgia prior to Mr. DeYoung, and we thought it was time to get some hard evidence,” Mr. Kammer said.

To which I say go ahead and show ‘em. If seeing someone get the punishment they deserve turns public opinion one way or another on the issue, so be it. But enough of the incessant whining about how an innocent person might get executed while ignoring the fact that the logical thing to do is reserve capital punishment for the most egregious cases.

Like, for instance, killing your parents and 14-year-old sister.

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