Dear Editor,

In the fall of 2017, a Wisconsin community was shaken when a quiet household was invaded, two adults murdered in cold blood, and a young girl kidnapped. But after three months, she managed to escape, and the murderer was caught. Now the trial has been concluded; the killer pied guilty and will be in prison for the remainder of his natural life. The surviving victim is safe with relatives. Case closed.

Oh?

The young kidnaping victim is now an orphan, and has basically lost her early childhood. Her life has been horribly scarred and marred. Never will she forget the terror of that night, and what she lost. She is fearful of going out in public, and has trouble sleeping at night. She will graduate from high school in a few years, but dad and mom won’t be there. College? Likely, but when she receives her diploma, there will be no proud parents present. She may eventually get married, but-no mother of the bride and father of the bride to share in the joys. Then possibly, a little one, but with no maternal grandparents to spoil the child.

The entire community are victims, with three months of horror and anguish, followed by community ­wide rejoicing for her escape, but lasting grief for what has been forever lost.

But there is another large group of victims. While the killer is locked up, he will be provided with food, clothing, and shelter with medical care-all expenses paid. He will be kept safe with round-the-clock armed guards, but not at his expense. What kind of “punishment” is that? Maybe he has parents who can occasionally pay him a visit. A young man in his early 20s could possibly live another 50 years, with that kind of care. The other victims are all of us taxpayers who will have to shell out millions of our hard-earned dollars for his care. And this kind of travesty of justice is common in most of our states.

Many years ago, the people of Wisconsin voted to be humanitarian, and end the “barbaric” practice of capital punishment. Billions of tax money have been shelled out ever since, to support people who have been found guilty of capital crimes and no longer deserve to live. The lack of capital punishment is not humane, it is insane. This writer has heard many of the arguments for “clemency”, and they are all hogwash. Capital punishment for capital crimes is justice. Justice for all of society.

 

Donald Smith

Marinette