"Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough."
You can't "make up" for decades spent in prison.
I hear this argument - that we shouldn't execute people on the chance that they may be innocent - all the time and I think it's bs. The glaring flaw is that you're basing your sentencing on the premise that the individual may be innocent. But if you're going to do that, the only logical conclusion is that you shouldn't punish them at all. That's the fundamental underlying principle of our judicial system - innocent until proven guilty. If you are acknowledging that an individual may still be innocent, then you have absolutely no grounds to be sentencing them at all.
If you don't like the fact that innocent people are getting convicted, then look to fix the flaws in the trial process that are allowing for it, not the sentencing. Treat the cause, not the symptom.
It's interesting that the death penalty is seen as a "conservative" issue. I'd think that they'd be the last ones to want to allow the government to put people to death.
But, then, there are a lot of apparent contradictions in the left vs right political model.
Can't we just turn Congress off and then turn it back on again?
You can't "make up" for decades spent in prison, but at least you've got time left if you're exonerated and released. It's a compromise, not a solution. There isn't a solution.
But, if you like, I will just shift my argument to the individuals who are innocent and never get exonerated. They spend their entire life wrongly imprisoned. Shouldn't we stop imposing life prison sentences to avoid such situations?