Although I am against the death penalty for many reasons, I believe that, logically, this was a bad decision. The court decided on whether numbers which define retardation were inexact enough to prevent the death penalty from being applied, when they should have decided whether or not the perpetrator knew what he was doing when he committed the murder. Retarded or not, if he knew what he was doing, and knew it was wrong, then he is guilty enough to receive the punishment, and IQ tests, whether flawed or not, should not matter at all. Period.(CNN) -- Florida cannot use a hard cutoff on a convict's IQ as the sole basis for determining eligibility for execution, a divided U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday.
The 5-4 decision favored a Florida death-row inmate who supporters say is intellectually disabled.
The court struck down the state's requirement that a baseline "threshold" IQ score of 70 must be established before a capital prisoner can present additional evidence supporting claims of a disability.
At issue was how states may define mental retardation -- within the context of inexact IQ tests -- when determining whether convicted murderers deserve capital punishment.
However wrongly decided this decision was, though, this does make the death penalty a little harder to apply. Hopefully, this is a small step towards the day when capital punishment is ended, and we are no longer in company that includes nations like Iran, North Korea, and Saudi Arabia. After all, we are not savages. We are Americans, are we not?
Article is here.