Execution expectation…

18marathon-web-master675Denise and Bill Richard have suffered an unimaginable loss. As a father, I shudder at the thought of the pain they must be feeling. So when Mr. and Mrs. Richard spoke out against the death penalty for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev last week, it gave me pause. After reading their statement however, I’m comfortable with their position and actually have a greater understanding of it.

On one hand, and as a former correctional officer at the state and federal levels, I can say with confidence that prison is neither the deterrent nor rehabilitative measure it was/is intended to be. There are many reasons for this, political and otherwise. (For now though, let’s just say I remain in awe of the CO’s and staff who manage to pull it off every day, providing the critical custody and control necessary to ensure the safety of the general public). On the other hand, and despite overwhelming evidence and a lack of remorse on behalf of the offender in this case, the idea that a sentence of death would actually be carried out fairly, and on a timetable consistent with true justice, is simply wishful thinking.

Consequently and whether you support the death penalty or not, the Richards lack of faith in “the system” is certainly understandable. To this quintessential American family, forever scarred by the violence of a brutal and insane ideology, the pain of reliving their loss every time that inhuman bastards name is mentioned during the appeal process would simply be too much to bear.

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