Today we’re going to talk about the death penalty.
This is not just one of the most controversial parts of our current justice system, it’s also a part of our justice system that I’ve personally engaged with, during one of the worst times in my family’s life.
I don’t want to get into the details right here, right now-- long story short, my sister was killed by a man she worked with. (You can find a news story about the crime, here.)
I can’t even begin to tell you how Michaela’s murder hurt us. She was the only girl in our family, with a giant heart, who had unfortunately struggled as an adult with alcohol problems. None of us could fathom her death, let alone her murder. Anyone who’s lost a loved one to sudden violence knows the devastating unreality of coming to terms that your loved one is gone, and in the most brutal way.
But it happened.
And when our family began communicating with the prosecutor about what kind of justice we sought for Michaela, I was unshaken in my belief.
Although it would have been on the table if we had asked for it, I did not want to pursue the death penalty, not even for the man who had so cruelly taken my baby sister away from us.
I believe that two wrongs don’t make a right.
I believe that our justice system should begin a journey back towards its initial imperative: rehabilitation, not retribution.
The death penalty is obviously the latter.
Not only does having such an archaic, eye for an eye form of punishment undermine the mission of our justice system-- we know of all too many cases where the courts got it wrong, and murdered innocent people.
One innocent life lost to a mistake by our justice system would be enough to convince me that the death penalty must be abolished.
But it’s more than that, too.
The death penalty is expensive. You can find more information about that, here: https://deathpenaltyinfo.org/policy-issues/costs and here: https://deathpenaltyinfo.org/policy-issues/costs/summary-of-states-death-penalty
Basically, just like in the case of incarcerating non-violent marijuana offenders, the death penalty comes at too high of a cost for us to continue it. If we abolished the death penalty, millions of state dollars could flood back into our communities, to make them a better place to live.
Whenever we talk about improvements to our communities, there’s always someone asking, “Well, who will pay for it?”
The answer is-- we already are. We’re just not seeing our money get spent wisely.
I will make it my mission to make sure that our tax dollars go toward community improvements, not bloated and corrupt “justice” efforts.
Will you consider supporting my mission, by donating to my campaign? I need everyday people like you, because I don’t have the same kind of support that the Republican incumbent or Trump’s crony candidate have. I’m the only Democrat fighting back, and I need people like you to help me stand up and say we’re not giving up on Northeast Ohio.
Thank you for reading. I can’t tell you how much it means to me just to know that you’re hearing me out.