The Closure and Its Myths: Victims' Families and Problems with the Death Penalty

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Justice to a criminal should not be by a dragged out death by injection of drugs or an electric chair, but by a mental suffering of not knowing what will happen next. The death penalty isn't worth the money put into it. Killing off a criminal for a capital murder doesn't resolve anything, it causes more chaos and as we know, history that will keep repeating itself. Based on cost, criminal history with mental illness and forgiveness, states can abolish the death penalty and still have justice served. It may take longer, but it'll cost less and the criminal would've done it himself.

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The cost of keeping inmates imprisoned compared to killing those on death row is a dramatic difference. $740,000 is the amount of money used on a typical prisoner, while death row cases are as much as t $1.26 million. Not to mention, every death row prisoner adds up to $90,000 more for taxpayers to pay yearly.

Mental illness plays a big part in a criminals case or after. It is known that criminals with a mental illness imprisoned cost more than your everyday health criminal. Typically, criminals with known or pending diagnosis with an illness would serve longer time in jail. That due to the fact there is more to handle when it comes to those who can't process things does not enter the cell with a known case of depression, life behind bars can quickly change their views on life. AS of 2007, 21% of prisoners suffered from depression. Due to the lack of mental health care in prisons, they never got the proper treatment to help in getting their mind right which leads to more costs per mentally challenged inmate. What’s the point of going through all the struggle of paying to kill off a criminal, when eventually their minds will overload and do the job. Living with the guilt or memory of committing a crime is worse than the death penalty because you have to relive your wrong doings every day.

There are plenty of news breaking stories where families forgave those who took a loved one. Many ask "how could you forgive someone who may have taken someone personal away from you". Bill and Denise Richard, had a son who was a victim of the Boston bombing. After the death penalty was sentenced to Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the parents wrote a letter to take the death penalty “off the table”. In 2007, a study was done by criminologist Scott Vollum. 20% of families said the execution did not bring justice or closure to how they already felt. Many people see the death penalty as more of a revenge tactic. Even though many may believe the death penalty is the way to go, why have hate swallow you up the rest of your life? Forgiving isn't the victims' family saying they don't care it's them coming into terms with reality and having to go on and live life for the one they lost.The death penalty is cruel. So cruel families of victims even agree to get rid of it. Do you think if the justice system was perfect, and the death penalty as the right answer, people would go against it? No, there is clearly an issue. An issue so big, voices can't be heard over the rage filled deaths due to the death penalty. Voices need to be heard. It should be a sentence given by the victims' family not by a judge who isn't in pain or who isn't forgiving.

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