The biggest Christmas gift of the year was the gift of life to several New Jersey death row inmates. The governor signed a law this week that abolished the death sentence in New Jersey. This comes as no surprise to me. New Jersey is one of those states on the East Coast that is overpopulated. I’m sure that in the near future the sentence for murder will only be a couple of weeks of community service. Who knows? In the future they may even be paying people to commit murder in an attempt to thin out the surplus population.
I suspect we are going to see a number of folks moving to New Jersey with their spouse or business partner, so when they bump them off there will be no threat of the needle. Mark Twain once wrote a great story called, “The Facts Concerning the Recent Carnival of Crime in Connecticut.” It’s about a guy who battles his conscience and wins. Because he no longer has a conscience he goes about killing those he doesn’t like with impunity. The conscience is a great deterrent to crime. Most of these guys on death row don’t have a conscience, so they are like the fellow in Connecticut. The death penalty was a good deterrent for them. The book, “In Cold Blood” by Truman Capote is a good book to read about how these sociopathic killers come to be.
One of the inmates in New Jersey is the killer responsible for Megan’s Law. This fiend, Jesse Timmendequas, lived next to Megan Kauka, a 7 year old girl. He was a repeated, violent sexual offender who kidnapped, raped and murdered Megan. The Megan’s law was passed as a result of this heinous act. Megan’s Law requires repeat sex offenders to notify local law enforcement of any change of address or employment. Timmendequas will probably be released for good behavior in the next couple of years. I sure hope he obeys Megan’s Law and lets his new neighbors know about his presence.
The death penalty is probably cruel and unusual punishment for a guy like Timmendequas. Another argument against the death penalty is that an innocent person may be put to death by mistake. If Susan Sarandon and the Governor of New Jersey had been around 2000 years ago the course of history may have been entirely different. Back then the most innocent man who ever lived was put to death, but the death provided the opportunity for mankind to be saved, even Jesse Timmendequas. Maybe New Jersey is right with their new law.
I’m glad I live on the back porch in Texas rather than New Jersey. Here we dispose of them pretty quickly. If I was like the fellow Mark Twain wrote about, I might be tempted to take a few people I have known on a trip to the Garden State. Merry Christmas!!