Should Scott Roeder Face the Death Penalty?

scott roederLast week I reported that Scott Roeder, the man accused of killing Dr. George Tiller, could possibly use a “justifiable homicide” defense when he goes to trial later this month. Roeder has been charged with first-degree murder and aggravated assault in state court. Under Kansas law, murder is not a capital case unless the murder is committed in the process of committing another crime, or if the victim is a law enforcement office. Roeder is not going to face the death penalty when he goes to trial, which has angered some pro-choice activists. However, the question of whether or not he should be eligible for capital punishment is worth considering anyway.

Paul Hill, an anti-abortion wing nut who murdered Dr. Bayard Britton, an abortion provider in Florida, was executed by lethal injection in 1994. His execution, and the precedent that it sets for Scott Roeder, brings up a very important question for pro-choice advocates. Should people who are convicted of killing abortion providers face the death penalty?

I am personally opposed to the death penalty. I don’t think the state should be in the business of killing people, whether its in the form of military violence, police brutality, or executions. From a purely ethical standpoint, how can you punish someone for killing another person by killing them? It’s a moral contradiction. From a monetary standpoint, it costs lest to incarcerate a person for life than it does to kill them. So if you want to break it down to pure dollars and cents, go for the lifetime sentence. [Read more...]