Time to focus on death penalty repeal -- Gazette.Net


Unlike The Gazette’s editorial [“Repeal the death penalty,” Dec. 6], I am optimistic that Maryland will abolish the death penalty this year.

It is time for Maryland to stop trying to fix the death penalty and focus on repeal. The editorial correctly points out that there are some compelling arguments to repeal the death penalty, including that it is costly, it creates a burden on victims and it demonstrates racial discrimination. Even the execution methods are controversial.

Executions have been on hold in Maryland since 2006 due to a problem in how the death chamber protocols were adopted. And changes to the death penalty law adopted in 2009 have created even more confusion about which cases are even eligible to become capital cases.

Enough is enough. Maryland no longer can afford to limp along with this broken system. It is time for the General Assembly to follow in the footsteps of other states, such as Connecticut, Illinois, New Mexico, New York and New Jersey, that have abolished the death penalty in recent years.

Frances Toler, Mount Rainier