The United States is usually known for being the enemy of certain non-democratic states, including such places as Syria, China, Iran and North Korea. But in some cases, we put aside our differences and work with these “evil” powers to get things done. It is unfortunate, however, that what we are seeking to get done as of late is the blocking of a UN resolution that will place an international moratorium on capital punishment.
It’s fairly obvious that many of the states who voted no against the resolution would have done so. China has a massive number of executions each year, numbering around 1000. North Korea, Syria and the others are equally reluctant to give up their right to kill citizens when the situation demands it. But the United States? Well, we really don’t like to be told what it do, apparently, even when it involves something as harsh as killing people to remove them from society.
Currently, the U.S. ranks #5 in the world for number of deaths from capital punishment. That is (at least officially) ahead of even the DPRK. We’ve held this “prestigious” title for three years and only the future will determine whether we change our ways. As for now, we hold onto our right to execute as if it were one of the key purposes our founding fathers intended in forming our democratic state.
Most of the world has already gone beyond this point and the death penalty is widely regarded as a human rights violation. But still we persist in defending it, even to the point of siding with our sworn enemies. This is despite the fact that studies have shown that the majority of those who fall victim to capital punishment are minorities and the poor - those who begin their lives in bad positions within society.
It’s time for a wake-up call to the U.S. Capital punishment is not the standard anymore, no more than slavery was 150 years ago when we tried to defend that practice. In a predominantly Christian nation, you’d think that there would be a greater outcry against killing other human beings, regardless of their crimes. If we don’t move ahead, we will only drag out the inevitable and make ourselves look worse in the process of defending this outdated concept.