Which is more compassionate and just?
a) To promptly execute murderers upon sentencing, or
b) To force society and the victim's family to support them in prison until they are released because of good behaviour or die of natural causes?
I guess you can tell from the way I have framed the questions where I would vote. Those who murder others, whether they are in their right mind or not, have forfeited their own life according to the same Christ who wrote the Old Testament.
It has been suggested that I have a harsh and unloving view of God's mercy and justice when I say that Andrea Yates should be put to death for her crime. I just don't see how continuing the mental anguish of this mother accomplishes justice in either human or divine terms. Even a murderer is made in the image of God, which is why we ought not to torture them but instead treat them with dignity and put them to death.
Misguided compassion that refuses to treat criminals with true justice (as defined by God's Word) in the end is unmerciful and humiliating. It reduces us all to the status of infants and it cheapens life on the horizontal plane. How much are five young lives worth? Only 25 years of a person's life, or less depending on where you are. In Canada, most lives are only worth 5 to 7 years or even nothing. The moral outrage over a dog being shot by some idiot who couldn't hit the side of a barn is worse in our community than the daily legalized slaughter of preborn babies.
I repeat, the mercy of the wicked is cruel. You don't have to take my word for it though. God is the One who originally said it.