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KBSI Perspective
For those of you who have followed my comments over the past thirteen years, you know I am against the death penalty. Not because I am morally against it but because of the huge legal expense that comes with it. Appeal after appeal that can run into millions of dollars and drag out in some cases for decades. Everybody is happy now that Nidal Hasan, the Army psychiatrist convicted in the November 2009 shooting rampage in Fort Hood received the death penalty. I realize it is a military sentence but there has not been a serviceman executed by the military since 1961. He will get special treatment that will cost tens of thousands of dollars more to keep him in solitary confinement and the appellate process will take years and millions of dollars. He will die of old age or something else. We get to pay for it. This country has more people in prison that any other in the world and it comes right out of our pockets. The St. Louis Post Dispatch had an editorial last week discussing the cost of jail in New York City compared to St. Louis. These figures are for jail inmates, not prison inmates. St. Louis costs $76.50 a day. New York City costs $459. That’s right, $459 a day to house the 12,287 inmates who passed through New York City jails. 83% of that cost is directly related to the wages, benefits and pension of the corrections officers. According to the Post, there are almost two staff members for each inmate. Somehow, we have to get prison and jail costs down to earth and away from the stratosphere. A good start would be to dump the death penalty. What do you think?Death Penalty Costs


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