Here’s (yet another) reason why I believe in the death penalty:
I always have arguments about this issue with people (e.g. Reader Quentin) who state that the problem with the death penalty is that occasionally (actually, hardly ever) the wrong people are executed for a crime they didn’t commit.
On the other hand, you have situations like the above Yorkshire Ripper’s imprisonment, which basically turned into some kind of grotesque holiday camp which, I think we all agree, is appalling for everyone except the fucking murdering bastard.
So can I make a wee suggestion, here? If we aren’t going to execute assholes like this (and I still support that), can we at least make sure that their lives behind bars are a living hell? I’m thinking of solitary confinement as practiced in Pelican Bay: no visitors, no entertainment like TV, one hour’s exercise per day (also in isolation), the most basic of diets (water, bread, maybe some fruit).
In other words, there has to be a great deal of punishment involved for someone found guilty of killing over a dozen people, rather than turning him into some kind of folk hero and celebrity. And I find it appalling that the State has to spend a great deal of money just to keep some unworthy scumbag alive. If the government is going to throw money around like that, then fuck it: calculate how much money it will take to keep him alive, shoot him in the back of the neck, and give that money to the victims’ families.
It’s not a perfect solution, but it’s much better than the above travesty.