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EDITORIALS: Newspapers Around the Country Echoed Themes in DPIC’s Year End Report

Posted on Jan 06, 2015

EDITORIALS: Newspapers Around the Country Echoed Themes in DPIC's Year End Report

DPIC’s 2014 Year End Report was featured in numerous editorials since its release on December 18, including:

“Thirty-five people were put to death in 2014, the fewest in 20 years, according to a report last month by the Death Penalty Information Center….[W]hile the death penalty may be increasingly infrequent, it is all too often a brutal end to a brutal life….The people executed in recent years were not the ‘worst of the worst’ — as many death-penalty advocates like to imagine — but those who were too poor, mentally ill or disabled to avoid it.”

“According to a year-end count from the Death Penalty Information Center, the country sentenced 72 people to death this year, the fewest number in 40 years, down from a high of 315 in 1996….All states should end the death penalty within their borders. The risk of executing the innocent, evidenced by the seven men who were exonerated this year, is unacceptable. The financial cost of administering death penalty systems is also too high. Either consideration overwhelms arguments about the punishment’s usefulness as a crime deterrent.”

“[Last year, only 35 inmates were put to death, according to an annual study by the Death Penalty Information Center….voters are coming to realize capital punishment isn’t applied only to those truly guilty of the most heinous crimes. In fact, all too many of those sentenced to die turned out to be innocent.”

“[T]he annual report about all of this from the Death Penalty Information Center shows that Missouri, Texas and Florida accounted for 80 percent of the executions in 2014….Reasonable alternatives to the death penalty exist, including, in some cases, life in prison without parole. These alternatives, which are much less expensive to operate, would prevent the execution of some people who aren’t guilty of the crimes they’re convicted of committing.”

“[T]he Death Penalty Information Center says in its annual report, 35 people have been executed in the United States — down from 98 just 15 years ago….Capital punishment is not going to disappear from this country anytime soon. But the more experience Americans have with it, the less they like it.”

“In 2014, U.S. executions fell to a 20-year low — and botched executions in Ohio and other states were partly responsible. …the Death Penalty Information Center reports. …As states continue to experiment with lethal drug cocktails, Ohioans need to know whether executions here can proceed properly. Sadly, the administration is making that practically impossible.”

(Editorial, “Ways to make the death penalty more fair and humane,” Washington Post, December 31, 2014; Editorial, “Shifting Politics on the Death Penalty,” New York Times, January 5, 2015; Editorial, “America turning away from death penalty: Editorial,” Chicago Sun-Times, December 21, 2014; Editorial, “Instead of defying a national trend, Missouri could lead by ending the death penalty,” Kansas City Star, January 2, 2015; Editorial, “The welcome decline of the death penalty,” Chicago Tribune, December 19, 2014; Editorial, “Deathly Silence,” Toledo Blade, January 5, 2015). See Editorials and Studies.