Clayton Lockett Suffered. His Victim Suffered More.

Clayton Lockett (L) and Charles Warner (R) earned their places on Death Row.

 

I almost feel sorry for death penalty opponents.

When some miscreant breaks into an old woman’s home, beats, rapes and guts her like a trout, my argument is made for me.

“Joe Schmoe beat, raped and fileted a 77-year-old Bingo-playing grandmother like she was 90 pounds of sushi. He should be put to death for this horrendous atrocity.”

The other side has a tougher nut to crack.

“While yes, it is undeniably true Joe Schmoe did indeed beat, rape and filet a 77-year-old, Bingo-playing grandmother like she was 90 pounds of sushi, (and everyone is very much cross with Joe about that and nobody feels more awful about this than we do), we should still spare his life because he might be redeemable and killing him makes us no better than him killing her and the State murdering Joe is no different from Joe murdering that old woman.”

Good luck with that. I’d rather argue the other side.

Convicted murderer Clayton Lockett was put to death by the state of Oklahoma. They screwed it up.

It certainly appears like Mr. Lockett suffered a rather painful and horrible end.

So did Stephanie Neiman.

Mr. Lockett was not a nice man. In fact, it might be fair to say he’s a bit of an evil demon. The other gentleman scheduled for the hot-shot, Charles Warner is actually even more so.

Before I wring my hands in concern or squirt a single tear for Clayton Lockett and Charles Warner over their possibly suffering a grisly, painful and lingering death, I’m going to ask two questions and only two: What did they do to get themselves strapped to a gurney and do they deserve to die for it?

  • Stephanie Neiman, 19: terrorized, beaten, raped, shot and buried alive in a grave with her mouth still covered with duct tape.
  • Adriana Walker, 11 months old: shaken, skull fractured in two places, jaw and ribs broken, lungs and spleen bruised and lungs lacerated, brain swollen, hemorrhaging found in her eyes and around the brain, anally raped.

Lockett got off easier than his victim.  If there were a way to kill him twice, he’d deserve it. When there are no more criminals like Lockett and Warner raping and torturing and murdering terrified teenagers and helpless infants there will be no more need to execute them.

Governor Mary Fallin rushed through Lockett’s execution and President Obama is troubled by that.

That day is not today and they both lived, lusted and laughed far, far longer than their victims.

Good-bye to both of them and good riddance.

Such a harsh judgment may muddy up my reputation as a good liberal, but I’ll take the hit.

There are prisoners more deserving of compassion and mercy than scum like this.

I want to see as much concern expressed for the victims of the crime and their suffering as there is for the perpetrators. Too often their plight is the center of the conversation and little to none given to the people whose lives they destroyed and the families they irrevocably shattered forever.

Present me with the option of feeling bad over how sorry an end Lockett’s last minutes of life were and they still won’t approach the horrors he put Stephanie Neiman through.

stephanie neimanI’m pro-death penalty with reservations. No one should ever be put to death if there is the faintest shadow of a doubt of their guilt or capacity for rehabilitation. The ultimate penalty should only be imposed for the most heinous and vicious crimes. Popping a clerk at a gas station during a robbery may not rise to that standard. Kidnapping, raping, and sadistically torturing a clerk at a gas station during a robbery before murdering them probably would.

The death penalty is disproportionately applied based upon race and class, haphazard in its application, unproven as a deterrent and unreliable as a method to offer any sort of closure to the families or protection of society.   I understand every argument made in opposition to capital punishment and I don’t pretend I have an equally logical argument for it.

I do have two reasons why I believe someone like Lockett and Warner should be put to death.

It does write a definitive end to the potential threat of a killer to offend again and their criminal acts end with their last heartbeat.

If you anally rape an 11-month-year-old baby to death, you should die.   It’s really that graphic and that simple.

You don’t rape babies to death and you live. You do rape babies to death and you die. See how easy that works? It’s a choice whether you stick your filthy little pecker into places you know it should not go. If you wish to live, do not put your penis in those places.

Because if you do, you’re a baby-raper and there’s nothing lower than that. May God have mercy on your rancid soul because I will have none. Zero tolerance. Ultimate penalty. Bottom line: You do really bad things and you die a really bad death.

The pain Lockett endured in his last moments is no worse than Stephanie Neiman endured buried alive under the dirt.   Don’t ask me to feel more sympathy for his life than he showed for hers.   If there is a way to kill a killer that is less painful and more “humane” than lethal injection, let’s try that.   I don’t advocate torturing the condemned, but I’m not concerned if they endure some discomfort.   Clayton Lockett caused enough of it for others.

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8 thoughts on “Clayton Lockett Suffered. His Victim Suffered More.

  1. Overall,your article is on point for sure. No way at this point in time to keep making any type of excuse for anybody that has these type of whatever issues to do whatever type of violence they are doing. Yes,in some cases and quite a few some have been put to death in some type of unjust way.In this case should not be much of an argument.
    But I would hope that this could be used a prime example to tell all these thugs,so-called gangstas and black criminal types in the hood to stop the madness.
    The question is when is being criminal minded going to finally play out among black males
    in particular. The kkk and other groups love the result for sure and it’s real obvious.
    How many people remember the classic letter( not willie lynch- divide and conquer letter)
    but the letter where the kkk member said a big thanks to all the certain black’s who commit crime and violence daily against a poor black person living in an urban area.
    Prime example is what is happening in Chicago right now.

  2. I hear you. In both of these cases, yes it is hard to make a case they should die. If I were the parent of either of the victims I would want to see them dead. But, you made your own case, honestly.

    The Death Penalty is applied capriciously. There is no standard in its application. There are far to many innocents who have either already died or are still sitting on Death Row awaiting execution. Finally, as we saw with Locket, there is no longer a standard in how we kill.

    As a victim of violent crime, as someone who nearly lost their life I use to be a staunch support of the Death Penalty. My battle cry was kill them all let God sort it out. Then I became involved in the Justice system as part of the Victim Impact Program, I met men and women serving long sentences for violent crimes and I met parents and siblings of murder victims. All of their stories were horrific, yet they all proved one thing. There is the possibility for redemption and forgiveness.

    Redemption doesn’t mean freedom in all cases. Only the possibility of true change. Forgiveness doesn’t mean we seek a difference in the penalty, or we don’t see the viciousness of the crime, only that we see the change and can see the humanity within them.

    For us to advance as a society, we have to be able to do something different. So long as our system of justice relies upon capricious judgment of man and is based on class, money and / or race we remain in the mud.

    • Valentine, I don’t really disagree with you and unlike you I have not been a victim of violent crime, though I have relatives who have. I’m becoming more and more interested in prison reform. The present system of mass incarceration, solitary confinement, and capital punishment isn’t making us any safer. But something has to be done to protect innocents like Charles Warner and Clayton Lockette. This isn’t a Black thing or a rich thing or a class thing for me. This is a matter of justice and protecting the rights of both society and lawbreakers.

      I don’t want to go back to some medieval Dark Age. But there are predators out there and there must be a way to protect ourselves from them.

      • Yes, there are and yes we do. Sentencing should absolutely seek to protect society from those who cannot be reformed, who will never be remorseful for their acts and who we know cannot change. They exist, sociopaths exist. Monsters, true monsters exist.

        But we do not have to emulate them to prove our worthiness as a society. We can create a system of justice that keeps safe our society without becoming monsters ourselves. I truly do believe this.

  3. Jeff, I was just thinking about this issue today, trying to gather my thoughts on why I don’t feel the least bit sorry for either one of those inmates. Thanks for sharing your perspective. Now I don’t have to think about it anymore.

    Shannyn

    • Hey, I try to alternate between the weighty thoughts and the lightweight ones. I’ve given a lot of thought to the death penalty. I know it’s flawed, but for some people like Lockett, it is also richly deserved.

  4. I agree with Valentine. We simply haven’t come far enough as a society for the death penalty to be applied judiciously. Racism and class affects this, and so does the ignorance of the average juror. See the West Memphis Three case, in which three (most likely entirely innocent) teenagers were convicted for murder based on evidence that consisted of, essentially, them “listenin’ to that devil-worshippin’ music” (i.e. Marilyn Manson or some other dross).

  5. Pingback: Clayton Lockett and Barack Obama | Strangers and Aliens

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