Are we reverting back to the caveman days? Or is this the Wild Wild West, full of armed outlaws, criminals and misunderstood Native Americans? These days the US is in a heated debate about the life of one man: Troy Davis. Davis was convicted of the 1989 murder of an off-duty police officer, Mark MacPhail, in Georgia. He is set to be lethally injected this week as a result of his crime.

Mr. Davis has claimed all along that he is innocent of the crime he is to be killed for. And although, the evidence is missing in parts and a number of key witnesses have recanted their testimony, Mr. Davis is still scheduled to meet his demise. Americans are taking both sides of the debate over his guilt. Some are completely convinced he is a cold-blooded killer, others think he was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

I don’t know if he is innocent or guilty. I don’t have an opinion about the matter; because, in my opinion, both sides are missing the real heart of the matter. In an advanced country such as the US, or any first world country for that matter, why is the death penalty still a viable option for dealing with criminals? How do we, or the justice system, have the right to decide who is to die for the crimes committed.

The very existence of this option is archaic. Forget the modern world; all our technological and scientific advancements! We’re back in the stone ages. The human race used to kill criminals when there was no other option available to keep the public safe. And maybe at some points in the history of civilization this made sense and was wise. But now… it is so anti-everything we stand for – freedom, liberty.

The US prison system is secure, there is little to no chance a convicted criminal could escape and stay free for any period of time. The public is not in danger from Davis, or any other convicted killer. We don’t need this measure and yet 34 of the 50 States still allow death by capital punishment. From 1977 until now 1,267 people have been killed by the justice system, with 31 to 98 people killed annually since 1992.

Lake Research Partners conducted a study in 2010, which found 61% of respondents would opt for another form of punishment for convicted murders. And yet here we are, waiting with baited breath to see if Davis will be given another stay of sentence, and watching as we murder a murderer.

You know what they say, an eye for an eye makes the whole world blind. 

So, it’s time for the younger generation to step up and make their voices heard. We manage a large portion of social media accounts; our voice is strong and influential. We all deserve the right to breath – the powers that be need to listen up and take note.

Katie Hinderer

Katie Hinderer is a freelance writer and social media enthusiast. She holds a degree in Journalism from Marquette University. Over the years she has transitioned from traditional publishing...