Utah Execution Is a Barbaric and Cowardly Act


I visited the prison here several years ago on an adoption matter. It’s a clean appearing seemingly well run institution for men that have done vile and horrible things. Many are dangerous career criminals housed there that should never be set free until they’re too old to hurt anyone.

After midnight tonight Ronnie Lee Gardner, 49 is going to be escorted to and strapped into a chair and five men will fire .30 Caliber Winchester rifles at a small target on his chest.

Gardner’s crime was a despicable act. He was convicted of capital murder 25 years ago for the 1985 fatal courthouse shooting of attorney Michael Burdell during an escape attempt. He was desperate and 24-years-old back then.

It’s disturbing to me that an entire quarter of a century has passed. That much time would change anyone. There is no evidence since that mad act that indicates he’d re-offend or not find a peaceful way to somehow serve society even if it was behind bars. Killing Gardner now is almost like killing Peter for Paul’s crime.

Gardner made quite an exhaustive appeal to the pardon board. It served no purpose and was a total waste of breath.

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June 22, 2010