I am shocked beyond belief by the Draconian sentence of 15 years to life that was imposed on drunk driver Michael Reding, 27, by Superior Court Judge James L. Smith (Sept. 13).
However, I well realize that Smith was following the lead of what is probably the worst Supreme Court in the United States--California's.
I, a lifelong foe of the death penalty, can't wait to vote against certain judges of that court. Why, it may be asked, am I so critical of the California Supreme Court when it also is against the death penalty? The answer is simple: it is decisions like the one that did in Michael Reding--making drunk drivers subject to second-degree murder prosecutions.
Cold-blooded murderers should be put in prison for life, with no chance of parole (the repeated parole hearings for Robert Kennedy's murderer make me sick). To do that, instead of killing them, saves the state vast amounts of money and prevents media circuses.
Persons such as Reding, who had no intent to kill, are not at all in the above category. When their actions result in deaths, there should nevertheless be severe punishment, like five years in prison.
I hope the United States Supreme Court will right this outrageous injustice.
RICHARD L. GAUSEWITZ