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Death for child rapists

September 15, 2008

Re "Child rape revisited?" editorial, Sept. 10

There are some crimes that are worse than murder -- and child sexual abuse is one of those crimes.

Retribution and justice are among the primary pillars that support civilization. Our laws and courts and police cannot function without the consent of the governed. When predators attack children, the public demands a blood debt. When it is not paid, our society is weakened and shamed. The victims suffer deep and personal violation that is not balanced even by a lifetime of imprisonment by the predator, and we move a step closer to anarchy because we cannot trust our institutions.

Death to child predators is necessary, and honor demands it. Our institutions are a proxy for us all. If they fail, do not be surprised if the families and friends of the victims feel that they must personally carry out justice against the monsters who attack their children.

Brian McCracken

Soquel, Calif.

While the Supreme Court must decide the case on constitutional grounds, the practical effect of the ruling is worth considering. If the death penalty is applied to the rape of a child, what is to deter the rapist from also killing the child, who is usually the only potential witness for the prosecution? Isn't it better that the victim survive, although traumatized, than be murdered to keep her or him from testifying?

Eleanor Egan

Costa Mesa

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