Juvenile Death Penalty struck down

The US Supreme Court has ruled the death penalty for 16 and 17 year olds is unconstitutional.

Personally I do not like death penalties for two reasons. The first is that one can end up executing people who were innocent. The second is I tend to think if we don’t have the power to create life, I’m not too keen on Governments having the power to destroy life.

But I respect that it is an issue for each country to decide, and the people of the United States have chosen time and time again that they support the death penalty for the worst murderers.

Now the US Supreme Court has ruled it is now unconstitutional to have 17 year olds executed for murders they have done, partly due to “evolving standards” in the US and internationally.

Now while I agree evolving standards have made the death penalty for 17 year olds more undesirable, I find it hard to disagree with Justice Scalia who basically says that it is not the job of nine appointed Judges to decide for 270 million citizens what society’s evolving standards are. That is a decision for the people through their elected representatives and/or referenda.

So once again I find myself agreeing with the outcome of a US Supreme Court decision, but actually disagreeing that they should have made that decision!

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