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In the crosshairs of conscience: John Kitzhaber's death penalty reckoning

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To cope with his dread, John Kitzhaber opened his leather-bound journal and began to write.
It was a little past 9 on the morning of Nov. 22, 2011. Gary Haugen had dropped his appeals. A Marion County judge had signed the murderer's death warrant, leaving Kitzhaber, a former emergency room doctor, to decide Haugen's fate. The 49-year-old would soon die by lethal injection if the governor didn't intervene.
Kitzhaber was exhausted, having been unable to sleep the night before, but he needed to call the families of Haugen's victims.
"I know my decision will delay the closure they need and deserve," he wrote.
The son of University of Oregon English professors, Kitzhaber began writing each day in his journal in the early 1970s. The practice helped him organize his thoughts and, on that particular morning, gather his courage.
Kitzhaber first dialed the widow of David Polin, an inmate Haugen beat and stabbed to death in 2003 while already serving a life sentence fo…

Philippines death penalty: ‘The cheaper, the better’

Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez
Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez
SPEAKER Pantaleon Alvarez said the debate on the method of executing death convicts should focus more on cost―the cheaper, the better.

In an interview with reporters, Alvarez said lawmakers should not make a big deal of how a death convict should be killed, whether through hanging or firing squad or lethal injection.

“[Lawmakers] should not argue if death by hanging, firing squad or lethal injection was better, all of them will end up dead anyway,” said Alvarez.

Alvarez’s preference was for a low-cost method to save on government resources.

“Whatever is cheaper. As Sen. [Manny] Pacquiao (who preferred the hanging method) said, you just kick the chair,” said Alvarez.

He proposed that the Executive branch be allowed to make the decision on the mode of execution. President Duterte has announced in his campaign he wanted the shock value of a double hanging.

Alvarez has filed a resolution reimposing the death penalty on heinous crimes which was abolished in 2006, adding he was determined to have it approved by Congress to deter the worsening crime rate in the country.

Source: inquirer.net, August 10, 2016 (local time)

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"One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed, but by the punishments that the good have inflicted." - Oscar Wilde

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