In the article “They may not forgive Dylann Roof, but they don’t want him dead,” on CNN, author Eliott C. McLaughlin gives us an inside view of the families thoughts on death by lethal injection for the shooter at the Emanuel AME church in Charleston, South Carolina back in 2015. The author starts by giving a brief background on what happened in that church in 2015 by telling us that Dylann Roof was “a white supremacist” that took 9 lives in that church back in 2015 because he wanted to start a race war. McLaughlin then begins his main argument by explaining that at least two family members of the victims have reconsidered their thoughts of having Roof sentenced to death. Esther Lance, daughter on one of the victims, explains that when she first found out that her mother was murdered she was “angry” and that she wanted him to die for taking the lives of nine people, but slowly changed her mind when she realized that her mother would have never wished that upon anyone. Sharon Risher, Esther’s sister, wrote her own essay on her feelings she had toward the incident by saying that even though she is opposed to capital punishment, she would not protest the death sentence of Roof if he were to get one. McLaughlin closes by explaining that over the last two decades national support of the death penalty has gone down from 80% to 60%, especially of those who have had a love one become a victim of violence.
In today’s world, the death penalty has become an extremely controversial subject. People can debate for hours on end about the right and the wrong of this form of punishment. In this case, families of the victims were split in their own judgments. Some believe that he who takes the life of another human being should have their own life taken from them as well; yet there are still those who believe that those who kill should have to live with what they have done for the rest of their lives. Currently in the Roof’s case, he has been sentenced to death due to the killing of nine innocent people in Charleston, South Carolina. He will become the first federal hate crime defendant sentenced to death, therefore this event is like no other in history to which I can compare. In my opinion, I believe those who take the lives of others should be sentenced to death because most people aren’t remorseful of their actions. This relates to my life because at any moment in time I can be caught in a life threating event due to my race or even religion. I still want to know how the jurors feel or what they think when being faced with the ability to sentence somebody to death or to sentence them life in prison.