Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Gary C, Ronnie Lee and Does Organic Mean Organic?

I read the continuing accounts of the debate over Gary Coleman's estate and will(s) with sadness. The poor little guy lays in the morgue waiting for his "friends" to decide what to do with him. It is an embarassing end to a short life (that is what I am talking about - I can't even say something nice without the probability of a pun filtering in) filled with turmoil for him. I can do nothing but feel empathy for him.

I guess my bleeding heart is on one today because I turn the page and read about the refusal of the Utah Board of Pardons to commute Ronnie Lee Gardner's death sentence. I know we got them thar rules and laws in this country and where would we be if we sought to understand and be compassionate rather than seek retribution, but this case has caused me to look at my feelings about the death penalty.

I used to be a death penalty advocate. If you do the crime you got to be able to do the time. We can't have people killing others with wanton disregard and then just taking up space. Besides our nature says it isn't right to let someone off without the appropriate level of consequence.

Then along came Ronnie Lee Gardner. He doesn't care what he did or why he did it. He just wants to save his neck. He had a bad childhood; so did a lot fo people and they didn't kill a lawyer while trying to escape from their initial murder trial? My point is that he is exactly the type of guy we should consider commuting his sentence because he really doesn't seem rehabilitatable.

Everyone who is on death row has an excuse, a reason they are there and a consideration for why they shouldn't be killed. I don't think it is the reasons so much as the act. Do we really have the right to take another life? Is is right for us to judge another's salvation?

I know we can't have them running around loose and there are practical considerations like the cost of incarceration versus terminating his or her existance. I don't know the solution but I don't think killing them will do anything for anybody except make the victim's family and us as society feel better.

I think we should be more enlightened and empathetic than that. That is my point of view.

The last item in this rant is a news article I read about food labeled as "organic". The label is allowed to be put on all products that are raised without artificial enhancers or drugs. The USDA (United States Separtment of Agriculture) regulates who and what gets to put this label on food.

The problem is that a lot of food comes from foreign countries and the USDA doesn't do a good job of monitoring the growing practices outside the US. The word of caution was that when you see the green round USDA "Organic" label on a food product, check to see where it was grown. If it is labeled as made outside the US, you may not be getting the produce or meat you thought you were getting. Just trying to help.

1 comment:

Max said...

I've been reading the stuff on Gary Coleman's life (ignoring the tabloid "what's his ex?wife up to"crap), and my heart goes out to him. He had a hard life and all I can do is pray to God he is getting the peace he was looking for.