The state of Georgia should not execute Kelly Gissendaner because:
- while she asked someone to kill her husband, she did not kill him;
- the person who killed Doug Gissendaner does not face a possible execution for his actions;
- she has repented of her role in her husband’s murder;
- she has been rehabilitated in secular terms; transformed by God in theological terms;
- she has demonstrated that transformation in her living;
- she has ministered to other inmates, serving as a “calming spirit”; and
- inmates report on her role in their lives, including several who she helped as they contemplated suicide.
For all these reasons, the state of Georgia should not execute Kelly Grissendaner.
But, even if none of these reasons existed, her execution should not take place.
The execution of Kelly Grissendaner, or of any other child of God, demeans the state. It lowers the state to the level of those who kill. At the same time, it places the state in the position of God, making life and death decision. And, to paraphrase Dean Smith, state executions, in a democracy, make murderers of us all.
See you along the Trail.