Some say that in a humane society, the death penalty should not exist. Today, May 14, 2010, in our humane society, John Albert Gardner III, the sex offender who confessed to murdering Amber Dubois, 14, and Chelsea King, 17, was sentenced to two consecutive life terms without possibility of parole, as well as a third life term with a 25-year minimum for the attempted rape of Candice Moncayo, a jogger who escaped by smashing him in the nose with an elbow, according to the Associated Press. There is nothing humane about a society that allows a malicious deviant back onto the streets, only to rape and kill two young girls.  There is nothing humane in a society that gives life to a man who brutally took the lives of others.  This man, should pay with his life and not through a plea bargain keep what he violently stole  from Amber and Chelsea.

Gardner had already been sentenced for the beating and molesting of a 13-year-old girl in San Diego, California, in 2000.  He served just five years, of the six year prison sentence. He had a verifiable track record and the court-appointed psychiatrist stated that he was a “continued danger to underage girls” and “an extremely poor candidate for treatment.”

The Dubois/King case has sparked an uproar that demands a real change in how the state deals with sexual predators. Chelsea’s parents, Brent and Kelly King, have led the fight by introducing new legislation “Chelsea’s Law” that desires,  “to allow life sentences for some convicted child molesters in California and lifetime electronic monitoring of others. The bill, which cleared its first legislative committee last month, would also ban sex offenders from parks.” This is a needed step in addressing a serious issue, but is it truly a deterrent to this criminal behavior?  Will a sex offender stop because he might be sentenced for life, or have to wear an electronic monitor?  Will a law that states, stay out of parks, keep the sexually sick in line?  This legislation is not enough and those who find it restricting need to look into the eyes of a child close to them and ask who deserves protection:  the innocent or the deviant?

Victims of these type of crimes hurt forever and no amount of legislation or punishment will take away the pain. Protecting the most vulnerable from the most evil should be for any humane society, a top priority.  Somewhere along the line, we have tragically missed the mark of a humane and just society, by treating the unrepentant criminal with more respect than the victim.  Someone must speak out and protect the children of this country, because the predator only grows bolder in his crime when left unchecked and validated by a society with a skewed value system.

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