The Point

The Point: Spare the Innocent

Recently, California Governor Gavin Newsom announced that he will not sign any death warrant, meaning he has effectively halted executions in the state, despite the fact that Californians have consistently backed the death penalty. The reason he offered is a common objection to the death penalty: the risk that an innocent man or woman might be put to death. According to a report by, roughly 1 in 25 convicted felons “are later found to be innocent.” That means that as many as 30 of California’s 737 inmates on death row could be innocent. The execution of just one innocent prisoner would be a tragedy and a grave injustice. Though that reason doesn’t convince me against the death penalty, I do respect this line of reasoning. But I would ask the Governor why he’s also not bothered by the idea of roughly 150,000 innocent lives taken in California abortion clinics each year. I’m not playing “gotcha.” Taking an innocent life, whether it’s in prison or in the womb, is always wrong.


John Stonestreet


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