Prevent the return of the Death Penalty in Rhode Island
Send a message loud and clear to the Rhode Island General Assembly: The death penalty will never return to our state.
Rhode Islanders should be proud that our state was one of the earliest in the country to abolish the obscene and unnecessary practice of capital punishment, having abolished it for all crimes in 1852.
The death penalty was reintroduced in 1872, but it was never carried out before being abolished again in 1984.
The death penalty is ethically and morally indefensible. This repugnant practice belongs in the past, and across the world, brave people fight repressive regimes that still deem it necessary to execute people.
Religious leaders, such as Pope Francis, have called for the abolition of the death penalty worldwide.
Rhode Island outlawed the death penalty because John Gordon, an innocent man, was tried, convicted and executed for a crime he did not commit. We learned a hard lesson, but some people, it seems, never learn.
RI State Representative William O’Brien, of House District 54 in North Providence said, in the Valley Breeze, that "he’s planning to introduce legislation in the upcoming General Assembly session instituting the death penalty for anyone convicted of targeted assassinations of the state’s first responders, such as police officers, firefighters, or EMTs."
The Valley Breeze quotes O'Brien as saying:
“Our first responders sacrifice their own personal well-being to protect us and it has sickened me watching them be set-up and killed in targeted assassinations. The penalty for such cowardly acts must be severe and there is nothing more severe than the death penalty.
“It is my hope that such stark consequences will send a loud and clear message that our state’s first responders are off limits and if you attack them the punishment will be absolute."
Sign this petition and let William O'Brien and all other legislators in our state that, despite the new regime taking power in Washington, Rhode Island will not backslide towards barbarism and cruelty. Make it clear to O'Brien that there will never again be a death penalty on the books in Rhode Island.
This petition will be delivered to:
State Representative William O'Brien