James Anderson was killed on June 26, 2011 in Mississippi. Anderson was approached by 7 white teens in a parking lot. He was, then, beaten and ran over. Deryl Dedmon and company left a party and were quoted with “let’s go fuck with some niggers.” They found James Anderson. Dedmon had a history of hatred towards African Americans and homosexuals. The Department of Justice investigators have uncovered two other possible incidents where groups of white Rankin County teens, including Dedmon, have sought out and attacked a black person. Prosecution will determine if Deryl Dedmon will get the death penalty by November 1.
Is it possible to have compassion for a killer or a racist? You can’t fight murder with murder. Martin Luther King said, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” Anderson’s sister wrote the district attorney on behalf of the family pleading against the death penalty. Racial disparities already exist regarding capital punishment.
I’m against the death penalty. However, this will spark an outrage if Deryl Dedmon isn’t given the death penalty and comparisons to Troy Davis and Lawrence Brewer will be conspicuous. Personally, living the rest of his life in prison is a far worst punishment than two minutes in the chair.
To some, the death penalty is an allegory for Christianity in respects to the decision of who can live and who can die. It shouldn’t be up to us but opposition to capital punishment is more than religion. Political, personal, statistical, moral, and ethical reasons are enough to spark dialogue and hopefully abolish the death penalty.
So, should Deryl Dedmon get the death penalty?