Majority seem opposed to repeal

I have seen several polls that indicate 70 percent of Nebraskans are against repeal of the death penalty, yet 68 percent of lawmakers voted in favor of repeal. How are they properly representing their constituents? Are they arrogantly implying that they know better than the voters who elected them? Or did they let their personal biases overshadow their elected duties?

Either way, and regardless of subject, they should be ashamed, and the voters need to reflect that when they are up for re-election.

Kurt Loseke, Blair, Neb.

Thinking on execution evolves

I applaud the Nebraska Legislature for taking up the death penalty issue. In my younger days, I was for the death penalty. As I have grown older and hopefully wiser, I have changed my opinion and no longer favor the death penalty.

For those individuals who quote the Old Testament, “an eye for an eye,” take a look at the New Testament. We are all sinners, but Jesus died on the cross to pay for those sins.

I urge all of Nebraska’s state senators to vote YES and repeal the death penalty.

Bill Holdcroft Jr., Omaha

Would Starkweather be spared?

In December 1957 and January 1958, Charles Starkweather, age 19, and Caril Fugate, age 14, went on a murderous rampage and killed 11 people in Nebraska and Wyoming.

I ask you liberal, do-gooder Democrats and Republicans, just how many people does one of these sadistic killers have to kill before they deserve the death penalty in your view of morality?

Many of you are in favor of killing innocent unborn children. What hypocrites. Have you no shame?

James Proctor, Lincoln

Execution, murder are both heinous

They say imitation is the highest form of flattery.

When an individual kills someone, that is a heinous act. When we as a society kill in retribution, that is a heinous act. I do not want to copy-cat a killer.

The death penalty says more about us than it does about the person in the death chamber.

Marylyn Felion, Omaha

‘Better late than never,’ Nebraska

Nebraska finally passed a bill to allow young immigrants to get driver’s licenses. Now there is a far better chance that these kids can get better jobs to pay taxes and help pay for insurance for the cars they are driving.

Too bad Nebraska had to be the last of the 50 states to pass this legislation. Better late than never.

Dale Rezac, Omaha

Marijuana money matters the most

Marijuana is not a big problem. Money spent on marijuana is a huge problem.

Five decades of U.S. drug policy has institutionalized a multibillion-dollar black market. Some consequences include border tunnels, crack cocaine, cartel violence, toppled governments, erosion of respect for “the rule of law” and the funding of local “gangsta” lifestyles.

Instead, Nebraska should:

» Decriminalize marijuana cultivation for personal use.

» Allow “growing” as a cottage-level industry.

» Use confiscation and monetary fines to limit the amount of pot that can be legally sold or transported.

» Sell confiscated pot well below street value to further suppress the marketplace price. Or any other plan that takes big money out of the marijuana business.

Legislative Bill 643 would take Nebraska on a different path. No matter how well intentioned, drug policy that says “marijuana is medicine” is an open invitation to big business and the pharmaceutical lobby. I strongly doubt they’ll support any policy that reduces their new revenue stream.

Tym Livers, Omaha

Prison reforms can give hope to many

As a resident of the Sarpy County jail, I feel we should not disregard the proposed reform bills to reduce prison overcrowding.

These bills would not only reduce prison overcrowding dramatically. They would give hope and opportunity to inmates who really want to make a difference in their actions and make a positive change in their way of life. These bills would give hope not just to inmates. They would also give hope to their families and loved ones. With the proper support, these bills would prove beneficial beyond reason.

Not all inmates and offenders would go back to a life of crime or violence. They would take the opportunity they were given and use it to better themselves. The ones who do choose to revert back to a negative lifestyle are only going to return to prison as a negative result.

These United States of America were built off of opportunity, and opportunity has inspired great change in America. Let’s not steal from our community by stealing the opportunity to better a person’s future.

Gary Barfield Jr., Papillion

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