Letters: Don't compare killer, kid victims

'Bush Jr.'
'Bush Jr.'
Posted: September 19, 2012

A RECENT commentary by Robert Zaller ("Mercy for Terry Williams, no more death penalty in Pa.," Daily News, Sept. 12) regarding convicted murderer Terrance Williams seeks mercy for a person Zaller calls a friend.

The column seems to imply that the death penalty serves no purpose, or that its application is so arbitrary and fraught with uncertainty, randomness or lack of fairness that it should be abandoned. Zaller's views on the death penalty may or may not merit a reply on some occasion, but that is not why we write now.

We write because Zaller brought into your discussion a group of victims with whom we worked - the victims of Gerald Sandusky. Referencing these victims on behalf of a convicted two-time murderer is unbecoming, exploitative and offensive.

Those victimized by Sandusky were children, some as young as 9 or 10 years of age, at the time of their victimization. Many of them lived with pain for years. Some had early years of deprivation and loss even before they encountered Sandusky. Some had difficult times for many years after Sandusky. None, however, took the life of a human being. In fact, each of the young men we came to know expressed both sympathy and empathy not only for Sandusky's other victims, but for all victims of child abuse and of crime generally. In addition, their victimization is fact - testified to under oath, and proven to a jury.

In contrast, the alleged victimization of the murderous Mr. Williams is an assertion, clearly self-serving, and made only years after Williams bludgeoned one of his victims to death, set him on fire, stole the victim's money and went to Atlantic City to gamble with the proceeds of his crimes. Furthermore, your commentary fails to inform the reader that Mr. Williams also committed another murder, and before those two murders, as a juvenile, he used a shotgun to commit a violent home-invasion robbery of an elderly couple.

Despite these brutal crimes, Williams was given a chance to rehabilitate himself, even to go to college, and others had a chance to help him.

Be that as it may, you are free to choose your friends, and to make your arguments. We merely ask, as a matter of common decency, that you refrain from dragging young victims of child abuse into your campaign.

Even if you will not apologize for your error, please do not repeat it.

Joseph E. McGettigan III

Frank G. Fina

Pa. Office of Attorney General

Prosecutors, Gerald A. Sandusky case

Editor's note: The state Board of Pardons on Monday rejected Williams' petition for clemency. He is scheduled to die by injection Oct. 3.

Is the outcome fixed?

Re: Gov. Corbett & schools Gov. Corbett is quoted as saying, "Some would argue that this is a war on public education - that couldn't be further from the truth. This provides school competition."

The Harrisburg legislative Republicans and the Corbett administration have hugely increased the funding for charter schools and created tax credits for Catholic schools and private schools, but vastly decreased the funding for Philadelphia public schools.

I wonder who they really want to win the competition?

Mayer Krain

Philadelphia

Take a lesson, Mitt

Oh, now this is getting humiliating for Mitt "The Flip-Flopper" Romney and Paul "Let's kill off all the seniors" Ryan. Even a fellow right-winger like Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association is slamming them! Mitt started all this mess by first going after the president over Libya, and then doing his usual Etch-a- Sketch backpedal dance a day after when polls showed disapproval with his nasty remarks. Why does Mitt always have to revisit every single issue, and then reverse course?

Why can't he be more like his hero, Bush Jr.? Say something stupid, and then stick with it !

Marc Golde

Merion Station

Rock 'em, sock 'em

Re: Eagles On Sunday, we watched the Eagles ultimately triumph over the Ravens during the NFL's presentation of "Fight Club II."

Jim Acton

Collegeville

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