After viewing the story of Gaile Owens this morning on the CBS Sunday Morning show, I felt compelled to mention her story here.
I believe mental illness is involved in most if not all murder cases. Battered wife syndrome is definitely sustained mental abuse which can eventually take the form of full blown mental illness over time. Gaile Owens was severely mentally and physically abused and battered by her husband for many years. As her own mental state deteriorated and she could finally take no more violence at her husband's hand, she hired a stranger to kill him, an act for which she has since expressed sincere remorse. She was convicted of murder, has served 25 years in prison, and awaits execution on September 23, 2010.
I'm not at all sure which of us has the right to decide the death of any other fellow human being, but some cases are more compelling than others as a "good case" against the death penalty.
For details on Gaile Owens' case, and address information for the Governor of Tennessee, click on the title above.