I have a gun.

I am sitting in my living room and watching CNN. My wife and two children are sleeping upstairs. Suddenly, a man walks though our front door holding a knife in his hand. His eyes have a crazed look and he looks directly at me and says, “My name is John Smith and I am here to kill you.”

What would you do? Would you shoot him?

Or would you feel bad about it and take the chance that he is just lost and looking to use your telephone? Shit no! You shoot and pray you take him out. If you’re like me, you wouldn’t stop shooting until you completely ran out of bullets. The following day, would anyone hold a candlelight vigil outside of my home for the lunatic who tried to murder my family and me? No.

Then why did hundreds of demonstrators plan on holding a candlelight vigil outside of San Quentin State Prison for the execution of Kevin Cooper, who was convicted of brutally hacking to death four people – two of them children – after he escaped from prison in 1983. Notably, a federal appeals court barred Cooper’s execution, pending a re-evaluation of the evidence that led to his conviction. And, if Cooper is truly innocent, justice will prevail. However, if a court again finds him guilty, then the judicial system should realize that there is no rehabilitating such a madman.

Nonetheless, the Rev. Jesse Jackson and hundreds of others protested the execution. If Cooper is again found guilty, then death penalty is not a harsh enough punishment for this animal. A lethal injection – what is that? It’s a favor. I, for one, think that Mr. Cooper should be tortured before he is let off the hook for his heinous crimes.

What if it was the Rev. Jesse Jackson in my shoes sitting in front of the TV that night when an attempted murder went down? He would shoot, just like anyone else who had the chance to. We all would take action to protect ourselves and our children or family. We would all make the same judgment: death. There would be no appeals, no questions asked.

We are all Americans and all have the freedom to protest and speak our minds on issues. But I think that we are protesting the wrong issue here. The first execution in two years – that’s what we should be protesting.

The death penalty is a joke in this country. I, for one, think that we should march straight to Washington to promote more executions. Killing a family of four simply earns you a prison cell and three hot meals a day for the rest of your life. Why retire? Let’s pitch in and help out with social security problems and start murdering people. Free retirement! Come and get it!

Homeless? What a bunch of idiots. They sit there and beg for money so that they can buy themselves a hot meal. Maybe the next homeless man who asks me for a dime should stab me to death instead. Why not? He can then get free health care and free food for as long as he lives, which, by the way, will be a long time because we all know how much of a joke the death penalty is. The fact that a convicted killer gets three hot meals a day while sitting on his ass outrages me. “But the death penalty is inhumane.” You want some cheese with your whine? Hang on, I’ll call whine-one-one.

If it was your family that was brutally murdered, you would change your opinion, you hypocrite. Don’t give me that crap. Make these bastards suffer. Light a candle and throw it onto the gasoline-soaked convicted killer. Televise it. And grow a pair of balls, you fucking pot-smoking hippie.

Brandon Jordt is a junior business economics major.