Citi Field: an ideal spot for public executions

Kenneth Kowald

Okay. So you have not heard from your elected officials, if you wrote to them or called them or e-mailed them about having public executionism in New York state. Don’t despair. It happens to the best — or worst — of us.

Some of you who stumble upon my column “I Sit and Look Out,” in The TimesLedger Newspapers may remember that I wrote one about Constitution Day, which no one seems to observe. I had the temerity–after all, Elaine and I have only two votes–to send that column to my member of Congress and to urge him to take some action about making the day important.

He sent me a robotic e-mail reply and then about a half dozen of his news releases, over the course of several weeks, none of which had the slightest relationship to the subject I wrote about. I won’t give you his name, but his initials are GA and he likes to wear a fresh flower in his lapel every day.

So, if you have heard nothing and will hear nothing, you are in good company, if you consider this blogger good company.

But, here, dear friends, is the solution to the problem! New Yorkers, although perhaps not New York state and municipal governments, can make money from public executions in other states, even if we don’t reinstitute the death penalty. And along with the dough the private sector can pull in, there will be some taxes leaking to government.

How to do this? Easy as 9-9-9. By the way, did anyone note that those three numbers, when pronounced in English equal “no” in German? Three times. Where is Herman these days? Book tour over? Family values restored?

But I digress. Here comes what you have been waiting for: The Metropolitan Opera and many other organizations have been sending live broadcasts of programs and events around the world to theaters and other locales for several years.

How many days a year does Citi Field stay empty? What about the tennis facilities nearby? These could be venues for huge screen transmissions of the live (pardon the pun) broadcasts of the executions in other states. Everyone would benefit. The death penalty states would be spreading their product as it were. The non-death penalty states (New York) would be selling out vacant space. Theaters would be filled to capacity. After all, more than 60 percent of the American population favors the death penalty and they need a little reassurance that these things are carried out properly. What better way than a show and tell?

Think of the tailgating parties. Think of the food and drink that could be sold before and after the execution film is shown at Citi Field and other venues. Think of the souvenirs imaginative capitalists could make and sell. Out of a sense of propriety, of course, such things would not be hawked during the event itself.

This might even make the Mets financially viable. But my enthusiasm may be carrying me into the realm of fantasy.

Think of the school auditoriums, the religious auditoriums, the library auditoriums that could be used to show the DVDs of these events. Because, there will be DVDs, pirated or not. Then there is what can be spread on the Internet, but since this Luddite is not acquainted with all of the nuances of the age of technology, I will not go into that

The mind boggles at the possibilities. And at the income!

Consider: Since 1976, when the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the death penalty as constitutional, there have been at least 1,277 executions and we have missed out on the profits to be made from them. Ridiculous. Please do not be concerned about children seeing such events, even in the auditorium of a house of worship. They should be taught at an early age that crime doesn’t pay. At least not for the convicted miscreant.

As for seeing death, there are few dramatic operas which do not feature a death or two. Children do attend operas, after all, gore or no gore. At “Hansel and Gretel” kids in the audience go wild when the witch gets her comeuppance. One is never too young to learn.

So now you have the solution of the monetary problems of the state — if it is pragmatic and not namby-pamby — for those who know how to make a buck on the backs of others. Sounds a bit like what the banks helped do, together with eight years of Shrub economic disaster to cause the Great Recession. But we’ll go more deeply into that at another time. Amnesia about the eight years of a president from Texas may be difficult to rectify, especially among elephants, but we’ll try. And donkeys need a jolt of reality as well, don’t they?

I have a slogan for this program, too, at no cost to those who want to use it: PEEP, short for Public Executions Equal Prosperity. If Americans have any understanding of free enterprise, there should be millions upon millions of PEEPers.

(In the next blog I am planning to start making some comments about public officials in Queens. The one at the beginning of this screed is mild. I am preparing to raise my security measures and to think about other such safeguards for life and property. That will be based, I would imagine, on how much the sledgehammer and the stiletto matter to those cited.)

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