Is California Reducing Prison Overcrowding Without Fixing Its Cause?

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Sharon Kyle: In a relatively short period of time, our nation has incarcerated enough people to create the second largest city in the United States. Releasing a few tens of thousand prisoners for overcrowding won’t change much or will it?

Replacing the Death Penalty

Tani Cantil-Sakauye

Andy Love: Being on the front lines, capital defense practitioners have experienced first hand the unfairness, arbitrariness and unreliability of California’s capital punishment scheme.

The Cooler Bandits: The New N-Word Is Felon

the cooler bandits

The Cooler Bandits follows four friends struggling to re-enter society after 20 years in prison, only to confront their future in the old neighborhood.

Ending California’s Death Penalty in 2012

aclu death penalty forum

At the ACLU Public Forum in Pasadena on January 10th, James Clark of the SAFE California Campaign and Brent Tonik of CCV will discuss the history of California’s death penalty and lay out the case for its abolition.

Growing Consensus That California’s Death Penalty Must Be Replaced

death penalty vigil

Andy Love: California’s death penalty is incredibly costly, and the money would be far better spent keeping kids in school, keeping teachers and counselors in their schools and giving the juvenile justice system the resources it needs.

Hawaii’s Radical Drug Use Experiment

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Kevin Sabet: A revolutionary program in the Pineapple State is shattering myths about how to deal with drug offenders who violate probation. If only the rest of the country would catch on.

Why Didn’t Mike McQueary Stop Jerry Sandusky? Why Didn’t Anyone Help Kitty Genovese?

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Joseph De May: McQueary, Paterno, and Penn State administrators had clarity and time to react that most of the Kitty Genovese witnesses simply did not.

Survey Saturday: Voting Rights for the Formerly Incarcerated

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Survey Saturday: Here in California, people who have a felony conviction are only barred from voting if they are still in state prison or on parole.

The Death Penalty and #OccupyWallStreet

shujaa graham

David Love: Capital punishment operates under a pretense of justice, when in reality it represents pure vengeance and mob retribution, favoring expediency and finality over finding the real killer.

America’s Shame: Troy Davis, Hank Skinner, and a Cast of Thousands

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Andy Love: The death penalty, as legendary capital defender Steve Bright has said, is often reserved for the case with the worst lawyer not the worst crime.

Saturday Survey: America’s Death Penalty Derby

death penalty vigil

Saturday Survey: Keeping its lead in the nation’s death penalty derby, Texas yesterday conducted its twelfth execution this year, putting a mentally impaired Frank Garcia to death for killing Hector Garcia, a police officer, ten years ago. In line with another execution yesterday in Texas, this week’s poll gathered your thoughts on the effectiveness and morality of the death penalty in America.

Final Hours

christine merulis

Christine Meuris: It is impossible to imagine what this is like, as impossible as finding the right words to say, when a man in this position, in his last hours, calls on the phone.

What to Do with the Anti-Government Outrage

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Adam Eran: The real outrage is that private banks receive far more money than any social safety net program would need, but the proposed cuts impact only safety net programs.

The Death Penalty as Ritualized Mob Violence

execute justice

David Love: When a white conservative audience cheered presidential candidate and Texas Governor Rick Perry over his execution record at a recent debate, it underscored what is wrong with the death penalty.

Death: And Law & Order

law and order jerry orbach

James Clark: California taxpayers spend $184 million each year to support a dysfunctional death penalty system that operates like an upscale life without parole: more death row inmates die of illness and old age than they do of execution.

Fight to End the Most Base Form of Exploitation

Kamala Sarup

Brian McAfee: The men and the occasional women who participate in the abuse and victimization of children are unconscionable people whether serving as their rapists, pimps or enablers.

SB 490: Let the Voters Make an Informed Death Penalty Decision

don heller

James Clark: No one is surprised to learn that California’s death penalty is a broken and dysfunctional system. After all, you don’t have to go far in California to find any government bureaucracy that’s broken or dysfunctional – it’s finding a functional government program that might take a while.

U.S-Mexico Border Residents Feel Safe

border-residents

Michele Waslin: As residents who live along the U.S. side of the border have known for years, the border is actually a very safe place, and reports of “spillover” violence from Mexico are unfounded.

FBI Probe of VA Crime Should Expand

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Jeff Norman: Now that the FBI is investigating a homicide committed on VA property, federal authorities may also investigate shady land use deals the VA made.

The Myth of California’s Death Penalty

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James Clark: Out of more than 900 men and women sentenced to die in California only 13 have ever been executed. Victims’ family members are dragged through decades of appeals and hearings while they wait for an execution that rarely comes.

From Casey Anthony to Wall Street: Crime Pays

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Brent Budowsky: One of the great sources of outrage in our age is that again and again, crime pays. The victims, from young girls who die while vermin eat their corpse to embezzled investors who lose their money, from tortured prisoners to jobless workers to homeless victims of mortgage fraud, pay the price.

California Prison Typify the Incarceration Society

prison-overcrowding

Sherwood Ross: If you want a glimpse into the soul of a nation, visit one of its prisons. California is no exception. It’s typical.

Inside Job

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Tom Degan: What is incredible about this very important film is that a few of the perpetrators of this incalculable theft arrogantly sat down with the makers of the film for interviews that are as jaw-dropping as they are outrageous.

Illinois Ends the Death Penalty: Wake-up Call for California

Aqeela Sherrills,

Natasha Minsker: It’s time to stop playing the killing game. Let’s use the hundreds of millions of dollars we’ll save to protect some of those essential services now threatened with death. Let’s stop asking people like me to lie to those victim’s family members.

One More Chance for Youth

Youth Justice Coalition

Diane Lefer: Youth in life without parole cases are often acting under the influence of an adult. In nearly 70 percent of California LWOP cases in which the youth was not acting alone, at least one codefendant was an adult.

More Black Men in Prison Than Were Enslaved II

prison

Prison Based Gerrymandering Vote ecently we ran a piece written by Dick Price entitled, “More Black Men Now in Prison System Than Were Enslaved“. Tens of thousands read it. Many left comments. The popularity of his article and the comments posted lead to this follow-up. The article Dick wrote was a recap of a talk [...]

Lethal Injustice

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Diane Lefer: The death penalty means “the State can kill you as long as they give you a trial. The State doesn’t say your lawyer has to be awake.

Phoenix Police Exaggerate Kidnapping Stats

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Andrea Nill: One city councilwoman claims that police officials have known the figures were wrong since August 2010, but continued to deny allegations that they weren’t for months.

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