Death Penalty: Let Voters Decide

Judge Cordell is joined by four volunteer signature gatherers with six boxes of petitions from San Francisco County voters.

James Clark: Thousands of Californians are joining together to call on local district attorneys to stop seeking death sentences until voters get a chance to weigh in on this broken system.

ACLU Next: Death Penalty on the Ballot — May 21

aclu event

Guest Speakers: Jeanne Woodford (former San Quentin warden) and Obie Anthony (exonerated after being wrongfully convicted of murder) Monday, 21 May

The Framing of Kevin Cooper

kevin cooper

Hans Bennett: In this interview, author J. Patrick O’Connor discusses his newly released book Scapegoat: The Chino Hills Murders and The Framing of Kevin Cooper, explaining why he is convinced of Kevin Cooper’s innocence.

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 Torture of Mumia Abu-Jamal Continues Off Death Row

mumia

Hans Bennett: Abu-Jamal has asked for supporters to not just call for his release from the hole, but to challenge the very practice of solitary confinement and what are called in Pennsylvania “Restricted Housing Units.”

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.

Cut The Death Penalty From California’s Budget Woes

death row san quentin

Andy Love: As California cuts critically important funds, the state continues to pour hundreds of millions of dollars into one government program that is expensive, arbitrary and ineffectual: the death penalty.

California, Like Oregon, Has a “Compromised and Inequitable” Death Penalty System

Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber

Andy Love: The only way to end the death penalty in California is by a ballot initiative, and the statewide signature‑gathering effort to place such an initiative on the November 2012 ballot is well underway.

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

death penalty

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.

Ending California’s Wasteful Tinkering With The Machinery Of Death

death penalty vigil

Andy Love: California’s death penalty needs to be abolished. Putting aside the philosophical and spiritual questions about the immorality of the death penalty, it is costly, arbitrary, discriminatory, and unworkable.

My Opposite

andy love

Andy Love: I told him that one of the most compelling aspects of my work was delving into their life histories to understand how it was they ended up on death row. I found humanity in all of them.

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.

California’s Death Penalty Prevents True Community Justice

Aqeela Sherrils

Aqeela Sherrills: The great irony, of course, is that while the state props up a failed system that discriminates against African-Americans and Latinos and anyone who is poor, it fails to provide justice to victims.

Tide Turning on California’s Death Penalty

execute justice

James Clark: The dominoes are falling fast as more and more people in California are learning what a waste the death penalty has become.

Hey Gov. Brown, Can You Hear Us Now?

death-penalty-wide

James Clark: Jerry Brown said “it’s all on the table.” If that’s true, why is he prioritizing death row over real help—like counseling—for victims’ families?

Lethal Injustice

death-penalty-wide

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.

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Dear Terminator, Lay Off Our Executioners

David Holtzman

David Holtzman: Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger can help. In what very little time he has left in office, he can give his legacy a considerable boost by commuting the state’s hundreds of pending death sentences to life in prison without possibility of release. As a Los Angeles resident on the world’s stage, he should be sensitive to his image at home and abroad.

Cut Death Penalty, Save California $126 Million a Year

Ramona Ripston: The California Supreme Court ‘sentenced’ our state’s taxpayers to an additional debt of $180,000 more per year last week.

Troy Anthony Davis Update

Troy Anthony Davis continues to fight for justice. He has been on death row since 1991. During his time there, Davis has received three stays of execution.  In August 2009, the U.S. Supreme Court granted Troy Davis the chance to present crucial evidence in court that may prove his innocence. This video which was produced […]

What Humanity in the Death Penalty?

african_american_execution

Proponents of abolishing the death penalty, those convicted under the “three strikes” law for petty crimes or for exhibiting mental disorders, and inmates needing drug rehabilitation may be thanking their lucky stars the possibility an release early because of the effort currently underway to solve California’s budget problems. At least this was what was expressed […]

Plea Bargains in the Criminal McJustice System

Philadelphia D.A. Lynne Abraham

In Philadelphia, it is time for a new district attorney. The current D.A. Lynne Abraham is retiring, and none too soon – after 18 years in the position, she has been called “America’s deadliest D.A.” for her exceptionally voracious appetite in seeking the death penalty. Without question, most of the people sentenced to death were […]

Close Down Guantanamo? What About Our Own Hellholes?

Senator Jim Web (D-Virgina) with wife Hong Le Webb

As Tom Paine once opined on this subject: “When it shall be said in any country in the world, ‘My poor are happy; neither ignorance nor distress is to be found among them; my jails are empty of prisoners, my streets of beggars; the aged are not in want, the taxes are not oppressive’— when these things can be said then may that country boast of its constitution and its government.” Folks, we gotta ways to go.

Color of Law: Please Don’t Feed the Prison Monster

justice-maze

At its worst, America’s criminal justice system represents the place where racism, greed and corruption intersect. At its best, it is inherently flawed, unjust, and unreliable, and little better than its worst. The engine that drives this injustice system is known as the prison industrial complex. It is the theater in which the nation’s foremost […]