“I think that the conventional wisdom that poor people and people of color – particularly black folks – are locked in ghettos and cycling in and out of prisons simply due to poverty and bad schools and poor culture has got to be challenged”
- Michele Alexander
Troy Davis is dead – snuffed out by the American judicial system. Why?
According to President Jimmy Carter, who described the killing as “unjust and outdated,” the reasons behind the execution of Davis are a tragedy.
Carter hopes this tragedy “will spur us as a nation toward the total rejection of capital punishment.
Davis, who was executed by lethal injection on September 21, 2011, had been on death row since 1989 for a crime he consistently said he did not commit. Davis had even gone so far as to request he be given a polygraph test to prove his innocence, but the court would not permit that as evidence, nor would they grant him a new trial, even in light of the fact that, in the United States, since 1973, more than 130 people have been exonerated from death row because further evidence, including DNA testing, found them to be innocent.
Is this logical? And if not, how can it be considered fair?
President Obama has chosen to remain silent on the death penalty question, making no comment on the Davis decision. Yet for decades, advocates around the world have been pressing America to swear off the death penalty forever. And now that the nation finds itself at a truly grim crossroads, resonating outrage and disgust at America’s distorted sense of equality and justice, Michelle Alexander – attorney, legal scholar and author – continues her quest urging us as a nation to examine why the Davis killing and other institutional injustices in the US continue to go on, sanctioned by the state and unfettered.
In her groundbreaking book, “The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness,” Alexander writes:
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