The state of Georgia is once again going to set an execution date for Troy Davis. What's wrong with that? There's a lot of evidence that Troy Davis didn't commit the crime of which he was convicted.
According to Amnesty USA, Davis was
Davis' case has kicked around in the courts for 20 years! For fear of "frivolous appeals" our legal system has made it extraordinarily difficult for prisoners to get relief from unjust or misguided verdicts in their original trials. So these things drag on and on. Too often, resolution simply means that the courts say what amounts to "sorry -- we took too long and we can't go back and help you." Should anyone die because the system can't be made to work?
Amnesty International has carefully studied Davis' case as an example of what's wrong with the death penalty in the United States. Their conclusion:
To learn more about Davis and how to contact those political authorities that can make a difference, visit Amnesty USA.
Even well-intentioned police can be under pressure to arrest someone, anyone; prosecutors are judged by their conviction rate. This stuff happens. Courts can be places where mistakes, even honest ones, create injustice.
Given that reality, it seems madness that the state should be in the business of judicially killing people. Some mistakes can't be fixed, ever.
Photo by Scott Langley.