Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Sometimes you win and sometimes you lose

Yesterday the State of Texas murdered Carroll Joe Parr. Mr. Parr's crime was killing a fellow drug dealer while robbing him.

There wasn't a hue and cry about a wrongful conviction in Mr. Parr's case. Just one dead man and one man on the row. But pumping Mr. Parr full of poison didn't bring anyone back. Now there are two dead men - and for what purpose?

We know our criminal (in)justice system isn't perfect. We know that innocent folks are convicted every year. We know that innocent people have been sent to death row. We know there's a damn good chance that innocent folks have been put to death (Cameron Willingham, anyone?)

Being that we are human and knowing that our institutions are only as good as the people running them, isn't it time we put an end to the death penalty? It isn't worth the risk that an innocent man gets strapped down and murdered. Anyone involved in this business that's honest with himself knows that's the truth.

Meanwhile, a few hundred miles east in the Magnolia State, the Mississippi Supreme Court reversed its ruling from less than a month ago and granted Willie Manning's request for a stay of execution. Jeff Gamso did a great job of pointing out the problems in Mr. Manning's case the other day and I would encourage y'all to give it a read.

I can't explain the court's decision. Nothing new happened in the last few weeks. The evidence is as bad as it was when the jury convicted Mr. Manning. The junk science put forward by the FBI is as bad today as it was last month as it was when the jury considered it.

But I'm not going to question it. I'm going to sit back for a few moments and be thankful that one man's life was spared on Tuesday.

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