NEWSWEEK – “It is, of itself, contrary to the Gospel, because it is freely decided to suppress a human life that is always sacred”
“I REMEMBER Stephen King’s It vividly from my childhood, not as a novel but as an object. I was too young to read It when it was a phenomenon in the mid-1980s. It was for older boys, potent symbol indeed for their very being older. It belonged to a category of books, along with Shogun and certain novels by Ken Follett, that I never saw anyone actually read: all I saw was evidence of them having been read, but that evidence was everywhere. Badly used copies could be found in friends’ rumpus rooms or squeezed in among their older brothers’ Dungeons & Dragons boxed sets; others materialized in rental cottages at the beach, their covers mutilated by house pets, their spines furrowed like old skin….”
SFGate August 24 2017 – California Supreme Court strikes down key provision of death penalty law (By Bob Egelko) … And yet, flying in the face of sanity, of humanity, “[California] Executions are now likely to resume within a year, said Kent Scheidegger, legal director of the Criminal Justice Legal Foundation and an author of Prop. 66. “This is a very important victory. Prop. 66 will go into effect very nearly in its entirety,” he said. A lawyer who challenged Prop. 66 agreed that the ruling will allow executions in California to resume, probably at a faster pace than before.”
The decision itself is available at http://www.courts.ca.gov/opinions/documents/S238309.PDF
Fewer and fewer death sentences … Abolition creeps closer? A data retrospective by DPIC
(Last updated July 28, 2017 following an execution in Texas)
NPR : After Three-Year Hiatus, Ohio Carries Out An Execution – July 26, LAUREL WAMSLEY.
At 10:43 a.m. Wednesday, inmate and convicted murderer Ronald Phillips was pronounced dead, executed via lethal injection by the state of Ohio — the first time the state has carried out a death sentence in more than three years.
Phillips’ death at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility in Lucasville may mark the end of one chapter in the state’s battle to find a legally permissible means of execution – and the state may soon begin carrying out many more death sentences.
Ohio paused its executions after a lethal injection in 2014 caused inmate Dennis McGuire to gasp and snort during the 15 minutes before he died.
Following Phillips’ death, Ohio now has 138 people sentenced to death, among the nation’s highest death row populations.