Davis: Mercy On Their Souls

by
Abby Zimet
The state-sanctioned killing of Troy Davis has elicited much righteous grief, shame and anger; may it spark long-overdue change as well. His final, moving letter to supporters here. What you can do in his name here and here. The people's historian Howard Zinn on the death penalty as "a kind of terror waged by the state, one death at a time, an attempt to instill fear and obedience in the population."

"There are societies that do not pretend to be 'civilized'—military dictatorships and totalitarian states—and execute their victims without ceremony. Then there are nations like the United States, whose claim to be civilized rests on the fact that its punishments are legitimized by a complex set of judicial procedures. This is called 'due process,' despite the fact that each step in this process is tainted by racial prejudice, class bias or political discrimination." - Zinn in Killing People to ‘Send a Message’.

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