Not much of a diary, I know, but I must urge all fellow citizens of the Land Of Lincoln who are opposed to capital punishment to take action.
The Illinois General Assembly has passed legislation that would make Illinois the 16th state to ban executions.
Governor Pat Quinn has walked a standard politician's fenceline on the issue of capital punishment, saying that he is in favor of executing those convicted of certain crimes, while favoring reforms to the state's broken capital system. At the same time, Quinn says he favors extension of the state's now ten year old moratorium on executions, instigated by former Governor George Ryan.
No matter how much one may favor the execution of certain criminals, the death penalty system will never be perfected. It will continue to be applied to minorities disproportionately to whites, and it will continue to be applied to the poor disproportionately to the non-poor, and it will continue to be applied disproportionately to males compared to females. Forensic labs will continue to botch evidence, and "experts" will continue to proffer pseudo science.
Prosecutors will continue to withhold exculpatory evidence, and innocent individuals will continue to be convicted. It is enough of a travesty that a person should spend years of their lives incarcerated for a crime they did not commit. While those years can never be returned, those wronged individuals can still be freed. There is no bringing back to life an executed innocent.
Please call Governor Quinn at 217-782-0244 and urge him to end Illinois's eternally broken capital punishment practice.
Further contact information for Governor Quinn is available at the Governor's website: