Smiley & West reflect on the execution of Troy Davis.

Smiley: I wonder if the president might think that Black folk were complaining as they were protesting about Troy Davis being put to death?

West: He's an innocent brother killed by the state in our name.

 

 

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Tavis & Cornel,

Thank you for bringing up this, though I would have loved to see a longer airtime than 1:47 devoted to it. It is a sacred duty headlining this judicial atrocity committed against, not just Troy, his family, loved ones, and friends, but Americans and humanity as a whole. Whatever side of the aisle anyone belongs on the death penalty issue, commonsense, law and equity unite on the absurdity of the State executing a man whose guilt even one of the trial judges along the way admitted as "not ironclad." When a judge, not a layman, substitutes a language of art such as "The People's case against Troy Davis was not ironclad" for the appropriate legal construction of "The People's case against Troy Davis was not proven beyond all reasonable doubt," there are ominous signs on the horizon.

A decent society must mobilize a large-enough petition and organize a loud-enough outcry to engineer a posthumous judicial review of a fraud committed in the name of "The People." Until that is done, the Troy Davis case should be referred to as The State v. Troy Davis, not The People v. Troy Davis. Symbolic? Yes, but worth it.

Amnesty International and other global Human Rights NGOs should renew and ratchet up pressure to see justice done even after-the-fact. Failing this, another Troy Davis is just a matter of time. Even if Troy Davis would ultimately have been found guilty, with the huge cloud of doubt hanging over his guilt, the minimum he deserved, regardless of what the State thought about him, was the benefit of a re-trial. His State-contended guilt was premised on testimonies from nine witnesses, seven of who recanted their testimonies in sworn affidavits. If the testimonies of these witnesses were good enough to convict Troy Davis, their recants should also have been good enough in the eyes of the same State to warrant a setting aside of the wrong-headed verdict and ordering a re-trial. Troy was executed by the State on the throw of a die! That was a travesty of justice.

"The man dies in everyone that keeps silent in the face of tyranny" (Soyinka, 1972).  I hope the man in all of us is still alive. I very much hope so.

TRAGIC today Casey Anthony is free based on lack of evidence YET Troy Davis was executed on lack of evidence.

With no reported dissent, even more tragic to think that ALL justices, including the two minority ones, may have actually voted to deny Mr. Davis' request for stay.  It's clear, the US Supreme Court is dangerously too conservative to ever be expected to objectively rule with a fair and just judgement for ALL OF AMERICA.

 

Thousands attend funeral of executed convict Troy Davis
Published: Saturday, 1 Oct 2011 | 5:48 PM ET


SAVANNAH, Georgia - Thousands of people packed a church in Georgia on Saturday for the funeral of Troy Davis, who was executed for the murder of a police officer in a case that drew world attention because of claims by his advocates that he was innocent.

The rousing service at Jonesville Baptist Church in Savannah reflected a determination by his family, civil rights leaders, supporters and activists to turn his execution last week into a renewed campaign against the death penalty.

"There are some who think that now that Troy has gone ... that our movement is gone, that our voices have been silenced and that our fire has gone out," said Raphael Warnock, the pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta.

"But we have news for them today. We are just getting started," Warnock said in an impassioned eulogy that left some in the congregation in tears and others standing to applaud.

The service lasted more than three hours and mixed gospel songs, prayers and Bible readings. Many in the largely black congregation wore "I am Troy Davis" T-shirts.

Davis, 42, was put to death by lethal injection on September 21 at a prison in central Georgia for the murder in Savannah in 1989 of police officer Mark MacPhail, who was shot as he rushed to the aid of a homeless man who was being beaten.

The execution was delayed by around four hours as the U.S. Supreme Court decided whether to issue a stay, and Davis went to his death saying he was innocent. No physical evidence tied Davis to the crime. Since his conviction, seven of nine witnesses changed or recanted their testimony. Some said they were coerced by police to testify and some named another man they said killed MacPhail.

The case provoked protests by death penalty opponents, France and the Council of Europe called for a stay of execution and nearly 1 million people signed an online petition.

Amnesty International, which campaigns against the death penalty, said the case received more attention than any in the United States in years.

"IT IS NOT OVER"

Several speakers at the church portrayed Davis as a symbol of what they called deep flaws in the U.S. justice system.

Davis was black and there are a disproportionate number of black men in prison in Georgia and on death row, according to human rights lawyers.

"The state of Georgia believes it's over. ... We are here to say today that it is not over. Now that we have been inspired by Troy Davis, you ain't seen nothing yet," said Larry Cox, executive director of Amnesty International USA.

The death penalty receives broad public and political support in the United States, but controversy at home and abroad about the Davis case rekindled intense debate about its use.

Speakers praised Davis as being an inspiration to his family and friends and to other prison inmates while he was on death row. He often helped his nephew to do homework, tutoring him over the telephone from prison, they said.

Some speakers also sought to cast Davis' death in the context of a broader civil rights tradition in which an unjust death that appears to be a setback is used to redouble commitment to the movement.

"Troy ... told us to keep on fighting until his name is finally cleared and Georgia admits what Georgia has done," Benjamin Jealous, president of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, said in a speech.

"Troy's last words were to keep on fighting until the death penalty is abolished and this (the execution) can never be done to anyone else," Jealous said.

At the end of the service, loudspeakers relayed an audio message from Davis recorded before his death in which he thanked his supporters and asked them to continue a campaign against the death penalty.
Copyright 2011 Reuters.

 

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Troy Davis Funeral (Photos)

 

By Robert "Rob" Redding Jr.
Editor & Publisherhttp://reddingnewsreview.com/newspages/2011newspages/Troy_davis_funeral_11_10000097.html

 

 

ANTA, Oct. 1, 2011, 4 p.m. - More than 1,000 people today celebrated

'the life of Troy Davis at Jonesville Baptist Church in Savannah Ge...

 

 NAACP Head Benjamin Todd Jealous and comedian and activist Dick Gregory

 

Here is a picture of graveside services.

Obama plays politics in Troy Davis case
By Robert "Rob" Redding Jr.
Editor & Publisher









ATLANTA, Sept. 22, 2011, 11:50 a.m. - It is understandable why President Obama would not comment on Troy Davis' controversial case. It's called politics!

After all, the last time Obama tried to help a black man who was wrongly accused, his friend, Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates, his poll numbers plummeted.

This time, however, a man is dead and many Kool-Aid drinking Democrats are struggling to explain why the president would not also come to Davis' rescue.

White House Press secretary Jay Carney issued a statement saying the president "has worked to ensure accuracy and fairness in the criminal justice system," and that it is not appropriate for him "to weigh in on specific cases like this one, which is a state prosecution." Excuse me, Gates' case, which resulted in a "Beer Summit" at the White House, was a local case.

In a direct contradiction, the Obama administration asked for a stay of execution for an illegal immigrant, Humberto Leal Garcia Jr., by the state of Texas to no avail back in July, but said nothing about Davis.

Obama has even made the case that stopping state atrocities across the globe in Libya is paramount, but now says dealing with Davis' execution is off the table? Not even Kool-Aid drinking Democrats could be that gullible.

Former FBI director William Sessions, a Davis supporter, wrote, "It is for cases like this that executive clemency exists."

What is even worse, you have Clarence Thomas, the only black man on the Supreme Court, who clears the way for a lynching. "The application for stay of execution of sentence of death presented to Justice (Clarence) Thomas and by him referred to the Court is denied," the order reads.

Many are calling Thomas an "Uncle Tom" for letting Davis die. I agree.

Now, if Clarence Thomas is an "Uncle Tom" for participating in a lynching, then what is Obama for not saying anything about it?

We know that Davis was placed on death row with only eyewitness testimony. Many of those witnesses have recanted and one of the two witnesses who did not recant is said to have done the crime. We also know that there is a Georgia law that says if there is perjury in a case that the decision must be vacated.

What is more, even jurors who served in the case said that they felt as if they did not have all the facts.

One thing is now certain, we do have all the facts, and Obama is wrong for not trying to save this man's life. He played politics on this one. Period!

(Rob Redding, known as "America's Independent Voice", is editor, publisher and syndicated talk radio host of Redding News Review).

Just getting started.  LW
It was a legal lynching.  They are using the failed judicial system to lynch us now.

If we don't take a stance now, it will happen again, and soon......

http://www.freerodneystanberry.com/

As a student of Criminal Justice and a fanatic of the law, I would like to think that I can invest a great level of passion and faith into this field; However, when a case like this comes to light, it serves as a wake up call. We cannot blindly trust the law to deliver justice, as the terms are not synonymous.

 

Aside from the controversy of the death penalty --whether or not it is wrong-- we must look at the specific faults in legislature present today. Why is it that a capital punishment case cannot be retried in lieu of new evidence? How can phony testimonies (primary basis for the conviction against Davis) hold upright even after they are established to have been speculative and wrong altogether? For any criminal proceeding, the justice system only allows a retrial or an acquittal when a defendant's due process rights is violated. This action is not called for when a mistake of fact has occurred (ie. new evidence comes about exonerating a death row inmate, this will not be heard!).

 

How can this be? We as a society are already on shaky grounds when we implement the death penalty, when we judge others by our own morals and standards and facilitate their deaths, taking on the responsibility of a higher power, so to speak. This calls for a very delicate manner of handling cases like this one. We ignore this completely when we set the same standards and requirements to retry a capital punishment case as any other criminal case, such as larceny or burglary. No, they are not the same! We are dealing with a human life here! If new evidence comes to light which can possibly free a death row inmate from criminal liability and therefore death, let us hear it! Let us not deny a human being any chances of recuperating his or her precious life. This would be a great step in finding a middle ground between the advocates and opponents of the death penalty.

 

Also, let us not make this an issue of race. What happened to Davis constitutes a major breach in justice, but his death will not be in vain if and when we change the unjust laws set in place which lead to his death. Like this, we are protecting all of our citizens alike, black and white, and everything in between. When we see an injustice being committed, let us first analyze and examine the root of it in the law. Let us become advocates and take legislative action to change certain unfair and excessive laws such as this one. Color blindly, let us protect the interests of society as a whole.

 

Much love to Travis and Cornel :)

 

-Vanessa

  The execution of Troy Davis is an act of unspeakable state-sponsored murder and political terrorism designed to intimidate those who dare dissent against the vested power of a white police state.

  How do we ask black citizens in America to respect a system of law in which Troy Davis is executed?  How can we profess that this nation's guarantee of equitablle Constitutional rights is color-blind when Troy Davis was denied clemency owing principally to the color of his skin?  How can we possibly speak of justice in America and Troy Davis in the same breath with any semblance of credibility or expectation of public acceptance?  The callous disregard for this man's civil liberties is a national disgrace; not merely an egregious racial injustice, but a flagrant crime against humanity, common decency, and basic morality.

  Nor is it right or sufficient for us to simply grieve for Troy Davis and his family.  We must dedicate ourselves to making his death the catalyst for a comprehensive overhaul of our entire criminal justice system such that a state-sponsored act of racial muder like this can never again occur in America.  Only in this way can we ever hope to render even a semblance of justice to this tragic figure, albeit posthumously.  Let us turn the death of Troy Davis into a triumphant new dawn for fair and impartial justice in America that he is at last remembered as the individual whose pleas for justice at last found receptive ears and resolute hearts through establishment of a new system of law where the state is just, the damned redeemed, and the innocent set free.

In Georgia, murder they wrote.

Will,

Thank you very much. I could not have said it better. Thank you for sending a clear message to break rank with color or race and camp on the side of truth and justice. It takes a special breed of Americans, Americans not wearing blinkers, Americans not fettered by loads of historical baggage and repugnant racial realities, to call a spade a spade. America needs Americans who are sufficiently mentally and lovingly united to recognize that when one of US is threatened, we are all threatened. As Americans, at that point, nothing else should matter but pristine Americanism.

It should not matter whether Troy Davis had been White and Lawrence Brewer Black; the issue should have been whether justice was served and seen to be served; given material evidence adduced, presented, argued, and considered. Common law did not eventually yield to the reasonable, moderating influence of equity as a mundane matter of historical happenstance, it did because a large enough number of reasonable people insisted and fought for it. They wondered how a man could go to prison for 10 to 15 years for stealing $1000 (grand larceny), but another could wantonly abuse public trust and fraudulently ship billions of dollars to accomplices under questionable circumstances and for dubious purposes without as much as spending one day in jail! What kind of jaundiced justice is that? A mega-fraudster and conspirator is allowed to negotiate his way out of prospects of life imprisonment by agreeing to return a fraction of his loot, the State runs with the deal. Whatever happened to the 'j' in justice? 

With due respect for supporters and opponents of the death penalty, the matter for the moment and strategically for the long haul is not about death penalty per se, it is about justice. A situation where robotic adherence to legalistic procedure and classic anachronism is allowed to trump a search for justice can only make mockery of the judicial system and give the "Fair Lady" a black eye.

Thank you, Will; for adding yours to growing voices of reason on the Troy Davis State murder. Hiding behind the cloak of arrant bureaucracy, in Georgia, murder they wrote.

Will Ruha said:

  The execution of Troy Davis is an act of unspeakable state-sponsored murder and political terrorism designed to intimidate those who dare dissent against the vested power of a white police state.

  How do we ask black citizens in America to respect a system of law in which Troy Davis is executed?  How can we profess that this nation's guarantee of equitablle Constitutional rights is color-blind when Troy Davis was denied clemency owing principally to the color of his skin?  How can we possibly speak of justice in America and Troy Davis in the same breath with any semblance of credibility or expectation of public acceptance?  The callous disregard for this man's civil liberties is a national disgrace; not merely an egregious racial injustice, but a flagrant crime against humanity, common decency, and basic morality.

  Nor is it right or sufficient for us to simply grieve for Troy Davis and his family.  We must dedicate ourselves to making his death the catalyst for a comprehensive overhaul of our entire criminal justice system such that a state-sponsored act of racial muder like this can never again occur in America.  Only in this way can we ever hope to render even a semblance of justice to this tragic figure, albeit posthumously.  Let us turn the death of Troy Davis into a triumphant new dawn for fair and impartial justice in America that he is at last remembered as the individual whose pleas for justice at last found receptive ears and resolute hearts through establishment of a new system of law where the state is just, the damned redeemed, and the innocent set free.

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