On Race and Justice: An Apology, An Indictment

by Abby Zimet from Common Dreams

While many people view “Stand Your Ground” laws as today’s symbol for what’s wrong with our criminal justice system, a suggestion we look deeper and further – to the country’s long history of racial bias in jury selection, especially in death penalty cases. Last week, a North Carolina judge vacated the death sentence of Marcus Robinson under the state’s Racial Justice Act citing a “wealth of evidence showing the persistent, pervasive, and distorting role of race in jury selection” – the first time racial bias has been rejected as unacceptable since the 25-year-old Supreme Court ruling in McCleskey v. Kemp that such bias is an “inevitable part of our criminal justice system,” and so be it. Meanwhile, the executions – technically legal, but relatively rare – go on, with Texas accounting for over a third of the total. The Economist maps out each one since 1976.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>