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Hullabaloo


Monday, March 17, 2014

 
Justifiable homicide

by digby

This is ridiculous:

Florida has executed 84 people since the Supreme Court announced the modern death penalty regime in 1976. Zero of them are white people sentenced to death for killing an African American. Indeed, according to the American Civil Liberties Union, “no white person has ever been executed for killing an African American” in the state of Florida.

Nor is Florida particularly unusual in the racial impact of its death penalty. In Alabama, 6 percent of murders involve black defendants and white victims, but 60 percent of black death row inmates were convicted of murdering a white person. In Louisiana, a death sentence is 97 percent more likely in murder cases where the victim is white.

Nationwide, only 20 white people have been executed since 1976 for killing a black person. By contrast, 269 black defendants were executed for killing someone who is white.

This system is so arbitrary that to execute anyone makes a mockery of the idea of equal protection and justice. Clearly nobody should be executed.

And in case anyone thinks that white people don't kill black people in Florida, well, we only have to look at a couple of fellows named George Zimmerman and Michael Dunn to know otherwise. Or this, for that matter:
On October 23, 1945, the Brooklyn Dodgers announced that they had signed Jackie Robinson, assigning him to their International League team, the Montreal Royals. Branch Rickey, the Brooklyn Dodgers General Manager, believing he "knew" Florida, thought his team could train there, ruffling as few feathers as possible. Robinson and his wife were instructed by Rickey not to try to stay at any Sanford hotels. He and his wife did not eat out at any restaurants not deemed “Negro restaurants." He did not even dress in the same locker room as his teammates.

As soon as the citizenry became aware of Robinson's presence, the mayor of Sanford was confronted by a "large group of white residents" who "demanded that Robinson...be run out of town."

On March 5, 1946, the Royals were informed that they would not be permitted to take the field as an integrated group. Rickey was concerned for Robinson’s life and sent him to stay in Daytona Beach. His daughter, Sharon Robinson, remembered being told, "The Robinsons were run out of Sanford, Florida, with threats of violence."
Also too, the Rosewood massacre, along with countless other examples of white on black violence in Florida.

Let's just say that Florida has a long history of racial violence. And it's more than willing to execute people. It's just unusually forgiving of white people who kill black people.


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