Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Larger than you might expect

Here is a link to a 10/7/10 Connecticut Public Radio interview with MVFHR Board Chair Vicki Schieber. The description of the show says

Listen to the audio to hear a remarkable conversation with Vicki Schieber, who opposed the death penalty for the murder of her daughter, and Mike Fitzpatrick, a defense attorney who has worked on capital cases in Connecticut.

In 2002, making the final public appearance of her life, an old woman named Mamie Till-Mobley addressed the Governor of Illinois with the following words:

“I am pleased that I am able to stand here today and say with a pure heart and a meaningful heart that I am against the death penalty. There is no purpose that it serves except to further the damage that has already been done.”

You may not recognize her name, but you do know her story. Mamie Till-Mobley was the mother of Emmett Till, a 14 year old black boy murdered in Missisippi in 1955. The two white men who beat him to death were acquitted by an all-white jury after about an hour of deliberation.

Mamie Till-Mobley joined a group -- larger than you might expect -- of bereaved people who conclude that the death penalty won't bring them peace. In her case, there wasn't even an alternate form of justice offered up.

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