Nov 232011

I will not be going to do volunteer work in the prison this month.  Not only am I not well enough yet, but also, our meeting was cancelled so that staff could practice for an execution scheduled early next month.  I had planned, and partially written an article for that occasion, stating that was one of the few times I was not proud to be an Oregonian.  Thanks to John Kitzhaber, Oregon’s Democratic Governor, that article will not see the light of day.

23KitzGov. John Kitzhaber announced today that he is halting the scheduled Dec. 6 execution of Gary Haugen and won’t allow any executions to occur while he is governor.

Kitzhaber’s bombshell came the day after the Oregon Supreme Court said that it would allow the lethal injection execution of the twice-convicted murderer to go forward.

In slamming the brakes on Oregon’s first execution in 14 years, the Democrat governor said the state’s death penalty system is “broken” and he vowed to push for reforms in the 2013 legislative session.

“It is time for this state to consider a different approach,” Kitzhaber said. “I refuse to be a part of a compromised and inequitable system any longer; and I will not allow further executions to take place while I am governor.”

Under Oregon’s constitution, governors have sweeping power to grant reprieves, commutations and pardons for those convicted of crimes.

Kitzhaber said he was exercising his authority to issue a temporary reprieve for Haugen, lasting “for the duration of my term in office.”… [emphasis added]

Inserted from <The Statesman Journal>

Here’s the video of Kitz’s statement.

Thank you Governor.  I remain proud to be an Oregonian.  It’s time for the US to join the civilized nations of the world by outlawing capital punishment once and for all.

Sep 202011

From CURE National:

Dear Fellow Abolitionists,

Just a few minutes ago, the Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles issued its denial of clemency for Troy Davis. As disappointing as this is, the famous Joe Hill quote from before he was executed comes to mind: "Don’t waste any time in mourning. Organize…!" NCADP’s statement is here and below.

But first, Troy Davis is not dead yet!

Right now, please immediately act and urge the parole board to reconsider their decision. Please politely e-mail the board members at or fax their office at (404) 651-8502.

Then, click here to join us in calling on the Board to reconsider its decision, and on the Chatham County (Savannah) District Attorney Larry Chisolm to do the right thing. They have until the final moments before Troy’s scheduled execution to put the brakes on this runaway justice system.

Then, join a local demonstration, or initiate one yourself. Today is a Day of Protest to express our outrage at the recent decision to deny Troy Davis clemency. And on Wednesday (Sept. 21), we’re calling for a Day of Vigil on Troy’s impending execution date.

If you are able to organize locally for either of these events, please click to tell our partners at Amnesty International USA about your plans.

If you can’t make it to a local demonstration, please help NCADP continue this important work to end the death penalty once and for all.

Everyone is encouraged to wear a black armband, with "not in my name!" written on it.

In Atlanta, there will be a protest rally at the state capitol tonight at 7pm EDT (Washington Street side).

In Washington, DC, we’ll be back at Tivoli Square (Columbia Heights Metro stop) tonight at 6pm EDT.

Everywhere else: protests are encouraged. Check with your state coalition to see what plans they have.

Tomorrow (Wednesday 9/21) will be a "Day of Vigil." Wear your black armband, with "not in my name!" written on it. We’ll post further info later tonight or in the morning. For now we know that there will be a vigil in Jackson across from the prison at Towaliga County Line Baptist Church and a vigil in Atlanta on the capitol steps. Everywhere else: vigils are encouraged. Check with your state coalition to see what plans they have.

Again , while we are focused today on saving the life of a man accused of murder where there remains so much doubt about his guilt, we remember Officer Mark MacPhail and urge you to keep his family and the families of all victims in your thoughts and prayers. We know this must be very difficult for them….

Also , for those of us with children, talking about this situation becomes more difficult. NCADP’s Michael Stone blogged about doing so and shares a recent article, here.

Please know that NCADP is invested in this case because its the right thing to do, and also because so many of the aspects of this case speak to the same issues that are present in so many other cases which are not nearly as high-profile. Troy Davis is already a household name, and because our our collective action, over the next few days, many more people will learn of the systemic failures of the death penalty, and join our movement.

There is so much to do, and we want to do more. Thank you for ta king action , and if you are able, please also take a moment to support NCADP so that we can continue this important work, now, and in the future. Please remember that through the end of September, all new donors to NCADP will have their tax-deductible contribution doubled by a special matching grant from Atlantic Philanthropies. Click here to donate today. Thank you.

Finally, it must be said that Troy Davis is not the only person scheduled to be executed in the coming weeks and months. Of particular note is tonight’s execution in Texas of Cleve Foster. NCADP lists every upcoming execution on the top right side of its web page, and you can click on each name to learn more and take action via our State Affiliate where the execution is scheduled.

Thank you.

Official NCADP Statement on the denial of clemency for Troy Davis

"The National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty is stunned and disappointed.

"There can be no clearer indication than the Board of Pardons and Paroles decision today, that the system is profoundly and unalterably broken.

"Each institution in Georgia that was charged with the responsibility of doing justice in this case has failed.

"And now the Board of Pardons and Parole has failed miserably even though they had every opportunity to do their job properly.

"It is now clearer than ever — that the only way to prevent an innocent man from being executed in Georgia is to end the death penalty in that state once and for all.

"We pledge to work with our sisters and brothers in Georgia who have worked tirelessly to prevent the travesty of justice in the Troy Davis case and to retire the peculiar institution known as capital punishment, brick by brick."

Contact us at Please join NCADP on Facebook or LinkedIn, follow us on Twitter, read more on our website, blog, or at the Huffington Post, and contribute online.

I have called.  I hope you will.