Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Time for you to cool off

Well the Governator has denied clemency to Stanley Tookie Williams, ex joint founder of the crips gang in LA, and convicted murderer of four people. He dies tomorrow US West time at 12.01.

This is of course, an angry black man with issues. As can be seen by the photo from his Crips heyday. And the fact that he murdered people (though he claims innocence for some of those crimes) cannot be disputed.


Left: Angry, angry young man.

But here in lies one of the core problems of Capital Punishment. The ability to repent or make amends for your crimes when you have been executed, or will be in days, months, or in Tookie's case, decades later.

Now in the Governator’s statement of claims regarding why Tookie should die, see here, which by the way does not actually appear to be all the Governator’s own work ("Arnold, look me in the eye. Did you write this?" .. "Yes Miss Tonkenmeyer, it is all my own vords"), he claims that Tookie has failed to redeem since he did not stitch former team mates up. And despite receiving a commendation for his work in negotiating a reduction in gang violence in LA from no less than President Bush II (more Bush, more often), the Governator decided that because there was still gang violence that meant no clemency for Williams.

The Governator also manages to dismiss a number of questionable elements of prosecution evidence on some of the murders, which relied heavily on accomplices testimony I note, by hand waving a ‘yes, these were looked at and denied by appeals judges.’

Which I suppose is fair enough, since the Californian courts are known for their ability to 100% guarantee the rights of the accused during their legal process. And the Californian police naturally are above board and don't fiddle with evidence at all. Or beat up black motorists.

Be all that as it may, Tookie has done as much as anyone can on death row to atone – without stitching up his former gang members (one of the ‘he must die’ claims). Which is ironic since had he stitched up former gang members, then his ability to be a broker for street peace would be about as small as one of the Governator’s steroid reverse swollen testicles.

What can you do in the US penal system to atone, and repent and gain recognition for this? Seemingly nothing. Governor Bush, as another one time presidential aspirant (though unlike Arnie not barred from the top job because of his non US birthing), likewise executed someone who had repented. She’d been a model prisoner, converted to Christianity, and met her end with quiet good grace. Of course this did not matter to Bush, who proceeded to sign more death warrants than any governor before him. But then considering his propensity to start wars that cost 100,000 lives, then really should we be actually surprised.

It seems the primitive adage of an eye for an eye is alive and well in the US of A. Which was one of the first legal mechanisms employed by embryonic societies. There are Sumerian tablets for example that list such laws, such as if a builder builds a house that falls down and it kills the son of the occupant, that the son of the builder should likewise be killed. Like I said, primitive.

Fortunately for Tookie his death will be by the more advanced and apparently humane lethal injection, as opposed to dropping a house on him like in Sumeria. He will get to say some final words to the family members of those he was convicted of killing, who get to watch from behind a glass screen. And the details of his last meal will be posted on a website somewhere. Oh and some sombre faced corrections officer will announce when Tookie was pronounced dead.

"Justice” at last. I hope that those Americans that were diverted from a hopeless cycle of poverty and cultural fuelled violence and despair by what Tookie achieved despite being banged up and facing the Reaper, look to him with quiet appreciation for avoiding a ‘but there for the grace of God go I’ similar fate.

It seems it doesn’t matter how sorry you are, and how much effort you put in to make amends, you can’t be forgiven from a sentence of death in the US of A, home of the free and the brave and the compassionate.

After-all, you start showing signs of humanity, and the toxic right wing of US politics will come down on you like a Valkyrie toting an automatic weapon in each hand.

Actually, I think Arnie would like that. "You and me bay-bee, right here, right now. I have scheduled a meeting for you ... in bed."

For a more balanced view on Tookie Williams, see his wiki entry here. I note with morbid fascination that they already have his life closed off with his end date, bracketed with ‘(scheduled)’ after it.

God bless America.

By the way, the inability for repentance to be factored in is just one of the many ways I am against the death penalty (see previous blog on Van Ngyuen). At the end of the day Capital punishment cheapens life, and reinforces the concept that the cycle of violence and hate can somehow be slowed by the application of violence and hate. The death penalty, like torture, in all its forms, and for all its reasons, is abhorrent and immoral, and it makes society lesser for it. And that blanket statement of 'No Death Penalty for all' goes for all the worst scum of humanity too, such as pederasts and genocidal heads of state that start wars and cost the lives of thousands of innocents.

Like Saddam Hussein … and President Bush.

4 comments:

  1. The real reason Ah-nuld denied clemency is because he has already copped so much criticism from the right wing of the Republican Party during his time in office that his advisors felt it would be unwise to grant mercy. After all, the Republican way is to first ask "what would Jesus do?"

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  2. Well he's dead now.

    Washington Post

    Fuck I hate idiots that glorify death. And considering violence on televisions and movies is regarded as a contributing factor to the rise of aggression in children and Arnold's former career.

    As Arnold said in one of his movies.

    (Holds witness up so they can see themselves in a mirror)

    "Witness this"

    (BANG)

    So much for the great hope of the working with both sides politician.

    Arnie - you are a twat.

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  3. I should note that Tookie claimed innocence to the crimes he was convicted of, and repented in the sense that he tried to undo what he helped create with the gangs subculture in LA.

    But even if he had copped to the crime, he still would have been judicially murdered I think.

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  4. Well, I have no idea what The State has gained by doing this. And as for claims of innocence, there's nothing that could be done about them anymore if they were true.

    To me, the main problem with the death penalty is the fact that there are no take-backs. You can't undead a person.

    It's all a symptom of a "Christian" country that prefers to follow the vengeful ass-whuppin' strong patriarch of the Old Testament rather than following the loving, forgiving son of the New Testament.

    Christian in name only.

    ReplyDelete

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