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Three federal death row people executed; MLK - the white-washing; supervised injection cites ruled illegal in PA; TX judge seeks 2,000 jail releases in face of COVID-19 — your weekly justice news


MLK day: The white washing of MLK’s assassination. The Atlantic (Feb. 2018)

Part of that price included reconciling American values with the fact that whiteness and the state had colluded to end King and the revolution. For white America, hostility toward the civil-rights movement turned into a cherry-picked celebration of the revolution’s victories over segregation and over easily caricatured, gap-toothed bigots in the South. Embracing King became a way to rejoice in overcoming and to reify white innocence, even while ignoring the cries of those who had certainly not overcome. Accordingly, the life of King past mid-1965, a radical three years spent fighting a tide that had turned against him, is barely mentioned today.

setback: A Philly judge ruled that supervised injection cites are illegal, dealing a blow to Do No Harm addiction services. NPR (Jan. 14, 2021)

$$$: Illinois ends cash bail and also avoids replacing it with surveillance devices and algorithms though boosted as a reform which often have similarly racist effects. The changes will start in 2023. The Intercept (Jan. 17, 2021)

the deaths: Last week, three people were executed on federal death row: Lisa Montgomery, Cory Johnson and Dustin Higgs after supreme court appeals failed. Justice Sotomayor dissented to the court in Higgs’ appeal. An excerpt is below:

Throughout this expedited spree of executions, this Court has consistently rejected inmates’ credible claims for relief. The Court has even intervened to lift stays of execution that lower courts put in place, thereby ensuring those prisoners’ challenges would never receive a meaningful airing. The Court made these weighty decisions in response to emergency applications, with little opportunity for proper briefing and consideration, often in just a few short days or even hours. Very few of these decisions offered any public explanation for their rationale. This is not justice. After waiting almost two decades to resume federal executions, the Government should have proceeded with some measure of restraint to ensure it did so lawfully. When it did not, this Court should have. It has not. Because the Court continues this pattern today, I dissent. (Jan. 15, 2021)

the price tag: Expenses for five executions in two months last year cost $4.7 million: a $6,300 bus and a $33 Last Meal. The Marshall Project (Jan. 14, 2021)

stopped: A Baltimore violence interrupter was shot to death after leading a crime-fighting initiative for more than a decade. Baltimore Sun (Jan. 17, 2021)

infiltrated: More than a dozen law enforcement agencies are investigating their own members for participation in the Capitol riots. It underscores white supremacy in police and military. The Center for Public Integrity (Jan. 15, 2021)

reform: Ohio stops life sentences for juvenile crimes. The Appeal (Jan. 13, 2021)

let them go: A Texas judge tries again to release 2,000 people in a Harris County jail in the face of COVID-19. He wants to avoid a “killing field.” LMT Online (Jan. 15, 2021)

rabbit hole: A self-proclaimed Antifa activist who has been shot-down by actual Black Lives Matter Activists is arrested after filming the Capitol riot. It’s one of those confusing who are you really stories that remind you to look behind every façade. The Intercept (Jan. 14, 2021)

COVID-19 resources: State policy changesNewsBureau of Prisons updatesState court changesPrison holistic self care and protection.

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