Sunday, December 11, 2005

death wish II

Mexico abolished the death penalty last Friday. The Mexican government hasn't 'officially' executed anyone since 1961. What that stat might actually mean is unclear.

A Boston Globe op-ed today describes legal execution of convicted criminals 'our duty'. It rejects the USCCB's pronouncement of last month and extensively quotes from the Old Testament in support of the death penalty.

I saw the movie Capote a couple of weeks ago. It tells the story of author Truman Capote and his writing of the true crime novel In Cold Blood.

His relationship with condemned murderer Perry Smith is, perhaps, a thumbprint of America's ambivalence toward the topic. Capote exerts himself to find lawyers and extend the appeal process for Smith with the possibility of reversing his sentence. But his motives are far from humanitarian. He needs the whole story of what happened that fatal night at the Kansas farmhouse where the murders occurred. He also needs Smith to be executed.

His book depends on it.