Weekly Report from the Board Meeting at Holman Prison 6.1.16
Yesterday the” U.S. Supreme Court granted review in a second Alabama case in which the judge imposed a death sentence after a jury failed to unanimously vote for death. The Court vacated the state court's judgment upholding Corey Wimbley's death sentence and remanded for reconsideration in light of Hurst.” Great News! Lots of discussion about this and also that the action came “as the nation’s high court has slowed down in its granting of new cases for next term in the wake of its continued status as an eight-justice court. Since Justice Antonin Scalia’s death on February 13, the court has only granted certiorari a handful of new cases for next term.”
We also discussed the special ramifications of an abolitionist organization located on death row, its strengths and its weaknesses. As we are well aware of what we can’t do the focus of the discussion was on what we can do. One of our strengths is that we are able to link with and support sister organizations. The following are two such examples.
The Annual Fast and Vigil outside the U.S. Supreme Court was started by the AAC(Abolition Action Committee) in 1994 and was attended by a handful of abolitionists from across the United States. This annual event has grown steadily, and by 1998 more than 150 people attended part or all of the event, including at least 30 individuals who fasted at the Court or in solidarity with those at the Court. This year Project Hope to Abolish the Death Penalty accepted the invitation to become a co-sponsor of the event which begins 6.29.16 and ends 7.29.16. http://www.facebook.com/fastandvigil. http://www.abolition.org/fastandvigil . We wish we could attend!
Closer to home is the Selma Center for Nonviolence, Truth & Reconciliation. We quote from part of its mission: “The Selma Center for Nonviolence, Truth and Reconciliation envisions the Beloved Community as a world where there is a spirit of cooperation, where people’s similarities and differences are celebrated, and where policies in government and community institutions, as well as the culture they create, support fairness, equity, harmony, compassion and love in our interactions, as well as the sharing and preservation of resources for generations to come.
Through building people up with the power of love, instruction and utilizing Kingian nonviolence and conflict resolution as our primary philosophies, the Center works to create a shift in our way of life. We will also work in solidarity with all people of goodwill to create local sector-level changes in areas such as our justice system, economy, and social/cultural institutions that make Dr. King's vision of the Beloved Community a defining part of our everyday lives in Selma and beyond.” Ainka Sanders Jackson is its executive director and in a special message wrote that I could also add that “the Center engages in work to end the school to prison pipeline and mass incarceration and supports efforts to abolish the death penalty.”
What can we do? Perhaps we can help drive some people to its face book page and its webpage www.selmacenterfornonviolence and, even better, encourage them to support this great work.
See you next week!