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Weekly Report from the Board Meeting at Holman Prison 3.24.21

                          Weekly Report from the Board Meeting at Holman Prison 3.24.21

We thank  Rep. Neil Rafferty (D-Birmingham) who sponsored HB 544 and cosponsors Reps. Rolanda Hollis (D-Birmingham), Adline Clarke (D-Mobile) and Laura Hall (D-Huntsville).The bill  would end the death penalty as a potential sentence in Alabama. We now hope that some Senators will follow their good example and also that of VA which abolished the death penalty today!

It is said that he who represents himself has a fool for a client and we very much agree with that. At the same time we also like that saying, a little conceited perhaps, that your attorney is as good as you make her/him. Definitely for many of us in Alabama, the only state which does not provide post conviction representation, which means that many of us are represented by out of state attorneys, that saying is an important one to keep in mind. During the past year with Covid 19 and attorneys not working from their office making it more than very difficult for us to reach them it is imperative that we keep on top of developments in the legal field. In that context we have followed the developments and arguments in the Richard Glossip case in OK and some of us found issues that might apply to us,

Naturally the Toforest Johnson case, closer to home, continues to be part of our discussions. We look  forward to reading the chapter devoted to this case in Attorney Richard S. Jaffe’s latest book “Quest for Justice. Defending the Damned” with which Attorney Jaffe is graciously gifting us. We will of course recognize other cases of friends in this book and definitely like, and we quote it’s author that “ the book is mostly about the inhumanness of the death penalty.”

“The issue of POETRY magazine with Darrell's poem is out. Here's a link. Darrell's poem can be read online. This is just a wonderful, wonderful thing!” wrote Advisory Board Member, Dale Wisely. We thank all who made this happen and were pleased to learn that Darrell Grayson’s poetry our former Chairman until his execution in 2007, is being taught in a correspondence class conducted at Limestone Correction Facility.

 https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poetrymagazine/issue/155204/february-2021

 In closing and as always, we continue to thank all our generous donors who either gave by going to our website and using the “donate” button or who gave directly. Thank you also to all who took the time to read our notes, commented, liked and shared them on Facebook. You encourage us and make all the difference. Stay safe!         

                                                                                                          Esther