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Take a minute to read this editorial from the Chicago Tribune, published yesterday, highlighting the flaws in the death penalty system:
Chicago Tribune: IT CAN'T BE FIXED
7:13 p.m. CST, January 5, 2011
As the General Assembly inches toward a momentous decision on whether to end capital punishment in Illinois, state prosecutors are lobbying hard to stall a vote. Lame-duck lawmakers are hustling to pass a bill without getting the facts, the Illinois State's Attorneys Association says.
Nonsense. Lawmakers have had 10 years to reflect — and act — on the failures of a system that sent at least 20 innocent men to death row. Illinois hasn't executed an inmate since 1999, the year before then-Gov. George Ryan declared a moratorium that continues to this day.
Three years later, Ryan emptied the state's death row, commuting the sentences of 167 condemned inmates and pardoning four others.
The death penalty hurts, rather than helps, people who have lost relatives and loved ones to violent crimes. In order to make this point known, a number of murder victim family members recently signed a letter addressed to our state legislators, calling for an end to capital punishment in the state of Illinois.
For the full statement, click on the attachment below.
ICADP's December E-Newsletter is hot off the press! View a PDF copy by clicking on the attachment below.
You may have already heard about our plan to pass repeal bill, SB 3539, during the first Lame-duck session of the General Assembly in January. But we need your help! ICADP would love to see a great crowd of abolitionists down in Springfield lobbying in support of our bill, so we're hosting another Lobby Day on Tuesday, January 4th. Your voice and presence at the state capitol will go a long way to encourage legislators to vote YES on SB 3539, and together we can end the death penalty in the state of Illinois.
Click the link to register for January Lobby Day:
We need your help this very minute! Representatives in the House will be in veto session one last time this morning, and are likely to vote on SB3539, the bill to repeal Illinois' death penalty. Please call your representatives right away with a final request to vote 'YES' on our repeal bill, even if you have already contacted them several times before. We may be as close as 2 VOTES in the House so your phone call really matters at this time.
To reach your Representatives in Springfield this morning please call the capitol switchboard at 217-782-2000 and ask to be patched through to their offices. To look up who your legislators are, please click this link:
We are almost there, but we still need your help to make abolition a reality. Time is running out, so please call right away! Thank you.