Amnesty International has just begun a 200-minute vigil outside the Harris County Criminal Courthouse to protest the upcoming 200th execution under Governor Rick Perry.
The original rally title, "Help Rick Perry Win The GOP Primary," was apparently discarded.
But holding an anti-death-penalty vigil in Harris County? Why? We don't execute people anymore. Well, at least not as much as we used to.
AI will also be issuing a report calling for Perry to commute the death penalties of two inmates scheduled to die who they say are schizophrenic, including one who ate his own eyeball in jail. (We don't want to guess what his last meal request will be.)
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Expect Perry to jump right on that.
But AI does make a good case that much of the rest of the country is moving beyond the death penalty, for whatever reason.
"The state's cavalier attitude toward capital punishment is fast becoming an anachronism in the rest of the United States," said Sue Gunawardena-Vaughn, Death Penalty Abolition Campaign director for AIUSA. "At a time when Texas' neighbor to the west has demonstrated considerable leadership in abolishing the death penalty, Texas continues to execute without mercy. The 200th execution is a macabre milestone that should give pause to Gov. Perry and the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles, who have the power to chart a new course, rather than mindlessly following standard operating procedure."
As to whether a "macarbe milestone" will ever affect Rick Perry....probably not. But points for trying, AI.