- Earlier this week, I blogged some of my feelings on the death penalty. The post centered around the epistemic problem of how we can ever really know the man (or woman) we’re executing is innocent. This morning, at Above The Law, Elie Mystal blogged his own polemic against the death penalty, one that put aside the question of actual innocence of some Death Row inmates and that focused on how contrary to human dignity the administration of the death penalty is. As Mystal wrote, “The state of Georgia MURDERED an unarmed man last night, and we’re debating whether or not they considered all of the relevant evidence? We’re debating the process by which Georgia came to the conclusion it had the right to terminate the life of another man? This is what passes as civilized? Freaking Batman — who is a lawless vigilante — won’t murder a defenseless Joker even after Batman personally witnesses the Joker killing hundreds, and we applaud Batman for his heroic restraint.” Given Mystal’s position on the death penalty and his challenge to us to look the death penalty in the eye, I am sure that Mystal was happy to see the news that Texas is abolishing the customary last meal for death row inmates. The ritual of the last meal is something that makes the death penalty look a lot more humane than it is.
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