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DISSONANCE: Tookie’s Inhumanity - An argument for sparing a cold-blooded killer
LA Weekly ^ | 12/8/5 | MARC COOPER

Posted on 12/07/2005 9:03:28 PM PST by SmithL

This week Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger will decide whether the convicted murderer and co-founder of the Crips gang, Stanley “Tookie” Williams, lives or dies. But that’s all that should be decided. Not whether Williams has been redeemed. Merely, will he be executed on December 13?

I’m a death penalty abolitionist and therefore believe, deeply, that capital punishment is wrong; that it is barbaric, that it belittles all of us, whether or not its victims are innocent or guilty as charged.

The celebrity campaign championing Williams, I suppose, is a tactical necessity to draw attention to his case. When Schwarzenegger holds the first California clemency hearing since 1992 this week to decide his fate, the governor, after all, will be judging Williams, not the overall immorality of capital punishment.

And while I believe Williams (and everyone else on death row) should not be put to death, I find myself extremely uncomfortable with any notion that Williams has been redeemed. There can be no redemption for someone like Williams. There can only be contrition. Only a commutation of sentence. Not elevation to sainthood.

When a convicted killer or his supporters claim “rehabilitation” I think it becomes fair game to see what the starting point is of their personal journey. How much do they have to make up for? That’s not to say individuals can’t or shouldn’t be rehabilitated nor that we shouldn’t applaud them when they do undergo some change.

In Williams’ case, he starts out in a very deep and dark hole. His four victims were horribly massacred. No court in the land, including the liberal 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, has seen enough exculpatory evidence to overturn his conviction.

Nor does Williams deny his central role in organizing our own local Murder Inc., the Crips. I accept at face value his claims to rehabilitation. I know he has written children’s books; that he has advocated gang truces; that he has renounced violence; that some Swiss professor, somehow, nominated him for a Nobel Peace Prize.

Great. In my ledger books, that might — I repeat, might — balance out the wholesale evil that Williams has wrought earlier in life. Ask me what I feel about him, and if in a generous mood, I would stay coldly and begrudgingly neutral. Ask me to celebrate him, however, and I’m likely to go the other way. While his sentence stems from the murder of four individuals, any judgment of Tookie Williams, the man, must also weigh the terminated lives of literally hundreds of poor, black youth who had no trials, no appeals and no defense campaigns before they were summarily executed by the Crips’ shooters.

The larger question, as Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson put it earlier this week, is how do we view Williams’ case against the larger backdrop of America’s brimming death row? Robinson, as I, repudiates capital punishment but adds, “it can’t be right to save Williams just because he’s a famous desperado (or former desperado) with famous friends, and then blithely go back to snuffing out the lives of other criminals who lack his talent for public relations.”

More than 3,000 people currently sit on death row, slowly awaiting execution. About one of five are in California. Blacks and whites have been the victims of murder in almost equal numbers, but 80 percent of those executed since 1977 were convicted of murders of white people. And more than 40 percent of those awaiting execution are blacks.

The most shocking statistic in this stew is that a full third or more of death-row prisoners don’t have legal representation. It’s a fair assumption that most of the condemned are, indeed, guilty. Many are neither remorseful nor rehabilitated. Except for the ubiquitous Mumia Abu-Jamal and now Tookie Williams, none of them have the notable and the famous lobbying passionately for their lives. They remain as anonymous and as forgotten as their victims — including Williams’ victims.

All those inmates deserve commutation as much as Williams. It’s my sincere hope that Governor Schwarzenegger, for whatever reasons he might have in his head, will do the right thing and grant clemency. Then we all better sit down and figure out how we, once and for all, do away with this barbaric device of the death penalty without having to lionize those who, in the end, richly deserve a life behind bars without parole.


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Editorial; Government; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections; US: California
KEYWORDS: deathpenalty; stanleywilliams; tookie; tookiewilliams
Tookie Delenda Est!
1 posted on 12/07/2005 9:03:29 PM PST by SmithL
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To: SmithL

Terminate Tookie!


2 posted on 12/07/2005 9:06:22 PM PST by msnimje (Everyday there is a new example of the Democrats "Culture of Dementia")
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To: SmithL

I have the wine picked out and a few fire crackers ready.


3 posted on 12/07/2005 9:06:44 PM PST by ncountylee (Dead terrorists smell like victory)
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To: SmithL

Whiny puss can't go out like a man. He hasn't changed. Subhuman coward.


4 posted on 12/07/2005 9:08:46 PM PST by msf92497 (Was Republican...Now just a Conservative.)
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To: SmithL

Regardless of Arnold's actions, Tookie Williams will get something he denied his victims, a chance to live another 26 years. For that, I think Tookie's proper sentence should have been to die just like his victims. Only then would I feel my sense of proportionality to be satisfied.


5 posted on 12/07/2005 9:11:08 PM PST by JRios1968 ("Cogito, ergo FReep": I think, therefore I FReep.)
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To: SmithL
do away with this barbaric device of the death penalty without having to lionize those who, in the end, richly deserve a life behind bars without parole

Oh dear, this is so... nuanced.

6 posted on 12/07/2005 9:12:05 PM PST by Chaguito
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To: msnimje
On Laura her attorney guest said, he wondered if any of the Hollywood elites who are in support of williams, could name even one of his four victims!
7 posted on 12/07/2005 9:12:32 PM PST by aligncare (Wasted my time...got my Journalism degree)
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To: msnimje
I have 3 words "Kentucky Fried Tookie"
8 posted on 12/07/2005 9:15:36 PM PST by chaos_5
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To: ncountylee

I have the wine picked out and a few fire crackers ready.

Doesn't this make you despise hollywood even more !


9 posted on 12/07/2005 9:16:39 PM PST by newfarm4000n (God Bless America and God Bless Freedom)
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To: SmithL

"And while I believe Williams (and everyone else on death row) should not be put to death"

The author should preach this to the islamofacists who behead innocent people.
He should go and preach it directly, to their face!


10 posted on 12/07/2005 9:16:42 PM PST by Prost1 (I get my news at Free Republic!)
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To: SmithL

Terminate him now, tonight, and save the California taxpayers some money.
If Arnold reverses the cold blooded murderers sentence to life imprisonment, he not only loses a lot of votes in this part of the state, he will also lose any respect we had left for him.


11 posted on 12/07/2005 9:18:00 PM PST by AmeriBrit (HILLARY's1974 Watergate Crimes: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/925684/posts)
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To: chaos_5
Ketucky Fried Tookie.


Kentucky Fried Chicken will be nice when I tune into the broadcast on the night the zap Tookie...


But what wine goes well with an execution...red or white? Somebody help me out here.
12 posted on 12/07/2005 9:19:02 PM PST by dagoofyfoot
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To: SmithL

When stating their facts, they went the long way around and avoided saying that this will only be the 12th execution in CA in 30+ years, and Tookie will only be the 2nd black


13 posted on 12/07/2005 9:19:59 PM PST by digger48
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To: newfarm4000n
Doesn't this make you despise hollywood even more !

Don't think I could despise Hollywood more.

14 posted on 12/07/2005 9:21:54 PM PST by ncountylee (Dead terrorists smell like victory)
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To: SmithL

Too bad they can only kill him once.


15 posted on 12/07/2005 9:23:31 PM PST by Nateman
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To: SmithL

I have as much sympathy for "Tookie" as he did for his victims!

"Then we all better sit down and figure out how we, once and for all, do away with this barbaric device of the death penalty..."

DON'T include me in your "we". I voted for the death penalty! Trouble is....the system is not full-proof and the sentencing drags on for decades, costing taxpayer money.


16 posted on 12/07/2005 9:23:43 PM PST by Fruit of the Spirit
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To: dagoofyfoot

Not wine. Kill a 40, in respect to Tookie


17 posted on 12/07/2005 9:25:32 PM PST by msf92497 (Was Republican...Now just a Conservative.)
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To: Nateman

Too bad they can only kill him once.

he gets off rather lightly !


18 posted on 12/07/2005 9:27:48 PM PST by newfarm4000n (God Bless America and God Bless Freedom)
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To: SmithL

Any indication how Arnie's leaning on the clemency thing?


19 posted on 12/07/2005 9:28:12 PM PST by Ciexyz (Let us always remember, the Lord is in control.)
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To: aligncare

Good point. I also wonder if they have looked at the crime scene photos of his victims.


20 posted on 12/07/2005 9:33:39 PM PST by msnimje (Everyday there is a new example of the Democrats "Culture of Dementia")
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To: SmithL
I hope Arnold tells this fellow he will be spared. Then after he OK's the execution he calls this guy up and says "remember when I said I'd spare you? I lied! Asta la vista baby!
21 posted on 12/07/2005 9:34:56 PM PST by Nateman
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To: SmithL

Nicely put! :-) :-)


22 posted on 12/07/2005 9:35:11 PM PST by T'wit (Liberals love to do everything mom and dad told them was naughty, underhanded, malicious or sick.)
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To: msf92497

Tookie-wookie is hiding behind the skirts of leftist white women activists.


23 posted on 12/07/2005 9:37:27 PM PST by dagnabbit (Vicente Fox's opening line at the Mexico-USA summit meeting: "Bring out the Gimp!")
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To: T'wit

Hopefully, I only have another week to say that.


24 posted on 12/07/2005 9:38:53 PM PST by SmithL (There are a lot of people that hate Bush more than they hate terrorists)
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To: SmithL

You people are leaving something very important out--

Where were the buses??

Where been the gubmint buses?!


25 posted on 12/07/2005 9:42:37 PM PST by emiller
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To: SmithL
this barbaric device of the death penalty

Allowing murderers to live in comfort while their victims rot in the grave and the victims' families grieve for a lifetime--now, that's barbaric.

26 posted on 12/07/2005 9:43:31 PM PST by denydenydeny ("As a Muslim of course I am a terrorist"--Sheikh Omar Brooks, quoted in the London Times 8/7/05)
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To: dagnabbit

Hope Arnold does the right thing and this scum goes away, but, its not the most important thing going in LA LA land. Cut taxes, reduce regs., fix the schools, reduce traffic, help USC win the NC game, do these things now.
AS for Tookie, who cares, let him rot in the slammer or get the needle, won`t matter.


27 posted on 12/07/2005 9:48:11 PM PST by bybybill (GOD help us if the Rats win)
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To: msnimje

...I also wonder if they have looked at the crime scene photos of his victims...

Perfect. These actors are film pros. Maybe they might like to comment on the murder scene photographs - as art.


28 posted on 12/07/2005 9:48:33 PM PST by aligncare (Wasted my time...got my Journalism degree)
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To: SmithL
An argument for sparing a cold-blooded killer,

The writer is against the death penalty, some argument

29 posted on 12/07/2005 10:11:40 PM PST by GeronL (Leftism is the INSANE Cult of the Artificial)
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To: SmithL

Doesn't belittle me.


30 posted on 12/07/2005 10:21:22 PM PST by cubreporter (I trust Rush. He has done more for this country than anyone will ever know. He's A++)
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To: SmithL

If Tookie cannot admit his crime, then he should die. If Tookie has taken responsibility and feels remorse, then he should ASK to die.


31 posted on 12/07/2005 10:26:00 PM PST by Tax Government (Oppose the judicial insurrection. Contribute to FR.)
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To: Nateman
Somebody told him it had a 2" barrel.

Personally, I think they should give him a drug that makes him unconscious, and inflicts a great deal of pain, and then when he wakes up tell him a mistake was made on the dose and he has to do it all over again. Do that about 12 times in 12 days and then finally kill the POS. Even so it still would not be what he deserves.

32 posted on 12/07/2005 10:27:46 PM PST by calex59 (Seeing the light shouldn't make you blind...)
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To: Nateman




Oops, I don't know where that 2 inch barrel quote came from! Please disregard it!


33 posted on 12/07/2005 10:29:14 PM PST by calex59 (Seeing the light shouldn't make you blind...)
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To: Tax Government

Spoken like a man. I ditto that!!!


34 posted on 12/07/2005 10:42:46 PM PST by msf92497 (Was Republican...Now just a Conservative.)
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To: SmithL

I can post pictures of Tookie's victims but they are too gruesome for polite company


35 posted on 12/07/2005 10:57:07 PM PST by Leofl (I'm from Texas, we don't dial 9-11)
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To: calex59

I recommend bad acid and beatings.


36 posted on 12/07/2005 11:28:15 PM PST by Gordongekko909 (I know. Let's cut his WHOLE BODY off.)
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To: dagoofyfoot
biting my tongue, biting my tongue, don't want to get banned but red wine goes with .......arghuuuuuuuuu!
37 posted on 12/07/2005 11:30:56 PM PST by BruceysMom ("Scott Peterson is such an amateur!"-Michael Shiavo)
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To: SmithL

I have always thought justice should be swift and sure.
If a criminal wants to have an appeal, he should first under go all possible means to prove he did not do the crime by using all types of truth serums.
This would lower the amount of innocents in prison and might clear up other crimes.
This would also save the vast amount of money paid to lawyers who make a career out of filing endless appeals for these scum!


38 posted on 12/08/2005 1:16:01 AM PST by HuntsvilleTxVeteran (Giving power and money to Congress is like giving liquor and car keys to teenage boys. - P.J. O'Rour)
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To: SmithL
Brain-dead murderer loving liberal. I think the death penalty is essential precisely so considerations of popularity, fame or money are immaterial to the murderer's fate. Liberals should be celebrating Death Row as the ultimate exercise in egalitarianism. Rich or poor, famous or inconsequential, death is the common lot of all murderers. As for sparing Williams, give me a call when I discover he spared his victims also. He deserves no less than when he passed judgment upon them.

(Denny Crane: "I Don't Want To Socialize With A Pinko Liberal Democrat Commie.Say What You Like About Republicans. We Stick To Our Convictions. Even When We Know We're Dead Wrong.")

39 posted on 12/08/2005 1:42:24 AM PST by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives On In My Heart Forever)
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To: Chaguito
We need to speed up executions. And why not starve murderers to death? Liberals decreed it humane enough for Terri Schiavo. Letting them die with some agony would be a fitting punishment for their evil deeds. Terri deserved to live. Murderers deserve to die. None of that moral equivalence BS for me.

(Denny Crane: "I Don't Want To Socialize With A Pinko Liberal Democrat Commie.Say What You Like About Republicans. We Stick To Our Convictions. Even When We Know We're Dead Wrong.")

40 posted on 12/08/2005 1:47:01 AM PST by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives On In My Heart Forever)
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To: Nateman
Too bad its not possible to execute him four times. He snuffed out not just those four lives but snuffed out their blood line as well. In other words, all their possible progeny. There's a reason the world blood in Hebrew is expressed in the plural sense. Its not only your existence the murderer terminates through his conduct.

(Denny Crane: "I Don't Want To Socialize With A Pinko Liberal Democrat Commie.Say What You Like About Republicans. We Stick To Our Convictions. Even When We Know We're Dead Wrong.")

41 posted on 12/08/2005 1:50:09 AM PST by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives On In My Heart Forever)
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To: SmithL

I spent a little time browsing on tookie.com. This is what he regrets:

"I also didn't expect the Crips to end up ruining the lives of so many young people, especially young black men who have hurt other young black men. . . . So today I apologize to you all -- the children of America and South Africa -- who must cope every day with dangerous street gangs. I no longer participate in the so-called gangster lifestyle, and I deeply regret that I ever did.

As a contribution to the struggle to end child-on-child brutality and black-on-black brutality, I have written the Tookie Speaks Out Against Gang Violence children's book series."

There isn't a word of sympathy for his victims, or other innocent victims of gang crime. His sympathy is for the gang members. He regrets their -- and his own -- self-destruction -- that is all.

I think Tookie is still the same racist he was when he murdered whites and Asians in cold blood, laughed about their suffering, and stated that he wanted to kill all whites.

Put another way, his "redemption" is really just self-pity -- extended to those he views as being like himself.


42 posted on 12/08/2005 8:46:55 AM PST by lady lawyer
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To: SmithL
>> Hopefully, I only have another week to say that.

I think it should take more than a week. To wit: in the Terri Schiavo execution, we were solemnly assured that her death by dehydration was humane and painless. Which is just what we need for capital punishment.

It took thirteen days of dehydration to kill Terri. The judge would not permit anyone to put ice chips in her mouth to ease her suffering. His theory for this ruling is muddled, but now it's the legal precedent.

Somebody out there is always screaming about the cruelty of one sort of execution or another. But dehydration/starvation has the complete and glowing approval of liberal ideology and famous death spokesmen and the ACLU. It is, indeed, used every day in hospitals to dispose of inconvenient old folks.

The thing to do, then, is stop giving food and liquid to Tookie. That could take several weeks, but it's worth it, to be certain his execution is politically correct. And of course, no ice chips for Tookie.

43 posted on 12/11/2005 5:03:52 AM PST by T'wit (Liberals love to do everything mom and dad told them was naughty, underhanded, malicious or sick.)
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