Saturday, November 24, 2007
The Lena Baker Story
Tichina Arnold ("Everybody Hates Chris", "Martin") will be starring in an independent film entitled "The Lena Baker Story" about the first and only Georgia woman to be sent to the electric chair. First of all I am totally against the death penalty under any circumstances. The main reason is that it is a barbaric and outdated way to deal with crime. Secondly, it does not deter crime because those who commit crime do not think they will get caught and many people actually do not get caught.
Another problem with the death penalty is that some people on death row are not guilty, which brings me back to Ms. Baker. It seems that this woman was used for sex (raped) by her employer regularly and when she finally got the nerve to fight back she ended up killing him which led to her being convicted (by an all white, male jury) and sentenced to death. Although she proclaimed her innocence, stating that she acted in self-defense, she was executed. Sixty years after her execution she was pardoned by the Governor of Georgia.
Although justice came far too late for this mother of three, her story can help to illustrate what is wrong with the United States justice system. The same problems that existed sixty years ago still persist today. People of color continue to bear the brunt of an justice system that often times simply does not work . Some people say that the time has come to move on and not focus on the past. I beg to differ, “Those who are unaware of history are destined to repeat it" - George Santayana. I welcome any comments you might have.