January 2009 Issue 47

Articles in this Issue:

Extremists for the extension of justice

By: Marlene Martin

Our approach to activism in the Campaign to End the Death Penalty is two-pronged. We fight both around individual cases as well as make the general case for abolition. In this approach, there exists a built-in tension.

We want good lawyers to fight in the courtroom--to make the very best case they can that their client should win a new trail or not get the death penalty. But at the same time, we know that to leave the fight there is inadequate.We have to push forward and make public campaigns around cases if we are to continue to advance the cause of abolition. 

A setback for Rodney Reed

By: Lily Hughes

Days before the Christmas holiday, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals denied relief in the case of Texas death row prisoner Rodney Reed, leaving his family and supporters shocked and devastated.

Sandra Reed, Rodney's mother, decried the court's decision, saying, "A great injustice has been done today. I looked to the court to consider all the new developments. And with all these developments, how could they deny my son?"

Campaign to End the Death Penalty National Convention 2008

Working to end the death penalty


On November 8 and 9, the Campaign to End the Death Penalty held its eight annual convention in Chicago. More than 80 people from across the country turned out for a weekend packed with insightful discussions and moving testimonies.

At an evening meeting that drew a crowd of more than 100 from around Chicago, Mumia Abu-Jamal called in live from his prison cell in Pennsylvania and talked to the hushed crowd. "I'm overwhelmed," he said when he heard the crowd chant, "They say death row, we say hell no!"

National initiatives and resolution

By: Marlene Martin

Delegates at the convention voted in favor of the following:

SPEAKING TOUR: Convention delegates voted in favor of having a national speaking tour starting in the fall of 2009 to run through 2010, theme to be decided. Please email any ideas to marlene@nodeathpenalty.org

WEB SITE: Delegates voted in favor of forming a committee to enhance our Web site. Those on the committee are Derrel Myers, Laura Brady, Lee Wengraf and Liliana Segura. If others would like to join the committee, please contact Derrel Myers at dmyers@lmi.net.

Help us reach our goal of 150 monthly sustainers

By: Rebecca Kurti

One hundred and two of you are members of the CEDP's monthly sustainers program. This means that every month you've designated a certain charge to your credit card to go the CEDP. And each month, we use those funds to keep the CEDP going: our phone, our rent, our one staffer, our mailings.

At our convention this year, delegates voted that we go should on a campaign to raise our monthly sustainers to 150 by our November convention in 2009. That means we need to grow by 48 new members. You can help us reach that goal by signing up if you're not already a member.

Highlights Of The Struggle

Reports From Campaign Chapters Around The Country

Austin, Texas
By Laura Brady

2009 promises to be a stirring and eventful time for the anti-death penalty struggle in Texas. The Austin CEDP chapter continues to build the movement toward abolition with a focus on the innocence of Rodney Reed, and that of Robert Springsteen and Michael Scott, the Yogurt Shop defendants.

Keeping it Real

A special holiday thanks

By: pardoned Illinois death row prisoner Stanley Howard

The holiday season is upon us again and unfortunately, over two million of us will be spending it on death rows and in prisons around the country. Life behind bars is spent mostly like Ground Hog Day. Each day is very similar to the previous day.

Voices from the Inside

Prisoners speak out

By: Ellis L. Wood, Jerrold Johnson-El, Rob Will

No one should receive this sentence  

First and foremost, I want to say thank you to everyone at the Campaign to End the Death Penalty. On August 29, 2008, I received a letter from the CEDP requesting that I give them my input on what it's like to have a sentence of Life Without Parole. 

Howard Zinn at National Convention

Tickets are no longer available online. A limited number of the tickets will be available for sale at the door.

Howard Zinn in a conversation with Dave Zirin The Power of the People

Saturday, November 7, 7pm
  University of Chicago | Mandel Hall*