Here’s the thing, Troy Anthony Davis wasn’t a particularly good man. He was a high school drop out who - as a child - earned the nickname ‘RAH’, short for “Rough As Hell’. Even after getting his GED, he never really held a steady job. He had prior run ins with the law, including a gun charge, for which he served probation. By all accounts, Troy Davis was the dude who could’ve been something, but he just wasn’t.
Four days ago, when I first heard about the last ditch efforts to save the convicted cop killer on death row, my stomach began to turn. I looked into the case myself, reading all I could find, watching various news coverage from around the country and I came to but one conclusion: we should not be killing this man.
Here’s what we know: Troy Davis was involved in three separate incidents that summer night back in 1989. Either he or his buddy shot a passing motorist in the face, they were involved in the beating of a homeless man over a beer and Davis was present when off-duty officer Marc MacPhail was fatally shot while trying to break-up the attack on the homeless man.
Troy Davis was not a good man. But this is not what this case was about.
The Troy Davis case raises two recurring questions about this country and our legal and political systems: Who are we to play God? Who aren’t we, that we don’t have a voice?
Last night, as confirmation came that the US Supreme Court would not stop the execution, although it appears there was more than enough reasonable doubt, something began to change for me. I don’t know, but somehow I just got it.
We are all Troy Davis. And we are all responsible for what’s happening to us.
Earlier this year I watched as the people of Egypt threatened to burn down the capitol, demanding change. Shortly after, London was in an uproar over an unjust killing. Meanwhile we - myself included - took to twitter. There is a laziness in our protest. One that allows us to sleep at night, knowing we did the last minute bare minimum.
I don’t want to do the bare minimum anymore. 11:08pm on Wednesday, September 21, 2011 showed me that the bare minimum isn’t enough.
- Posted 1 year ago
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By Paulo Coelho