The Sporadic Beaver

Take a Sad Song and Make it Better

September 22, 2011

Tags: Troy Davis, capital punishment, Nellie McKay


Song for Troy Davis by Nellie McKay

If you've read Beaver Street (or Nowhere Man for that matter) then you know that my interests range far beyond pornography and rock 'n' roll, into such areas as the rule of law and government corruption. And though I don't know enough about the Troy Davis case to render an informed opinion about his guilt or innocence, I do know enough about capital punishment to say with assurance that it's a barbaric, racist, and deeply flawed practice, and that the United States is the only country in the industrialized Western World that executes prisoners.

Last night, the state of Georgia, in the name of the American people, executed Troy Davis by lethal injection for a murder he was found guilty of committing 22 years ago. I won’t go into any detail here about the hundreds of thousands of people, including many staunchly in favor of capital punishment, who had grave doubts about Davis’s guilt. You can read about it on the Internet if you want to know more.

But I did watch the drama play out on TV, as the Supreme Court considered, then denied, a last-minute stay of execution. Then I heard the news that Davis went to his death proclaiming his innocence.

It sickened me and made me ashamed to be an American.

That’s all I have to say for now about this case in particular, or capital punishment in general. But I would like to share with you the above video, “Song for Troy Davis,” by Nellie McKay.