Politics Magazine

Crime Stories

Posted on the 22 September 2011 by Erictheblue

In its Metro section today, the Star Tribune runs the following blurb:

Aug. 29 A 41-year-old man was arrested for stealing a comforter from J.C. Penney at Southdale Center, Edina.  An hour later, he was arrested for stealing merchandise from Cub Foods across the street.

This is supposed to be a funny story about a hapless criminal that readers can laugh about in a self-congratulatory manner.  It would work better for that purpose if the fellow had stolen a pack of condoms from a Walgreens and then, an hour later, a lighter and some pastries from SuperAmerica. 

On the crime beat, different order of magnitude, the state of Georgia is gearing up to execute a man, Troy Davis, despite the fact that the evidence of police misconduct is considerably more compelling than the evidence of Davis's guilt.  The prospect of an innocent person being executed is horrifying.  The only way to prevent it is to abolish capital punishment.  For if capital punishment is not abolished, and justice continues to be administered by fallible human beings, then, inevitably, innocent people will be put to death. 

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