portrait of troy davis, 2011
artist, alex schaefer
courtesy of the grand bastard
Jason Ewart, a Washington attorney who spent seven years handling Davis' appeals, fought back tears as he recalled sitting in the second row of witnesses at the execution and watching the life drain from Davis' eyes.
Ewart recalled many long phone conversations with Davis, never shorter than an hour, in which the men spent twice as much time talking about their families as they did legal strategy. Ewart said his own grandmother had just died, and he pictured her and Davis together at "heaven orientation."
"She would say, 'Jesus died on the cross not because he was guilty, but because we all were,'" Ewart said.Media Witness Jon Lewis describes here Mr. Davis' formal last words at an execution community activists have decried as legal lynching or state sanctioned murder.
According to the AP story, many notable civil rights leaders and activists attended. Rev. Raphael Warnock of Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta recalled to the reporters how Emmett Til's mother insisted on an open casket, hoping people could see the injustice of Jim Crow. In a similar spirit, Troy Davis' family hopes that opening the funeral to supporters, Saturday October 1st, will help people see the injustice of the death penalty.
Courtesy of The Grio
Former President Jimmy Carter, among the many prominent voices calling for clemency, wrote, "If one of our fellow citizens can be executed with so much doubt surrounding his guilt, then the death penalty system in our country is unjust and outdated. We hope this tragedy will spur us as a nation toward the total rejection of capital punishment."