Bill to Repeal Death Penalty Passes MD Senate Committee
Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley's bill to abolish the death penalty has passed in the state Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee on a 6 to 5 vote. The bill will now move to the Senate floor, where it is expected to pass. Twenty-six of the Maryland Senate's forty-seven members have pledged to support the bill.
Senator Brian E. Frosh (D-Montgomery), who acted as the chairman of the panel, said, "Human beings make mistakes. No matter how hard we try . . . to find a way to beat all the error out of our system, I don't believe that's possible."
Thirty-two U.S. jurisdictions have refrained from using capital punishment in the last five years according to a 2011 study by the Death Penalty Information Center. In fact, most executions occur in southern states. Texas, for example, is credited with over one third of all executions nationally. If the state were to pass the bill, Maryland would join seventeen other states which have outlawed capital punishment. Currently, five prisoners are on death row in Maryland.
Media Resources: Delmarva Now 2/22/2013; Think Progress 2/22/2013; Washington Post 2/22/2013
12/11/2013 Human Rights Day Celebrated Around The World - Yesterday marked International Human Rights Day, a day to celebrate human rights advances and to assess the challenges that lie ahead in protecting them.
"The fundamentals for protecting and promoting human rights are largely in place: these include a strong and growing body of international human rights law and standards, as well as institutions to interpret the laws, monitor compliance and apply them to new and emerging human rights issues," said United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay in a statement. . . .
12/11/2013 UConn Under Federal Investigation For Mishandling Sexual Assault Cases - The US Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights informed the University of Connecticut on Monday that it will investigate the school for allegedly mishandling sexual assault cases and violating Title IX, the federal law that requires colleges to eliminate gender-based discrimination.
The investigation was sparked after seven women filed a formal complaint in October alleging that UConn had failed to protect them from sexual assault and exposed them to a sexually hostile environment.One woman says her attacker was expelled from campus but later readmitted without her knowledge. . . .
12/11/2013 Massachusetts Democrat Katherine Clark Wins Congressional Seat - Democrat Katherine Clark will become the fifth woman to represent Massachusetts in the US House Tuesday, after easily defeating three opponents in a special election.
"Six years ago, there wasn't a single woman representing Massachusetts in Congress," said Niki Tsongas, the only other woman representing Massachusetts in the House. . . .