Feminists have every reason to be suspicious of capital punishment. Death penalty laws in the U.S. were enacted by legislatures dominated by men; death sentences are sought by prosecutors who are predominately men; juries that condemn defendants to death have historically been mostly male; and judges who sentence defendants to death are overwhelmingly male.
The Trump administration executed thirteen men and women within six months—the most consecutive civilian executions by the federal government or any state in the 244-year history of the United States.
With two swift actions last week, the Supreme Court proved it is alarmingly disinterested in protecting women’s lives.
Early Wednesday morning, the U.S. government executed Lisa Montgomery after a flurry of legal efforts failed to outlast a Trump administration that was determined to put a lifelong victim of torture and severe mental illness to death.
Here, find an investigation of Lisa’s life, from a childhood of pain to motherhood behind bars—the story of a woman failed by every layer of our society, including, on the last night of her life, the United States Supreme Court.
As 2020 draws to a close, Ms. is looking forwards towards the new year (and new administration!), and thinking about the most vital issues for feminists to be aware of — because there’s so much more work to be done.
With this in mind, we talked to some of our favorite feminists about their top priorities for issues the country is facing from the environment to reproductive rights to voting, and what changes they’re hoping for 2021.
Lisa Montgomery, the only woman on federal death row, was scheduled to be executed on January 12—until a federal court ruled on December 24 that her execution date violated federal regulations establishing the procedures for carrying out the death penalty, a ruling that may save her life.
Lisa Montgomery is the only woman currently on federal death row. The accelerated timeline of Montgomery’s case, and the Justice Department’s determination to proceed despite an election loss and her lawyers’ incapacity due to COVID-19, is an example of the dangerous consequences of its misplaced priorities.