Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Lots of News Today About Murder 

What an upper, right? This morning, the Supreme Court ruled in a 5-4 decision that the death penalty is unconstitutional for criminals who are minors when they commit the crime. For those of us who are opposed to the death penalty, this was a good day. A former death row defense attorney, now a seminarian classmate of mine, gave a moving testimonial at lunch today. He stood up and said with an heartfelt tremor in his voice that for him, and for the family of one of his former clients who was 17, the decision was an answer to prayer. At Seabury, we pray for all persons who are about to be executed the week of their execution date, as well as for their families, the families of their victims, and the people of the state in whose name they will be killed. (When the death certificate is filled out for a person executed by the state, the cause of death is listed as homicide.) For us too, then, this was a step forward.

In Chicago tonight, a District court judge returned home from work to find her husband and mother both slain; they were shot to death in their home. Apparently, the judge was once targeted for assassination by a white supremacist group, but the police have yet to establish a connection to this dual homicide. While this is a terrible crime, and certainly frightening for civil servants everywhere, I do not agree with Chicago Chief of Detectives when he says that they're going to work extra hard on this one. They should work extra hard on all murder cases, regardless of the who the victims or victim's family's are. What does this kind of statement say to the family of a young man murdered randomly last year in Ravenswood, shot at point blank range for apparently no reason? That his death isn't as important? That because he wasn't a judge or other public figure, the police don't have to work as hard? I hope not. Reality, apparently, begs to differ.

To end on a lighter note, my hometown girl (she's from Fort Myers) Vonzell Solomon performed well tonight on American Idol. I think she has the talent to go far in this competition, but she is up against some wonderful singers and marvelously fun performers. I wish her my best! Bring it home to FM Baby-V!



I agree that police should work hard on all murder cases... but in this case, if their deaths were related to the Hale conviction, quick and accurate work could save the lives of other people in the Lefkow family, which simply isn't true in most cases. But, as you say, in any case, violence is simply a terrible and sad thing.

By Blogger Susie, at 11:54 PM  

I, too, think police should work hard on all murder cases. I have a painful, personal reason for this conviction that I won't share here. However, judges must be made to feel safe and protected. Justice for that young man you mentioned would never come if judges were too intimidated to do thier jobs. We all need them to ensure that Judge Lefkow and all her co-workers feel safe enough to do the brave work they do.

By Anonymous Hope, at 8:43 PM  

Hey there Hope! And welcome to the commenting section of my blog!

Thank you both for your comments on this truly heartrending incident. I think both of you make very good points that serve as considered additions to what I am saying. It is my prayer that all the other members of the Lefkow family or whoever else might be targeted will be kept safe under the sheltering wings of the Lord God and that by quick, accurate, and righteous justice the person(s) responsible may be brought before the very institution they seek to undermine. Judges do need to be made to feel safe, as do we all. Again, thanks for your additions.


By Blogger Ryan, at 11:03 PM  

Your sentiments about one murder becoming a bigger concern to the police is troubling to me, too. Not to take anything away from the horrors of the Lefkow murders, I would like to point out that another Chicagoan, the tenor from the Lyric Opera, was killed right about the same time as the other crimes took place. This fellow was a colleague of my partner, Mark. It's all very disturbing. The Lefkow murders overshadowed everything. I pray justice is done and all the families involved can gain some peace in the end.


By Blogger La Sequencia, at 4:46 PM  

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