11 April 2008

Sent to the members of the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty

Feel Free to Forward

Greetings Fellow Abolitionists,

First, a warm welcome to those who signed up after meeting NCADP Executive Director Diann Rust-Tierney at the Arizona Death Penalty Forum conference in Phoenix last week, those who heard me speak at the death penalty panel at American University on Friday, and those who have signed up in the past week on our web page.  I also want to welcome the more than 3,000 people new to this list who came with me from my former position at Citizens United for Alternatives to the Death Penalty.  In my final message to the CUADPUpdate list, I warned of this transition and invited people to tell me if they did not want to be added to NCADP's e-abolitionist list, and not one person said no!  And with that, here we go…


This past Sunday night my family hosted Andre Latallade in our home just east of Washington, DC.  Also known by his stage name, hip hop artist "Capital X" was about 150 miles along the way in his 1700+ mile walk from Trenton, NJ to Austin, TX, where he expects to arrive towards the end of May.  The purpose of this walk is to raise awareness about the death penalty and to bring more people into this movement.

On Monday, Capital X met with the staff at the offices of the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty in downtown Washington, DC.  NCADP board chairman Bill Pelke presented him with generous contributions from two other organizations Bill represents, Alaskans Against the Death Penalty and Journey of Hope …From Violence to Healing.  Bill met Capital X during a speaking tour in Italy last year and flew all the way from Alaska to be the road crew for a couple of days in support of this effort. 

Capital X is in Virginia as I write this and current plans take him through North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia in the coming weeks.  Anyone interested in supporting "X" can email him at  You can make a donation online at or send a check or money order to Voice of the Voiceless, Powermill Box 182, Pine Brook, NJ 07058.  Funds raised during the walk will go to victims' families and abolitionist groups.

The Journey of Hope …From Violence to Healing Blog has quite a bit about this, and you can view X's "Walk 4 Life" promotional clip and daily video blog documenting his journey at, a hip hop network that is covering his expedition. There you can also view his profile and online show, "From the Frontlines."  Recent video blogs include appearances by myself, murder victim family member Bill Pelke, death row mother Terri Steinberg, and death row survivor Shujaa Graham.


I walked with Capital X from the NCADP offices into Virginia, and we stopped to make this portrait of him with the Memorial Bridge and the Potomac River in the background, just before he crossed out of DC on his way to Texas.  Long-time NCADP members might  note that he is carrying Sam Reese Sheppards' walking stick, which Sam carried when he walked 1600 miles from Boston to New Orleans in  his 1995 "Walk for Alternatives to Violence."  Sam put that stick into the NCADP fund raising auction that year, and I bought it.  Capital X put a few more miles on The Stick this week in DC and Virginia....                                                        --abe


From DPIC:  In New Mexico, Judge and Prosecutor Agree:  No Funds Means No Death Penalty 



Stephen Rohde of Death Penalty Focus blogged on the Troy Anthony Davis case here, so please read about it and follow the TAKE ACTION NOW link.  Make your action even more effective by sending the on-line petition, but also send a note in the regular postal mail.  All the info you need is on that page.



Thanks to Steve Hall for the heads up on Tuesday's Senate Judiciary Committee Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Property Rights hearing on "The Adequacy of Representation in Capital Cases."  Click here to access streaming audio, written witness testimony, and member statements.

Witnesses included Michael Greco, Former President of the American Bar Association; Bryan Stevenson, Executive Director, Equal Justice Initiative;  The Honorable Carolyn Engel Temin, Senior Judge, Court of Common Pleas of the First Judicial District of Pennsylvania; and Donald Verrilli, Partner, Jenner & Block LLP



Please join me on Monday in Newark for a symposium on LEGISLATION, LITIGATION, REFLECTION AND REPEAL: The Legislative Abolition of the Death Penalty in NJ.  Governor Corzine is speaking and New Jerseyans for Alternatives to the Death Penalty will be honored.