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America Is Stuck With the Death Penalty for (At Least) a Generation

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With Justice Anthony Kennedy's retirement, the national fight to abolish capital punishment will have to go local.
When the Supreme Court revived capital punishment in 1976, just four years after de facto abolishing it, the justices effectively took ownership of the American death penalty and all its outcomes. They have spent the decades since then setting its legal and constitutional parameters, supervising its general implementation, sanctioning its use in specific cases, and brushing aside concerns about its many flaws.
That unusual role in the American legal system is about to change. With Justice Anthony Kennedy’s retirement from the court this summer, the Supreme Court will lose a heterodox jurist whose willingness to cross ideological divides made him the deciding factor in many legal battles. In cases involving the Eighth Amendment’s prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment, his judgment often meant the difference between life and death for hundreds of death-row pr…

Indonesia: Gay couple publicly whipped after vigilante mob drags them out of beauty salon

Gay men flogged, Indonesia
Two Indonesian gay men were caned in public last week despite the government’s pledge that such barbaric punishment would not be continued. 

The men were whipped 80 times each with a rattan cane as onlookers hurled abuse and insults.

15 people were caned outside of a mosque in the country’s conservative Aceh province for offenses like drinking or selling alcohol and showing affection in public. It is the only region in Indonesia that imposes Islamic sharia law.

The unidentified couple were pulled out of a beauty salon earlier this year by a vigilante mob who accused them of having sex. 

The country has been cracking down on gay men and flogging or humiliating them with the government’s permission.

Police in Jakarta arrested over 140 men at a sauna popular with gay men in May 2017 and another 51 men in a raid of a different sauna in October. 

Police said the men were detained on suspicion of violating Indonesia’s pornography law.

In May 2017, two gay men were publicly caned after vigilantes in their neighborhood barged into the apartment where they were staying and filmed them naked in bed. 

Sharia law Indonesia
The video not only led to their conviction and sentencing to 85 lashes, it was reportedly shared broadly on social media.

After international outcry, Aceh officials said this year they would stop public whippings but continue the punishment behind prison walls.

In February of this year, police raided a hair salon that was frequented by trans woman, shaved their heads, and forced them to run “until their male voices came out.”

On March 12, vigilantes raided a hair salon in Aceh’s capital, Banda Aceh, where a man and a transgender woman were arrested. 

The vigilantes said they found condoms in the salon and that the trans woman was carrying money, evidence that the salon was being used for prostitution. They called police and the two were arrested.

On March 29, vigilantes broke into a student’s apartment and called the police. Police arrested the student and another boy he was accused of having sex with, and seized their cell phones, condoms, and a mattress as evidence that they had had sex.

Source: lgbtqnation.com, Bill Browning, July 13, 2018


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"One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed,
but by the punishments that the good have inflicted." -- Oscar Wilde

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