Did Texas execute an innocent man? Film revisits a haunting question.

Texans will have an opportunity to revisit a question that should haunt anyone who believes in the integrity of our criminal justice system: Did our state execute an innocent man? 
The new film “Trial by Fire” tells the true story of Cameron Todd Willingham, who was sentenced to death for setting a fire to his home in Corsicana that killed his three young daughters in 1991. The film is based on an investigative story by David Grann that appeared in the New Yorker in 2009, five years after Willingham was executed over his vociferous protestations of innocence.
In my experience of serving 8 years on the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals and 4 years as a state district judge in Travis County, the Willingham case stands out to me for many of the same reasons it stood out to filmmaker Edward Zwick, who calls it a veritable catalogue of everything that’s wrong with the criminal justice system and, especially, the death penalty. False testimony, junk science, a jailhouse informant, and ineffe…

Botswana Decriminalizes Homosexuality

Gay Africa
The high court in Botswana rejected laws that could land couples in jail for up to seven years for being in a same-sex relationship.

BBC News reports that the court said it was unconstitutional to punish people for their sexual preference.

Judge Elburu added that laws banning gay sex are “discriminatory” and that, “Sexual orientation is not a fashion statement. It is an important attribute of one’s personality.”

The ruling marks a significant step for gay rights in Africa as same-sex relations can be punishable by death in northern Nigeria, Sudan, Somalia, and Mauritania. 

Tanzanian laws also punish homosexuality with a life sentence.

Homosexuality in Botswana was outlawed under the country’s penal code in 1965. 

Angola, Mozambique, and Seychelles are some of the countries that have changed their laws on same-sex partnerships, allowing for freedom of rights.

Source: thehollywoodunlocked.com, Alyssa Brook, June 11, 2019

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