Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Opinion | Using the Tree of Life synagogue shooting to advance an agenda

Opinion | Using the Tree of Life synagogue shooting to advance an agenda


In their June 29 Thursday Opinion commentary, “He murdered 11 worshipers. But the death penalty isn’t the answer.,” Yasmin Cader and Jeffery Robinson posited that because the jury in the Tree of Life synagogue killings has no Black or Latino jurors, and is nearly all White, it inherently cannot fairly render judgment or represent the “conscience of the community” on the proper punishment — whether life in prison without parole or the death penalty.

The authors’ subtle implication is that if there were a Black or Latino person on the jury — which must be unanimous if the death penalty is to be imposed — such that a juror would, because he or she is Black or Latino, surely vote against such a sentence. In so doing, the authors, who know little about the conscience of my community, sadly perpetuate not only a stereotype of Blacks and Latinos but also a view that is inherently racist.

Jonathan M. Schmerling, Pittsburgh

In their June 29 Thursday Opinion commentary, Yasmin Cader and Jeffery Robinson wrote against the pursuit of the death penalty for a man who murdered 11 Jewish worshipers in a Pittsburgh synagogue. Jewish tradition has always carried an aversion to the death penalty, so the headline was unsurprising. It was truly baffling to find no mention of Jewish values in their argument. The writers instead chose to argue that the death penalty is inherently racist.

It takes real chutzpah to claim the prosecution’s pursuit of the death penalty for a White man who murdered Jews is an affront to Black people. Rather than use the Jews of Pittsburgh as pawns in a tangential ethical argument, these writers could have connected with the victims’ community and discovered a stronger and clearer moral argument in support of their claim.

Daniel Goldberg, Sterling



Source link