Sunday, 3 June 2007

Death Penalty Moratorium - Letter to Governor Crist

The League of Women Voters of Florida

540 Beverly Court, Tallahassee, FL 32301-2506

Voice: 850/224-2545 • Fax: 850/222-4485 • E-mail:

May 28, 2007

The Honorable Charlie Crist, Governor

The Capitol400 S. Monroe St.

Tallahassee, FL 32399-0001

Dear Governor Crist:

Subject: Death Penalty Moratorium

The League of Women Voters of Florida was greatly heartened when Florida followed the lead of other states in declaring a moratorium on the death penalty.

We believe, as do many in the developed world, that the death penalty is a violation of human rights, and our state should not participate in this process.

The Florida moratorium was primarily adopted due to reports that the methods used to execute the prisoners are not humane and that individuals actually suffer during the ordeal. Other facts, however, should be considered concerning the overall efficacy of capital punishment in Florida: First, there exists a possibility that the person sentenced to death is innocent.

Too often, those executed are from poor families, under-educated, or from a minority group. In addition, studies have shown that states without the death penalty have murder rates as low or lower than states with the death penalty.

Furthermore, other studies have shown that the death penalty does not deter criminal behavior.

Finally, studies have shown that the cost to the state for a prisoner sentenced to life imprisonment is less than the cost of a prisoner sentenced to death.

We respectfully request that you as Governor declare a permanent moratorium and make use of other sentencing methods to ensure public safety.


Dianne Wheatley-Giliotti,President

1 comment:

Gaetano said...

Have already signed the Appeal:
Nobel Prize Laureates: Shirin Ebadi (Peace), Dario Fo (Literature), Mairead Corrigan Maguire (Peace), Sir Harold W. Kroto (Chemistry), Erwin Neher (Medicine), Richard J. Roberts (Medicine), Jens C. Skou (Chemistry), Betty Williams (Peace), Peter Agre (Chemistry), Paul Nurse (Physiology), John Walker (Chemistry), Richard Ernst (Chemistry), Val Fitch (Physics), Jean-Marie Lehn (Chemistry), Roald Hoffmann (Chemistry).


At midnight on April 16, Marco Pannella's non-violent initiative (that started on March 21) turned into an indefinite hunger strike. Sergio D'Elia, Valter Vecellio, Guido Biancardi, Lucio Bertè and Claudia Sterzi are also joining the fight in such an important phase. Our goal is to prevent the universal moratorium on the death penalty from being postponed to next year, as has happened for the past 13 years.
This fight is absolutely necessary and very urgent, as the moratorium is on the verge of being jeopardised, even abandoned. The moratorium is an objective very dear to the Radicals, especially Hands Off Cain and the Transnational Radical Party. The moratorium was initially embraced by the Italian Parliament. Later, a solemn commitment was made by the Italian Government on January 2, 2007, which was then supported by the European Parliament as well, and with an extraordinary majority.
Parliaments, Governments and a strong popular opinion were all moved into action by the "scandalous" execution of Saddam Hussein. The urgent and immediate goal: ensuring the resolution for the universal moratorium is presented to the current General Assembly, despite new international events that might in fact jeopardise it.
This is what is being discussed on a daily basis. Errors and delays have certainly taken place but it is still possible that they can be overcome and the moratorium will finally be achieved.
The alternative to our non-violent initiative is to accept yet another indefinite postponement, or a betrayal such as the one we received in 1999. We were recently reminded of this episode by Francesco Paolo Fulci, the influential Italian Ambassador to the UN at the time. The UN was given the order "from Brussels" to withdraw the resolution for the moratorium, a resolution that had already been submitted and had the certainty of being approved.
As people who believe in non-violent means, we have specific responsibilities and we will help our Government to reach the goal set by the Parliament, and later embraced by the Government itself. We are incited to act by the hope and the certainty that non-violence is the most effective tool to support the Government to fulfil the commitments it has made.


We the undersigned: Aware since 1994, and acknowledging the leadership of the Italian Governments and the Italian Pro-Moratorium Movement in favor of the proclamation for a Universal Moratorium on the Death Penalty at the United Nations, believe that, after years of postponements and requests for the unnecessary nor needed consensus of the European Union as such, the time to act at UN Headquarters has finally arrived.
We therefore appeal to Italy's President of the Council of Ministers Romano Prodi in observance with the decisions of the Italian Parliament and following the invitations and support of the European Parliament along with a group of favorable countries covering all continents, to table in the coming hours, a resolution based on the Political Declaration presented last December and signed by 93 countries on a Universal Moratorium on the Death Penalty in order to put it to a vote before the end of the current session (61st) of the UN General Assembly.

MORATORIUM ON CAPITAL EXECUTIONS, NOW!To sign the appeal to the Italian Government, send a fax to +3906 68805396; or an email with the subject: I SIGN to:

Name and Surname...........................