While we are feeling superior to the Mideast theocrats, it is good to remember that men feared witches and burned women. -gwc
Sentencing Law and Policy: Reviewing Massachusetts' "long and tortured history" with the death penalty:
by the Associated Press
"Massachusetts hasn't executed anyone since 1947, but during most of its history it allowed capital punishment for crimes ranging from murder to witchcraft. Jurors weighing whether Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev should die under the federal death penalty statute or spend the rest of his life behind bars are the latest to do so in a state with a long and tortured history with execution:
Using death as a punishment was common in the state's earliest days. In one notable case, Mary Dyer, was put to death in Boston in 1660 after she was banned by the Puritan leaders of the Massachusetts Bay Colony for being a Quaker. Dyer returned several times in defiance of anti-Quaker laws and was eventually hanged. A statue of Dyer sits in front of the Statehouse as a caution against religious intolerance. Capital punishment reached a new fervor a few decades later, when 19 people were hanged and one person crushed to death during the 1692 Salem witch trials.
Perhaps the most infamous Massachusetts death penalty case of the 20th century focused on Italian immigrants and committed anarchists Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti. The two were arrested several weeks after a payroll clerk and a security guard were shot and killed during an armed robbery at a Braintree shoe factory. The 1921 trial drew international attention. After they were convicted and sentenced to die in the electric chair, political dissidents, unionists, Italian immigrants and other supporters ... demonstrated across the United States and Europe arguing the two were targeted for their political beliefs and immigrant status. They were executed in 1927. The case still remains contentious...."
'via Blog this'