Yesterday the Supreme Court heard oral argument in McWilliams v. Dunn, a capital punishment case. The case was argued for petitioner by Steven Bright, the director of the Southern Center for Human Rights. Bright recently announced that he will retire as the Director after more than thirty years of advocacy against the death penalty.
I took a class from Steve Bright when I was a law student, and he is a remarkable man. While I do not believe that the death penalty is unconstitutional under all circumstances, his work and example did convince me that many capital sentences are unconstitutional and that the use of that sentence should be reserved for a handful of cases (far fewer than what is done now). So I just wanted to take a moment to salute him and wish him well in whatever he does next.