No matter what happens, we can count on the hilariously named "Death Penalty Information Center" to come up with some story telling us that the "death penalty is dying." This happens so often that I don't keep track of it anymore. It's usually based on some survey it has paid for, or on a press release from an allied group like Amnesty International, or, of late, on the assertion that the number of executions in any given year was less than the year before.
They'll have to use something else this year. With tonight's execution of Manuel Pardo for not fewer than nine murders, the number of persons executed this year (43) equals the number executed last year. There might be one or two more executions to come this year, but I don't know that. Even if one is scheduled, it can always be postponed based on the killer's sudden discovery that he has the IQ of a carrot.
The DPIC's own figures put the lie to the claim that, over the last few years, executions are fading away. The 43 executions this year are equal to the 43 last year, slightly less than the 46 in 2010 and 52 in 2009, but slightly more than the 37 in 2008 and the 42 in 2007. If anything is dying -- or at least badly crippled -- it's not the death penalty, but the opposition to it.