Here are some of the latest notable items from the Jazz Blogosphere:
Death penalty’s unlikely opponents
By Eliott C. McLaughlin, CNN
(CNN) — Charisse Coleman has no real compassion for the man who walked into the Thrifty Liquor Store in Shreveport, Louisiana, in 1995 and put three bullets in her brother, Russell.
But she doesn’t want Bobby Lee Hampton — one of more than seven dozen killers on Louisiana’s death row — executed, either.
“My opposition to the death penalty has nothing to do with Bobby Lee Hampton,” Coleman said. “He’s a bad dude. He’s never going to be a good dude. If I got a call that said Bobby Lee Hampton dropped dead in his cell last night, I don’t think it would create a ripple in my pond.”
She added, though, “I will be goddamned if I will let Bobby Lee Hampton make me a victim, too, by taking me down that road of bitterness and revenge.”
Coleman, 50, is among the most unlikely opponents of the death penalty, people who lost loved ones to unspeakable violence yet believe executing the killer will do nothing for family members or society.
Their stance is backed by groups like Murder Victims’ Families for Reconciliation and Murder Victims’ Families for Human Rights, and their reasons aren’t as religious or political as one might think. Some feel so strongly they’ve spoken against the death penalty even when it wasn’t an option in their loved one’s case.
There’s no denying most Americans are pro-death penalty. They have been since 1967, according to Gallup, which regularly conducts polls asking whether Americans are for or against capital punishment in murder cases. Support reached as high as 80% in 1994 and declined to 61% in a poll this month — the lowest since 1972, the year the Supreme Court temporarily halted executions.
Add a little nuance, though, and sentiments shift. When asked to choose between the death penalty and life in prison, 50% of respondents in a recent CNN/ORC International Poll said they favored a life sentence, compared to 48% who preferred the death penalty.
For fans of rock and soul music there’s a really cool website that you should check out.
It’s called, Rock ‘n Soul Alley.
I learned about it this week.
It’s an online community where people can talk about their favorite artists, debate their favorite albums, and just share their love of the music with others.
There are articles published and blog posts. Also, interactive lists displaying the greatest rock and soul artists of all time as well as songs and albums from the last 60 years.
And much more.
I like rock music but I’m a bigger Soul fan. Regardless, Rock ‘n Soul Alley is a great place for lovers of rock and soul music.
No mercy at all from the ownership class not even in these terrible economic times. I don’t want to sound surprised though, because I’m not.
Along with The Strand, the St. Mark’s Bookshop is my other favorite book store in New York.
Small in size but a great place for book lovers. I especially love their political section. A fantastic varied selection of books and their magazine section too. Hard to find political and literary magazines in addition to all other magazines that are in stock.
I really hope the store survives.
It would be a huge loss to NYC.
BY Rich Schapiro
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
St. Mark’s Bookshop not granted rent cut from landlord, faces closure despite community’s support
The struggling St. Mark’s Bookshop was dealt more bad news Tuesday when its owners were told they will not receive a rent reduction.
Owners Bob Contant and Terry McCoy found out their bid for a $5,000 rent cut was nixed by landlord Cooper Union in a meeting with T.C. Westcott, a vice president for finance and administration at the arts and engineering school.
“They don’t feel they can do anything in terms of the rent,” McCoy said. “She started out by telling us that Cooper is really losing a lot of money.”
Westcott told them Cooper Union is “broke,” McCoy said.
She did offer Contant and McCoy a deal: They can defer a month’s rent and pay it back over time.
“We are healthy only to the extent that our ideas are humane.”
– Kurt Vonnegut