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Goodbye Gov Davis:Execution of Stephen Wayne Anderson

by The "A" Train Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2002 at 8:18 AM

The Good-bye Democratic Gov Gray Davis train filled up its anti-death penalty car on January 29, 2002, with the execution shortly after midnight of Stephen Wayne Anderson, another poor worker murdered with the anti-workingclass terror weapon, the death penalty, by the capitalist class for the benefit of the careers of their lackeys, such as one-term California Governor Gray Davis.

The Good-bye Democratic Gov Gray Davis train filled up its anti-death penalty car on January 29, 2002, with the execution shortly after midnight of Stephen Wayne Anderson, another poor worker murdered with the anti-workingclass terror weapon, the death penalty, by the capitalist class for the benefit of the careers of their lackeys, such as one-term California Governor Gray Davis.

Over 500 opponents of the death penalty were present at a vigil outside the gates of San Quentin prison in Marin County, where the temperature was freezing at 32 degrees F, while the snow level in the entire San Francisco Bay Area of which Marin County is a part was down to 500 feet, with lots of snow-capped hills in the Bay Area and snow falling in Petaluma, closing the schools for a snow day.

Europe has abolished the death penalty and in other industrialized countries, it is rarely used, thus making the United States in effect the only industrialized country to promote the death penalty, demonstrating how backward, barbaric and anti-workingclass the US capitalist class is and how weak US labor is. The death penalty in the United States is also a racist weapon, used disproportionately against people of color. Anderson happened to have been white, but he was certainly workingclass and had survived a miserable childhood filled with beatings by an alcoholic father and insufficient care by a mentally ill mother. He managed to rehabilitate himself in prison and became a noted writer and artist. The family of the victim opposed the death penalty, but despite the lies of the prosecution who claimed to be acting in the interests of the family, it is not the victim or the victim's family that is the concern of the state, but the careers of the capitalist politicians and the oppression of the workingclass. In a society that has nothing to offer but war and poverty, and promotes punishment instead of rehabilitation, the death penalty is part of the arsenal of terror to keep the workingclass in line while the rich get richer at our expense.

For more information on the history and facts on the death penalty and the actions of the abolitionists, see the websites of:

Death Penalty Focus at,

National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty at,

Campaign to End the Death Penalty at, The National Lawyers Guild Anti-Death Penalty Committee at,

The American Civil Liberties Union's Anti-Death Penalty Campaign at,

The Death Penalty Moratorium Campaign at and

Amnesty International at and

Please also read the information on Ed Rendell, the current chair of the national Democratic Party, who was the district attorney who framed Mumia Abu-Jamal, the world-renowned journalist who sits on Pennsylvania's death row falsely accused of killing a cop while the person who committed the murder, Arnold Beverly, has confessed but is free. The information on Ed Rendell is at

To all lawyers reading this: Regardless of the type of law you practice, the existence of the death penalty is a ringing indictment of your profession and has everything to do with you as a lawyer, taxpayer and voter. Thus, it is mandatory that you actively oppose the death penalty.

The tide has turned in the United States against the death penalty, with a Republican governor in Illinois starting the call for moratorium, and that call has spread nationwide. Illinois has a stronger labor movement than does California, although labor is fighting back in California. California has yet to have the death penalty moratorium implemented, but we will when we put an end to the horrifying and utterly reactionary regime of the worst governor in California's history on November 5, 2002, that of Democratic Governor Gray Davis. The Republican Party is also a death penalty party so please do not vote for it either. The Green Party is an anti-death penalty party and you may find a socialist as a write-in candidate. You could also skip the governor's position. Gray Davis is losing in the polls and with a declining economy, his position has nowhere to go but down.

Whatever you do, PLEASE VOTE YOUR CONSCIENCE. Stop playing the reactionary, deadly "lesser evil" game in which you end up with horrifying dictators like Gray Davis. Quite frankly, that game is over. If you vote for a death penalty candidate, it means you support the death penalty as that is the net effect. It is imperative that you have list of litmus test issues for the your candidates and at the top of that list must be opposition to the death penalty.

If you are not registered to vote, please register TODAY by calling or going to your local City Hall or order your form online from the Secretary of State at

The Goodbye Gray Davis train is now on the campaign trail with a car for each of the "Great 58" representing the 58 counties of California, a car for each special cause, such as abolishing the death penalty and prisons, to be replaced by rehabilitation programs, and ending with two cars each labeled "Dustbin of History," one for the Democrats and one for the Republicans. With the defeat of Gray Davis, the California Democratic Party will effectively be put into the Democratic Dustbin of History, hopefully followed soon by the same action for the Republican Party.

To all not yet on board the Goodbye Gray Davis Train, also known as Duke Ellington's "A Train," I remind you of the Beatles' song which says, "I hope some day you'll join us; I'm not the only one

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