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There may be few challenges greater for a democracy than collectively defining justice and how it will be served. Guests on BILL MOYERS JOURNAL have offered insight into everything from the limits of civil liberties in a post-9/11 world down to the practical policies of sentencing guidelines.

Add your concerns and solutions to the map.

Melissa Harris-Lacewell, photo by Robin Holland
On achieving justice today: "I often say that Jim Crow, we could think of Jim Crow as a nail. And the protests against Jim Crow were a hammer. A hammer is an extremely effective tool when you're dealing with a nail. Contemporary racial inequality is structural. It's undercover. It is connected with, also with sort of black achievement which is also going on at the same time. Contemporary racial inequality is a screw, and if you take a hammer and start pounding on a screw, you just end up with a mess which means we have to live with the fact that a new generation is going to have to innovate a screwdriver to deal with the new problem. And that screwdriver might not look anything like the hammer. And we can't keep yelling at them to use a hammer for a new problem."

Watch the rest of Bill Moyers' conversation with Melissa Harris Lacewell.

Melissa Harris-Lacewell, photo by Robin Holland
On forgiveness: "As a Christian, you have to say, 'Are there things that are unforgivable?' I'm afraid we follow a lord and master who at the point when they are crucifying him in the most painful way can say, 'Pray for their forgiveness.' And we follow the one who says, 'Forgive one another as God and Christ forgave you.' That is for us the paradigm. We may not always reach to that ideal, That is the standard."

Watch part one and part two of Bill Moyers' interview with Desmond Tutu.

Melissa Jeffrey Toobin, photo by Robin Holland
On the US Supreme Court: "You know, we talk about Supreme Court Justices often as if they exist in some sort of world apart from politics. And I think a rational view of the Court is that it is part of politics. It is not separate from -- and the presidential election I think will determine the future of the Court for decades."

Watch Jeffrey Toobin's full interview.

Melissa Harris Lacewell photo by Robin Holland
On capital punishment: "We've sent 130 men to death row to be executed in this country, at least 130 that we know of, who have later have been exonerated because they were either innocent, or they were not fairly tried. That's 130 people that we've locked down on death row. And they've spent years there. Including Ron Williamson, the guy I wrote about. Well, you know, if that doesn't bother you, go to death row. Go see a death row. Go look at one."

Watch the entire interview with John Grisham.

Melissa Harris Lacewell photo by Robin Holland
On the cross and the lynching tree: "Crucifixion and lynchings are symbols. They are symbols of the power of domination. They are symbols of the destruction of people's humanity. With black people being 12 percent of the US population and nearly 50 percent of the prison population, that's lynching. It's a legal lynching. So, there are a lot of ways to lynch a people than just hanging 'em on the tree. A lynching is trying to control the population. It is striking terror in the population so as to control it."

Watch Watch Bill Moyers' interview with James Cone.

Melissa Harris Lacewell photo by Robin Holland
On justice and wealth: "Crime is secondary. There are no millionaires on death row nor will there ever be. Almost everyone on death row is poor. And do you really think that no millionaire ever committed a capital crime?"

Watch Watch Bill Moyers' interview with Thomas Cahill.

Melissa Harris Lacewell photo by Robin Holland
On justice in the War on Terror: "I fully supported and the administration's authority to detain enemy combatants, including American citizens, without charge or trial, just as Franklin Roosevelt with hundreds of thousands of German and Italian soldiers in World War II. And I knew that we had the legal authorities to do this. But when I went to this dilapidated prison in a naval brig in Norfolk and we saw this young man in — who was a foot soldier for the Taliban — and he was off in a wing by himself. And we saw him through a fuzzy black and white television in the corner of a room. And he was sitting in the corner of his isolated cell. And he hadn't seen many people for a long time. And he was in a fetal position in his bed, sitting there. And I did have this moment where I said I know we have a legal authority to do that. But is this the right way to do this?"

Watch Jack Goldsmith on his experience in the Bush administration.

Melissa Harris Lacewell photo by Robin Holland
On the Justice Department: "The President appoints the U.S. Attorneys. They're political in a certain respect. But the Department of Justice — the power that they hold is so great, it's life and limb, you know — put you in jail, make you run up hundreds of thousands of dollars of legal costs. Even though we understand that political appointees take these jobs. We don't assume that the party in power is going to use that kind of power to advance its political interests."

Watch the rest of Bill Moyers' interview with Josh Marshall.

References and Reading:
Justice Department
House Judiciary Committee
The U.S. House Judiciary Committee's site contains all the documents released thus far in the inquiry into the attorney firings as well as subpoena requests.

NEW YORK TIMES TOPICS: United States Attorneys
The TIMES Topic collection on the attorney firings includes the TIMES own reporting on the case as well as a graphic depiction of the email trail, and links to all documents thus far released by the Justice Department.

NPR: Inquiry into Fired U.S. Attorneys
National Public Radio's extensive collection includes audio of the Senate sessions and extensive analysis.

Supreme Court
The Supreme Court
An unprecedented series and Web Site from PBS that explores the history, impact, and drama of America's Highest Court, The Supreme Court.

Times Topics: US Supreme Court
The collected stories about the US Supreme Court in THE NEW YORK TIMES.

Capital Punishment
CAPITAL PUNISHMENT IN PERSPECTIVE: Get facts and figures on the death penalty around the globe.

Amnesty International: Capital Punishment
Amnesty International collects international numbers on capital punishment. Amnesty International is a member of the World Coalition Against the Death Penalty (WCADP).

Bureau of Justice Statistics
Official statistics on capital punishment for 2006 from the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics. In 2006, 53 inmates were executed, 7 fewer than in 2005. At yearend 2005, 36 States and the Federal prison system held 3,254 prisoners under sentence of death, 66 fewer than at yearend 2004. The site also provides historical statistics from 1930.

Death Penalty Information Center: States
The Death Penalty Information Center's State by State feature maintains information on executions and death row inmates. (anti-death penalty)

"Debating the Death Penalty," NOW on PBS
Voices and resources from both sides of the death penalty debate.

This site, maintained by a victim's advocacy group, offers discussion of issues, news and polls and research studies and a state-by-state current legislation rundown.

"States apart," THE ECONOMIST, September 3, 2007.
THE ECONOMIST contends "Americans' support for the death penalty is waning, one state at a time." The article provides state by state figures.

Related Media:
Jerry Miller
Jerry Miller served 24 years in prison until DNA evidence proved his innocence. He is the 200th person exonerated with the help of the The Innocence Project.

Power and the Presidency
Bill Moyers talks with constitutional law professor Charles Fried and lawyer and author Fritz Schwarz on the growing power of the executive branch.

Dominique Green
The story of Dominque Green, executed at 30 by the State of Texas and the subject of recent research by Thomas Cahill.

Amish Grace
A year after the tragic shooting, Bill Moyers looks at what the Amish can teach us about healing.

Keeping the Faith
Pat Robertson's Regent University is working to ensure that Biblical principles are reflected in the law of the land.

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