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September 22, 2010

The JOURNAL's Emmy Nominees

Update: THE GOOD SOLDIER WON the Emmy Award! Three JOURNAL programs have been nominated for Emmy Awards: "LBJ's Path to War: A Tale of Two Quagmires," Bill Moyers' interview with writer and producer David Simon and the JOURNAL's presentation of the documentary THE GOOD SOLDIER. You can watch ""LBJ's Path to War" and the David Simon interview in their entirety online below. You can watch an excerpt from THE GOOD SOLDIER too.

And, if you're in New York City you can view THE GOOD SOLIDER at the Quad Cinema, from September 24 through September 30, (34 W. 13th St. (5th & 6th Aves.), 212-255-8800, Showtimes: 1:00, 2:40, 4:20, 6:00, 7:40*, 9:40*)

Continue reading "The JOURNAL's Emmy Nominees" »

January 25, 2008

Rethinking The Criminal Justice System

(Photo by Robin Holland)

Conversing with Bill Moyers on the JOURNAL this week, author John Grisham said:

“We still have two million people in prison in this country right now. Two million. Our prisons are choked, they’re so full. And most of them are non-violent. Most of them – and we’re spending between $40,000 and $80,000 somewhere to house them, every guy in prison. Now, somebody’s not doing the math here... Lock the bad ones away. But you gotta rethink everybody else. You gotta rethink the young kids who are in there because of crack cocaine. They need help. And if they serve five years they get out there and do the same thing over and over again. The system’s getting worse.”

What do you think?

  • Do you agree with John Grisham that our criminal justice system should be rethought?
  • Why do you think the system works the way it does?
  • What reforms to our criminal justice system would you recommend?

  • December 27, 2007

    Dominique Green: In his own words

    At 7:59 PM on October 26, 2004, Dominique Green, 30, was executed by lethal injection in Huntsville, Texas.

    The following is an excerpt from an interview Dominique gave while on death row, where he spent 11 years before execution. In this clip, he discusses his home life, specifically his mother:

    We invite you to respond by commenting below.

    May 3, 2007

    Learning the Lessons of Wrongful Convictions

    By Barry Scheck, Innocence Project Co-Director

    When we called Jerry Miller to ask him to come to New York to talk with Bill Moyers, he said yes immediately. He had seen some of Bill's programs while spending 25 years in prison for a crime he didn’t commit, and he was eager to have a thoughtful discussion about his case and the issues it raises.

    Jerry was 22 years old when he was arrested and charged with a brutal rape, robbery and kidnapping. Less than two weeks ago, he was exonerated in a Chicago courtroom – at the age of 48. A wrongful conviction robbed him of practically his entire adult life.

    Jerry is the 200th person exonerated through DNA evidence nationwide. He is a truly unique individual – but his case is eerily similar to many of the 199 before it, and his story echoes the thousands of letters the Innocence Project receives from prisoners every year.

    Like 120 of the first 200 people exonerated through DNA evidence, Jerry is African American. Like 77% of the first 200, he was convicted based on eyewitness misidentification. Like nearly all of our clients, he spent years appealing his conviction and came to us as a last resort. And like every single innocent person we have walked out of prison, he now wonders whether his experience will mean anything – whether his case will be a learning moment about the criminal justice system’s shortcomings, or everyone will hear his story, feel bad for him and then go back to business as usual.

    The staff at Bill Moyers Journal told us that readers on this blog are used to seeing questions that spark thoughtful dialogue from a variety of perspectives. Our question is the same one that Jerry and our other clients ask us so often:

    What will it take for our criminal justice system to learn the lessons these exonerations provide?

    What are some of the lessons of these cases? How can we all learn more from these cases – so that other innocent men and women are not wrongfully convicted and left to watch Bill Moyers from prison cells, hoping that in a few years, they too can share their story?


    Barry Scheck is the Co-Founder and Co-Director (with Peter Neufeld) of the Innocence Project. Started at Cardozo School of Law in 1992, the Innocence Project is a national organization that uses DNA testing to exonerate wrongfully convicted people and implements policy reforms to prevent future injustice. Scheck and Neufeld became involved in forensic DNA issues in the 1980s, and their work has shaped the course of law and policy nationwide. Scheck, Neufeld and Pulitzer Prize-winning NEW YORK TIMES reporter Jim Dwyer are the authors of Actual Innocence: Five Days to Execution, and Other Dispatches From the Wrongly Convicted, published by Doubleday.

    Bill Moyers talks with Jerry Miller this week on BILL MOYERS JOURNAL.

    Photo: Robin Holland

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