The Death Penalty Question And The Caryl Chessman Case - 1960


(Caryl Chessman - then as now, controversy over the Death Penalty)

On March 2,1960 the question of the Death Penalty came roaring into the headlines with the death by gas chamber of Caryl Chessman. The case had been going on since 1948 and the sentence brought a wave of criticism from both sides of the argument over whether death by State was humane or justified. On April 28th of that year CBS Radio, in a documentary narrated by Howard K. Smith, examined the ramifications of the death penalty and the debate over its use.

It still rages on. Even though most states have abandoned the practice, the recent events in Texas have brought the controversy in full view, particularly this time when questions of the condemned persons innocence came to light and the seeming ambivalence of the Texas governor to review the new evidence made it abundantly clear the practice needs a serious review.

But then it's Texas and they want to secede anyway, so . . .


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