When it comes to the death penalty, the United States finds itself in the company of China, Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen. The United States, along with these countries, executed the most people in 2012.
In our country, two percent of counties are responsible for the majority of U.S. executions, according to a report compiled by the Death Penalty Information Center. The notorious “Top 10,” responsible for more than half of the executions since 1976, are Harris County, Texas; Dallas County, Texas; Oklahoma County, Okla.; Tarrant County, Texas; Bexar County, Texas; Montgomery County, Texas; Tulsa County, Okla.; Jefferson County, Texas; St. Louis County, Mo.; and Brazos County, Texas. Read more about the study’s findings here.
The Advocates for Human Rights, working to abolish the death penalty, is active on the steering committee of the World Coalition Against the Death Penalty, represented by Rosalyn Park, The Advocates’ research director. Park also chairs the working group for World Day Against the Death Penalty and is active on other working groups.
Park and Robin Phillips, The Advocates’ executive director, represented The Advocates at the World Congress Against the Death Penalty, a gathering of 1,500 advocates, scholars, politicians, and members of civil society, held in June in Madrid, Spain. At the event, Park presented The Advocates’ Death Penalty Abolition Toolkit, a tool for activists seeking to abolish the death penalty.
By Susan L. Banovetz, The Advocates’ director of communication