Gov. Rick Perry would not say Sunday whether he personally thought George Zimmerman was guilty of murdering Trayvon Martin, but refuted charges that the justice system is unfair to minorities, saying that “our justice system is colorblind.”
In Texas, imposing the death penalty in capital cases comes down to one question: is the defendant going to be a “future danger” if he or she is not executed? Mr. Buck was sentenced to die based on testimony by Dr. Walter Quijano, who told jurors that Mr. Buck was more likely to pose a future danger to society because he is black. Dr. Quijano’s testimony came in 1997, more than 20 years after Texas promised the Supreme Court that “no correlation exists between the race/ethnic background of a defendant and the probability that he will be either convicted of capital murder or given the death penalty.”
But maybe we could not, that was all before Rick Perry. But this is not — Texas currently has 300 inmates on death row — two-thirds are minorities, with African-Americans being the largest group on death row by far, though they make up just 12 percent of the population. Though whites are the most populous ethnic group, they make up the smallest percentage of death row sentences, far less than one-third of death row.
But hey, Rick Perry is allowed to say his court system is color-blind. When has that guy ever been correct or fair either?