After appeals and the recanting of testimony from witnesses, as well as the pleas from various human rights groups like Amnesty International and the NAACP, the State of Georgia seems determined to put to Troy Davis to death. Davis was imprisoned for killing an off-duty police officer in 1989.
I'm anti-death penalty as our legal system is far too flawed in how we prosecute the poor, the black and brown, and how we often convict people with sometimes problematic eye witness testimony. And unlike other cases of wrongful imprisonment, there's no proper restitution, no way of making it right, if you kill the wrong person.
Since there's no way to guarantee states won't murder innocent people in a bid to deliver vengeance (because it most certainly doesn't effect the crime rate), I'm against it. But while the United States is progressive in many ways, we can be a very regressive country in others. All Western nations but us have abandoned the death penalty. Many European countries have moved to a more holistic approach in fighting crime by reducing the factors at the root of crime -- poor health care, poverty and poor education. But the U.S. is still pushing a Puritanical, frontier mentality towards justice. I wish I could say this mentality actually worked for us, being more focused on punishment and "drug wars" than rehabilitation and economic/educational advancement, but we still hold 25 percent of the world's prisoners while only taking up 5 percent of the world's population.