FROM Richard Dieter
Do We Still Need the Death Penalty? Capital punishment is on the decline in the US, though it's still on the books in 32 states with more than 3000 inmates on death row. It's also back in the news since federal prosecutors said they would seek death for the Boston Marathon bomber. In addition, death-penalty states can't get the drugs used for lethal injections, because European companies won't import them for that purpose any more, and replacements used in two recent executions have raised questions about "cruel and unusual punishment." Legislators in some states want to go back to gas chambers, firing squads and hangings. Is the "ultimate penalty" a deterrent? Can it ever be "humane?"
Human Rights in the era of Donald Trump President Trump’s UN Ambassador, Nikki Haley, said today the US might pull out of the United Nations’ Human Rights Council. Serious violators of human rights are members of the Council itself–and a US resignation could make things worse. Later on today’s show, now that he’s into his second term, comedian turned US Senator Al Franken is telling jokes again.
Who's to blame for the opioid crisis? Some of the lawyers who took on Big Tobacco are now going after Big Pharma. It’s all about the deadly epidemic of opioid use. Are the drug companies to blame? What about the users? Later, on today’s Talking Point: making sense of Britain’s upset election.
Venezuela spirals into economic and political chaos Venezuela, a country whose potential for prosperity is unmatched, finds itself on the verge of civil war. What sustains the repressive government? With time running out, guest host León Krauze looks at what the international community can do to pull the country from the edge of collapse.