Profs and Pints DC presents: “The Capital Punishment Debate,” a look the movement to abolish the death penalty and new calls to keep it in place, with Jason D. Fabrikant, who teaches courses on the death penalty as a senior professorial lecturer at American University’s department of justice, law and criminology.
The death penalty has been applied in the United States—primarily for “worst of the worst” killers—since the colonial period. Now, at a time when a growing number of states have reduced or ended their use of it, crimes such as the recent murder of Idaho college students have given rise to calls for its continued imposition.
Should the death penalty be abolished in those states that still have it as law? Should the federal death penalty remain in place for horrific crimes such as acts of domestic terrorism that take multiple lives?
Come hear such questions tackled by Jason Fabrikant, a scholar of mass incarceration, capital punishment, and constitutional law. He has designed university seminars that immerse students in the capital punishment debate and expose them to perspectives from all sides, and he implements experiential learning opportunities through site visits to penitentiaries with former execution chambers and by letting his students hear directly from death row exonerees, defense lawyers, and prosecutors who have tried capital defendants, and others on either side of this politically divisive issue.
His background leaves him distinctly qualified to engage his Profs and Pints audience in a discussion of the death penalty from a variety of vantage points. He’ll take a deep dive into the question of whether killing a police officer warrants a capital charge, conviction, and execution. He’ll take a close look at data from the state of Texas, the state that has executed the most people since 1976. Most of all, he’ll leave those on hand with plenty to think about after the talk ends. (Advance tickets: $13.50 plus sales tax and processing fees. Doors: $17, or $15 with a student ID. Listed time is for doors. Talk starts 30 minutes later.)
Image: The execution chamber in a Florida prison. (Photo by Doug Smith/Florida Department of Corrections.)