That's the title of an article in North Carolina's Indy Week by Matt Saldana. LINK Here's an extended excerpt:
The Racial Justice Act, also known as Senate Bill 461, passed 7-5 with a controversial clause ensuring capital punishment will resume in the state. It now proceeds to the House Judiciary I Committee, which approved an earlier House version this session.
The bill faces ardent opposition from the N.C. Conference of District Attorneys, although some of its members, including Durham District Attorney Tracey Cline, have broken with the party line to support the measure. In an interview with the Indy, she indicated her support for the Racial Justice Act, but refused to say so directly in order to avoid a rift with the Conference of District Attorneys.
"The conference votes, and makes their decision," she said. "My position was totally different."
Speaking on behalf of the Conference, Wake County District Attorney Colon Willoughby appeared before the Ways and Means Committee and compared disproportionate sentencing based on race to similar sentencing based on "blood type" or "astrological signs."
Willoughby called the use of statistics, which the bill would allow, a "disingenuous and scientifically unsound method to insert some sort of causal relationship without proof."
A 2001 study conducted by two University of North Carolina professors, who analyzed cases over four years in the 1990s, found the odds of receiving a death sentence in North Carolina increased 3.5 times in cases in which the victim was white. In addition, the study found, black defendants were twice as likely to receive death sentences in instances of identical crimes.
Earlier coverage of the RJA legislation begins here.