Media outlets throughout the United States and internationally have included stories and opinion pieces about the oral arguments and about sentences of life without parole for juveniles more generally. The coverage has been balanced and editorials in the major newspapers have called on justices to outlaw the practice. A sampling of the coverage follows.
The New York Times calls for a ban on sentences of life without parole for juveniles:
“You’re dealing with a 14-year-old being sentenced to life in prison, so he will die in prison without any hope. I mean, essentially, you’re making a 14-year-old throwaway person.”
— U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg
The Washington Post writes, “A majority of the Supreme Court on Tuesday seemed troubled by imposing mandatory life sentences on juveniles convicted of murder but struggled to balance proper punishment for young killers with the chance for redemption.”
The Los Angeles Times also notes that justices seem to want to limit juvenile life without parole sentences.
SCOTUSblog offers initial analysis of the arguments:
Attorney Bryan Stevenson, who argued before the Supreme Court against life sentences without parole for youth, participated in a panel discussion on PBS’s News Hour:
“We must stand up and be heard, demand that we, as a nation, develop a culture of understanding and compassion for all, especially our youth, many of whom grow up in poverty and dysfunction without the support of a healthy, stable family and effective, nurturing educational system. ”
–Activist and community activist Sonja Sohn in a Huffington Post article
A mother and the man, who as a 16-year-old son, share their story of forgiveness, redemption and grace: