William Robinson Heath – Slain by a Maid, 1920
Say what you want about President Obama, he’s now given clemency to more people than the previous five presidents combined. It’s hard to make decisions that are unpopular, especially when they just hand ammunition to your political enemies. But how about the notion, revered in countless movies and novels, of doing what’s right regardless of the cost? Among the people released, two had life sentences for marijuana possession, and one is a mother with a child and an otherwise clean record who got a life sentence for a single cocaine offense. Hey, Clinton found time to pardon the utter fraud Mark Rich, and George Bush pardoned Scooter Libby, who took the bullet for Dick Cheney, even though both of them should be in Guantanamo right now for war crimes. But no matter, because this is a fine day–it’s rare when such clear cut cases of injustice are rectified in America. On the other hand, there are simply times when you get it in the gut by the maid, and she should probably do twenty-five to life in a cold, dark place. But that doesn’t help much when you’re already somewhere darker.