(The executioner! found it difficult to reconcile himself to the task of destroying the life of a member of the sex which his whole upbring­ing had taught him was deserving of respect and tenderness as the giver of life.1′

ITEM Twenty-three Americans have been executed and later found inno­cent. All twenty-three were men.’6

ITEM Approximately 1.900 women commit homicide in the United States eoch year.’7

ITEM When women commit homicide, almost 90 percent of their victims are men.18

Since 1954, then, approximately 70,000 women have murdered; their victims include about 60,000 men, but. as we saw in the second Item of this chapter, not one woman has been executed after killing only a man.19

For nearly four decades now, we have become increasingly protective of women and increasingly protective of men – even if that man is a boy and a legal minor, as was Heath Wilkins. Here’s how this happens.

ITEM Marjorie Filiptak and 16-year-old Heath Wilkes both pled guilty to being coconspirators m a murder. Neither was a hardened criminal. Heath Wilkins got the death sentence; Marjone Ftyxak went free.20

ITEM When Heath Wdkns was found to have been a victim of child sexual abuse, it did not deter the judge from givr>g him the death sentence.21 When Josephine Mesa was found to have been the victim of child abuse, the jury freed her.22 Josephine Mesa had kied her 23-month-old son with a toilet plunger.