Gavin Newsom rightly keeps Sirhan Sirhan in prison
Here in New York, when a remorseless cop killer or other notorious murderer has been sprung from prison by a clueless parole board, we’ve wished that there was some check on its powers. But our state doesn’t have such a review. Thankfully, California does, and thankfully Gov. Gavin Newsom has reversed the dunderheaded decision by his parole board to free Sirhan Sirhan, who murdered Robert F. Kennedy in 1968, as the New York senator was running for president.
The parole board approving Sirhan in August was based in part on the L.A. district attorney no longer making recommendations on parole cases (a dumb policy); one of RFK’s children, Douglas, supporting release on compassionate grounds (which is a fair argument); and most troublingly, some weight given the conspiracy theory of Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who says that Sirhan didn’t assassinate his father, someone else did. Maybe it was the same unknown mystery man who killed his uncle in Dallas five years earlier.
We must here note that RFK Jr. is also one of the world’s biggest public health threats, as a prime COVID-19 conspiracy theorist who mongers fear about vaccines and pushes a sadly bestselling book called “The Real Anthony Fauci: Bill Gates, Big Pharma, and the Global War on Democracy and Public Health.” The dangerous screed is preying on the gullible, while spreading infection and death.
After the parole board bought the bilge, Ethel Kennedy and six of her and Bobby’s kids were aghast at the decision and pleaded with Newsom to override it. The governor’s nine-page veto, released Thursday, rejects the innocent man theory as nutso and correctly states that Sirhan’s long imprisonment is not a legitimate reason for release: “Despite his 53 years of incarceration, Mr. Sirhan has failed to develop the insight necessary to mitigate his current dangerousness and is unsuitable for parole.” Amen.
A Palestinian angered by RFK’s support of Israel, Sirhan killed RFK on the first anniversary of the Six-Day War, when Kennedy had just won the California primary. Prison is where he must remain.
The Day editorial board meets regularly with political, business and community leaders and convenes weekly to formulate editorial viewpoints. It is composed of President and Publisher Tim Dwyer, Managing Editor Izaskun E. Larrañeta, staff writer Erica Moser and retired deputy managing editor Lisa McGinley. However, only the publisher and editorial page editor are responsible for developing the editorial opinions. The board operates independently from the Day newsroom.
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