June 29 - 1972 - The Supreme Court Decides Furman v. Georgia
Furman v. Georgia, 408 U.S. 238 (1972), is one of the more mind-bending Supreme Court cases. Not only did it consider a number of different death penalty cases, with different circumstances, but Furman v. Georgia actually had nine opinions, one each from every Justice. 4 of them argued the death penalty was Constitutional, 3 of them said it was unconstitutional as it was then enacted, and 2 said that the death penalty was always "cruel and unusual punishment" as outlawed by the Constitution. While that meant a brief moratorium was imposed, it would be overturned in four years' time, and what Furman really launched was the weirdly detailed debate over capital punishment found to this day.