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Mike Farrell
Best known for his eight years on M*A*S*H and five seasons on “Providence,” actor Mike Farrell is also a writer, director and producer, his most recent project the motion picture “Patch Adams.”

A social and political activist, Farrell has served on human rights and peace delegations to El Salvador, Nicaragua, U.S.S.R., Paraguay, Chile, Israel, the Occupied Territories, Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Czechoslovakia, Somalia, Kenya, Croatia, Bosnia, Cuba, Rwanda, Zaire, Tanzania, Costa Rica and Honduras.

He was co-chair of the Southern California Committee of Human Rights Watch from 1994 to 2004.

President of Death Penalty Focus since 1994, he has “visited too many death rows” and he speaks, debates, writes and coordinates efforts to stop executions across the country.

Prior to the invasion of Iraq, he co-founded Artists United to Win Without War.

He is the author of two books: "Just Call Me Mike: A Journey to Actor and Activist," and "Of Mule and Man."

Entries by Mike Farrell

A Look Back

(2) Comments | Posted August 12, 2014 | 11:03 AM

As August dawns it comes to me that the years are racing by at a bewildering pace. I, who still think of myself as a naïve kid in many ways, am a grandfather. Taking in the beauty and innocence of my grandchildren brings with it a sweet sadness. I'm painfully...

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Small Business

(1) Comments | Posted June 9, 2014 | 8:27 AM

Returning to El Salvador after 25 years is a step through time featuring vast changes and too much of the same old same old.

No longer is the roadway from the now-more-modern airport littered with corpses to warn those seeking an end to "La Represión," a war on the...

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Rwanda and Reconciliation

(0) Comments | Posted May 2, 2014 | 10:46 PM

All the media attention to the 20th anniversary of the slaughter in Rwanda reeks of irony. If only we had paid as much attention before the blood flowed.

Major-General Romeo Dallaire, the heroic Canadian officer in charge of the UNAMIR (United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda) force, was there...

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Justice in El Salvador

(2) Comments | Posted March 19, 2014 | 10:52 AM

As one of many Americans who fought the Reagan Administration's effort to turn El Salvador into another Vietnam, I'm both inspired by current events in that country and angered at the lack of interest shown by the U.S. media. Like Vietnam, it may be too embarrassing for some to look...

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Quite a Life

(12) Comments | Posted August 21, 2013 | 3:39 PM

It's quite a life, this.

In recent weeks I've been speaking and writing about the injustices being perpetrated in our overcrowded and inhumane prison system and especially condemning the torturous abuse of solitary confinement today being exposed by the hunger strikers in California's Pelican Bay and other so-called "correctional"...

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A Civilized Society

(3) Comments | Posted July 8, 2013 | 11:56 AM

"The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons." - Fyodor Dostoevsky

"A nation should not be judged by how it treats its highest citizens, but its lowest ones." - Nelson Mandela

"... even the vilest criminal remains a human being possessed of common human...

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Titletown Five, Packers Legend Paul Hornung's Horse, To Run For Preakness Win

(0) Comments | Posted May 18, 2013 | 10:28 AM

BALTIMORE (AP) — Former Green Bay Packers great Paul Hornung is looking to pull an upset in the Preakness with his 3-year-old colt Titletown Five — named for the number of NFL titles won by the Packers when Hornung played for them.

"We're ready to go," a smiling Hornung said...

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Goldencents Seeks Preakness Win Over Favorite Orb Despite Disappointing Derby Finish

(0) Comments | Posted May 18, 2013 | 10:07 AM

BALTIMORE (AP) — Goldencents will try for a historic turnaround in the Preakness Stakes after running 17th in the Kentucky Derby.

No horse who finished that far back in the Derby has won the Preakness. The greatest reversal came in 1996 when Louis Quatorze, 16th in the Derby, rebounded two...

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Govenor Charlie Trained By Bob Baffert, Paul Hornung's Titletown Five Among Preakness Challengers

(0) Comments | Posted May 18, 2013 | 9:28 AM

BALTIMORE (AP) — Bob Baffert would settle for a competitive effort from Govenor Charlie in the Preakness Stakes on Saturday.

An upset of Kentucky Derby winner Orb, the even-money favorite, might be asking too much.

"Can he beat Orb? We don't know," the silver-haired trainer said. "I think he could...

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Oxbow Jockey Gary Stevens Also At Kentucky Derby As NBC Racing Analyst

(0) Comments | Posted May 4, 2013 | 2:29 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Gary Stevens will be pulling double-duty at the Kentucky Derby by riding in the race and reporting on it.

The Hall of Fame jockey will be aboard Oxbow, a 30-1 long shot in Saturday's race. Stevens has ridden in 18 Derbies and won three times. The...

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Todd Pletcher Brings Fives Horses To Kentucky Derby, Including Revolutionary, Verrazano

(1) Comments | Posted May 4, 2013 | 1:16 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Todd Pletcher sent his five Kentucky Derby contenders to the track early on Friday morning.

The "Todd Squad" went out at 5:45 a.m. for their final trips to the track before the Derby on Saturday afternoon.

"We're 100 percent done," Pletcher said. "We'll leave well enough...

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John Velazquez, Verrazano's Jockey, Returns In Time For Kentucky Derby

(0) Comments | Posted May 3, 2013 | 3:30 AM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — John Velazquez, the jockey on undefeated Verrazano in the Kentucky Derby, resumed riding on Thursday at Belmont Park.

Velazquez had been sidelined since April 7 with rib and wrist injuries suffered on April 7, one day after he guided Verrazano to a half-length victory in the...

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California's Death Penalty: All Cost and No Benefit

(377) Comments | Posted November 4, 2012 | 2:30 PM

While many important issues will be decided this Tuesday, one stands out for its national and historic importance: In California, the future of the death penalty hangs in the balance with Proposition 34. Also known as the SAFE California Act of 2012, Prop 34 will replace the death...

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Letter to the President re: Cuban 5

(4) Comments | Posted July 11, 2012 | 12:46 AM

Dear President Obama,

Though I fear your staff protects you from letters such as this, I write in the hope that one of our voices leaks through. I am one of thousands of people around the world who ask that you make a humanitarian gesture that is also a meaningful...

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Evolution in the Chaplain Corps?

(54) Comments | Posted July 3, 2012 | 10:45 AM

It's interesting how some things change. Evolution suggests a natural process of growth and development based on a somehow-perceived need for an entity to adapt to new or altered circumstances. The implication, since it is a natural process, is that the change, the new evolved state, will be an improvement...

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The Next Death Penalty Battleground

(430) Comments | Posted October 25, 2011 | 9:22 AM

Georgia's decision to go forward with the execution of Troy Davis in the face of an international outcry calling for time, clarity and justice has, once again, galvanized anti-death penalty consciousness here at home. What passes for fairness in parts of this country, and make no mistake, we're talking about...

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Extremely Unctuous

(5) Comments | Posted July 15, 2011 | 10:51 AM

Raised in the Catholic Church, I was a pretty confused kid. Father O'Reilly, one of the priests at St. Peter's, the church our family attended most of the time, spoke with such a pronounced brogue that I couldn't follow him. But I didn't understand the Mass either, so I smiled...

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Been to Cuba Lately?

(13) Comments | Posted April 21, 2011 | 1:20 PM

Hey, how you doing?

What's new? Been to Cuba lately?

Oh, that's right, you're only a U.S. citizen; you can't.

You can't. How stupid is that?

I guess they worry you'll catch communism or something. But you know what? Canadians and Europeans go there all the time without catching...

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Believe It or Not

(8) Comments | Posted April 11, 2011 | 10:32 AM

In Washington, Tea Party types and their Republican acolytes kept threatening to shut down the government, their mantra, a paraphrase of the old Reagan canard, "Government is not the solution to our problem, government is the problem."

In Florida, their spiritual doppelgangers, Pastor Terry Jones and his Islamophobic Christian...

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Suffer the Little Children

(9) Comments | Posted July 27, 2010 | 7:38 PM

For a people that claims to treasure children, Americans have an odd way of showing it. The sharp line between people of faith who oppose abortion and those who believe it sometimes necessary is seen by many as the primary moral argument in the United States today. But the vitriolic...

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