Sunday, July 25, 2004

A letter from Average Joe - Where I live

Here where I live. We are locked inside our 7ft by 9ft cell 24 hours a day. Except for 2-3 hour periods on yard-exercise per week or unless we receive a visit or a call out to see an attorney or medical.

The cell is for one man. They remind me of horse stalls. 14 in a row. The only difference is these cells - stalls - are made of concrete and steel bars - human stalls.

Here we are warehoused for years and years whiles appeals are played out. Myself - I have been in one of the cells for over 20 years. If all goes wrong, in appeals I could actually end up doing 30 years and then be executed. In effect do a life sentence. Kinda seems like being punished twice. Yet they will say it´s humane and justice has been done. But, what I try to let you see is an over all picture from the inside. It´s not really about me - but rather the system. I am just one of the many.

And there are innocent people on Death Rows. 23 have been found in Florida to date or last I heard. 23 who did years in one of these cells - some for as many as 16 - 1 8 - 20 years. Coming here at ages 20 - 21 - 22. They had stolen from them what I call the best years of their lives.

And when set free - they do not even receive an apology - 9 times out of 10. Not that an apology would make things right. Nothing can restore that which was unjustly stolen away.

The years can not be given back. The bad memories and scars can not be taken away - nor healed. Yet it happens again and again.

Why, because the Death Penalty has become and perhaps always was political. Politicians use it to win office. They promise voters. Elect me and I will make things safer for society. I will speed up appeals and end delays - so executions can be carried out faster. He gives society false hope - to execute a small percentage of people will make society safer and solve problems of crime.

But, As I said it´s false hope. There is no simple solution. Rather using the Death Penalty as a pawn - he wins the vote to office. Politicians as we all know will say and do anything to win the election.

I come back and then we should talk about the police, prosecutors and judges !


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