Day 25: Death Row Prisoners’ Final Statements and Meals

From America’s Busiest Death Chamber, a Catalog of Last Rants, Pleas and Apologies
Manny Fernandez, The New York Times (June 29, 2013)
Texas has executed 500 inmates since 1982 and posts the final statements of those men and women on a public Web site, revealing a glimmer of humanity behind the numbers.

 

Last Words of Prisoners on Death Row
Will Coldwell, The Guardian (July 2, 2013)
Since reinstating ‘ultimate justice’ in 1982, the state of Texas has kept a record of the final statements of condemned prisoners. Here are some of the most memorable.

 

Why the Death Penalty Is Doomed
Jesse Wegman, The New York Times (July 24, 2014)

 

No Seconds
Henry Hargreaves Photo Reconstructions of Final Meals

America’s use of the Death Penalty was in the news again this week.

Here is a quick snapshot of some articles from last year on death row prisoners’ final statements.

I’ve also included a New York Times Taking Note blog piece by Jesse Wegman on a fascinating legal argument by a Judge who supports the death penalty but thinks that ultimately the practice will end. Why? Because the idea of a ‘humane death’ is proving increasingly difficult to maintain and returning to the guillotine (which worked very well) isn’t feasible.

Finally, photographer Henry Hargreaves’ reconstructions of final meals on death row are hard to forget. Something about the everydayness of the food makes the images stick in your memory.

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