Please check out this slideshow of Last Words of people about to be executed.
What strikes me is that there are basically three versions of remarks in the slideshow: appealing to some higher/religious power; apologizing and/or accepting responsibility; and maintaining innocence.
As to the religious statements, I am sure there are some people on death row (and in prison in general) that truly do explore and embrace a religion or higher power. I am in no way trying to mock their beliefs. However, I am somewhat skeptical. Shortly after I began practicing law, an older lawyer I know told me that he thinks Jesus must live in the Jefferson County Jail, because everyone who goes there finds Him.
I applaud those men and women who accept responsibility for the crimes they committed; I can only hope that it helps in the healing process for the families of those they harmed.
My heart absolutely breaks for those maintaining their innocence. I am not so naïve as to think they are all innocent. But the thought that we have executed even one wrongly convicted human being makes me sick. We, as a society, cannot right that wrong. And we, as a society, should hang our heads in shame at the thought.
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