A Letter from Death Row

Ray Jasper

In high school, I remember supporting capital punishment for the most extreme cases of crimes against humanity. I think of Ted Bundy, and his rampage against women. He kidnapped, raped, and murdered over 30 women, although some believe his victim count is significantly higher. He was executed on January 24, 1989.

I’m not troubled that he is no longer alive. He was the root of my sympathy towards capital punishment. But, with more education and research, I’ve since changed my views. Ted Bundy is an exception…not a rule.

The criminal justice system is flawed. There’s too much ambiguity within the collective system, and all too often, prisoners get caught in a web of profit and politicking. There’s a rise in private prisons, and the supposedly impartial criminal justice system is uncomfortably entangled with the enterprise. People of color, youth, and the poor are most vulnerable.

The criminal justice system cannot be trusted blindly. It is a gross violation to allow this profit-fueled machine the right to execute people.

This is a topic I’m investigating thoroughly. Please expect a post in the future.

For now, let’s focus on Ray Jasper. He is set to be executed in Texas on March 19. He was given the death sentence as a teenager, following a murder of a music executive. He wrote a compassionately chilling letter to Gawker.

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6 responses to “A Letter from Death Row

  1. I live in Texas~and although I do not, and will assume not, to know the facts of this particular case, the prison system is flawed across the country as a whole, NOT just in Texas. I particularly disagree with Mr. Jasper’s statement “IF God wanted me to die for anything, I would already be dead”…well, apparently Mr. Jasper’s freedom is ‘dead’. And why is it, at the end of the day, it has to be about race? Texas also executes white men AND women.

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  2. Because it is about race. Or at least it’s definitely about not respecting the ‘black’ race. Just because they are arresting other nationalities too, the numbers don’t lie. The prison system is vastly a majority black/Latin men. While corporate America is majority white/or shall I say American. The law of the United States is not designed to change for us or be for us. Therefore…..

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  3. This is why I didn’t want to see 12 years a slave, because the media makes it seem like slavery was a thing of the past…like look what they went through….but it still exists, just in a different form….good post, I think I need to do some comic strips for my book that focus on this.

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