An Analysis of the Final Words of Texas Death Row Inmates Essay

An Analysis of the Final Words of Texas Death Row Inmates Essay

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While the debate rages on about the appropriateness of capital punishment, since 1982, hundreds of Texas inmates have been executed using various methods such as hanging, lethal injections, and the electric chair. Factors such as racial and sexual profiling, increased public opinion and pressure, reliance on public polls (Ellsworth and Vidmar 1269) have seemingly affected the decision making process, which in turn has raised ethical and social concerns about the genuineness, and an unbiased implementation of the irreversible capital punishment. According to the Death Penalty Information Center, Texas and Virginia alone account for 586 of 1277 executions since 1976, with Texas accounting for over 37% of the total executions in the United States of America. The high execution rate in Texas provides an opportunity to perform a case study on the death row inmates in Texas. Irrespective of the execution method and the state in which it is performed, just before their executions, the inmates are given the chance to make their final statements. It would be intriguing to understand what goes through the mind of an individual facing death, and what they consider as the most important thought to share in their dying moments. Some may express love and gratitude toward their friends and families or remorse about their crimes. Others may be incensed with a feeling of injustice and plead innocence in an angry yet helpless manner. Some may turn pious, claiming to be at peace and going to a better place, while some exhibit apathy or shades of humor. All these notions converge toward analyzing the emotions emanating from the inmates’ statements. A research study to evaluate the theme of emotions that they exhibit would lead to empirical answers. ...

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...Words, Innocence Claims and News Coverage from Texas' Death Row." Thesis. University of North Texas, 2006. Web. 1 Dec. 2011. .
"Number of Executions by State and Region Since 1976." Death Penalty Information Center. Web. 30 Nov. 2011. .
Radelet, Michael L., Hugo A. Bedau, and Constance E. Putnam. "In Spite of Innocence: Erroneous Convictions in Capital Cases." Google Books. UPNE, 26 May 1994. Web. 02 Dec. 2011. .
Vidmar, Neil, and Phoebe Ellsworth. "Public Opinion and the Death Penalty." Stanford Law Review 26 (1973): 1245-270. Duke Law Scholarship Repository | Duke Law Research. June 1974. Web. 30 Nov. 2011. .

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