Tuesday, June 03, 2008


Chuong Tong, an inmate on Texas Death row, writes about the diffence which pen friends make for the people on death row:

With each gust of wind, the great sandstorms in the Egyptian desert pound away at the magnificent pyramids, slowly but surely grinding away these impressive structures. In like manner, the weight and severity of a death sentence, daily life on death row is both burdensome and it grows ever more wearisome with each passing day. Life on death row can be compared to a weight that bears down on your chest, suffocating and squeezing every ounce of breath out of your body.
The anticipation of death at times is more tortuous and anguishing than death itself. The uncertainty of when your number is drawn and you have to take that final walk down the execution chamber can paralyze many men into depression. Many who live without any hope are already dead, walking zombies who close themselves off to the world. What little of the world that does find it’s way through these steel bars and concrete walls that are designed to keep us separated from the world.(...)

Sadly, many inmates on death row never experienced a stable family environment. For many, the only family they have ever known is the prison-gang families. At times, it is humbling to realize that many people use a prison-gang family as the standard by which they judge the quality of every other relationship. In their broken lives, there is no other meaningful love with which to compare that emotion to.

Where there is no vision or purpose in life, all hope is lost. (...)

But what hope can be found by a condemned inmate, awaiting execution on Texas death row? For many, past memories are filled with pain, and the future is just as bleak… they have a date with the executioner!

What then gives these men hope?

Please read complete article here

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