President’s Statement on Terri Schiavo
The case of Terri Schiavo raises complex issues. Yet in instances like this one, where there are serious questions and substantial doubts, our society, our laws, and our courts should have a presumption in favor of life. Those who live at the mercy of others deserve our special care and concern. It should be our goal as a nation to build a culture of life, where all Americans are valued, welcomed, and protected – and that culture of life must extend to individuals with disabilities. — http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2005/03/20050317-7.html

Now, I don’t presume that all those individuals on death row are innocent but a reasonable number are. And this very statement from President Bush – former governor of Texas, the leading state in executions – does seem to contradict one another.

Then take the case of Rickey Ray Rector, where one can make more of a connection between the death penalty and the Terri Schiavo statement above:

Rickey Ray Rector, a black inmate who was so retarded that he asked the staff on death row to put the dessert from his last meal aside so that he could have it after his execution. And Rector is only one of many mentally retarded who have been sentenced to death. — http://www.fdp.dk/

Once again… “build a culture of life, where all Americans are valued, welcomed, and protected – and that culture of life must extend to individuals with disabilities.”.

Links:
Innocence and the Death Penalty: The Increasing Danger of Executing the Innocent
Death Penalty Issues
Innocence and the Death Penalty
Death Row Facts

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