Posted by: Bro. Lawrence Hayes - firstname.lastname@example.org
Message from Bro. Lawrence Hayes
I have an issue to make public with respect to the integrity of the major anti death penalty organizations. I have been a staunch death penalty abolitionist for over 40 years.. From the moment an all European American jury found me guilty of a killing I had no weapon to commit or intention to occur; and a judge sentenced me to death. I spent two and a half years in the death house and 20 years in prison. After my release, I help found the Campaign to End the Death Penalty and have worked in Education, as a Paralegal, for an anti death penalty United Nation's NGO and in Human Service. I am well educated, can write and publicly articulate my positions, I am conscious and bring first hand experience to an organization that no other employee has.
However, for the past five years I've made several attempts to work in a capacity directly involving anti death penalty work, mainly with groups like the Washington, DC based National Death Penalty Center, ACLU, NAACP Legal Defense Fund, Amnesty International, etc. and haven't been able to land a job. This disturbs me to no end and I would like the anti death penalty activist community, these organizations volunteer members, staff and donors to ask this question of why, with the release so many former death house prisoners, they don't have a single one working for them. And, please, don't take "qualifications" as an excuse.
(Bro. Lawrence goes on to further state):
It just bothers me. I believe the work that's being done is commendable. I think we can achieve more by digging deeper to find out the elements in our society who are really pushing the death penalty. I think we need to increase our tactical strategies to include boycotts and national/international protest. I think we need to push for psychological and emotional therapeutic counseling (stress, anxiety, anger management and bereavement) for the families of men and women facing capital punishment, especially after and execution. I, also, believe that because of the economic situations in most Africa-American and Taino communities, we need to develop creative ways to organize the African-American and Taino anti death penalty voice.
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