Why My Daughter Turned Her Back on the Flag; Incarceration: To Repent and Rehabilitate???? NOT!!!

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Stanley “Tookie” Williams “was condemned in 1981 for gunning down convenience store clerk Albert Owens, 26, at a 7-Eleven in Whittier and killing Yen-I Yang, 76, Tsai-Shai Chen Yang, 63, and the couple’s daughter Yu-Chin Yang Lin, 43, at the Los Angeles motel they owned. Williams claimed he was innocent” (Benjamin).

While he was in prison, however, Williams was in fact rehabilitated. So much so that he “had made amends by writing children’s books about the dangers of gangs and violence. “During Williams’ 24 years on death row, a Swiss legislator, college professors and others nominated him for the Nobel Prizes in peace and literature” (Benjamin).

Williams himself stated, “There is no part of me that existed then that exists now…I haven’t had a lot of joy in my life. But in here,” he said, pointing to his heart, “I’m happy. I am peaceful in here. I am joyful in here” (Benjamin).

But William’s rehabilitation wasn’t enough for then Governor Schwarzenegger. He stated since there was no “apology or atonement…there can be no redemption”.

Really?

So what about his books? What about the fact that Williams spoke out against gang violence? None of that seemed to matter. Despite what is assumed about using “lethal injection” to execute prisoners, it is not humane. And in Williams’ case it was degrading.

“Officials at San Quentin State Prison seemed to have trouble injecting the lethal mixture into his muscular arm, apparently struggling to find a vein.It took them, it may have been 10 minutes to deal with that. Williams at one point grimaced, it looked almost at frustration at the difficulty there,” media witness John Simerman of the Contra Costa Times told CBS Radio News. “You doing that right?” it sounded as if he asked one of the men with a needle” (Benjamin).

I am not going to get into my stance about the death penalty here on this blog, but when my daughter saw my dismay once Williams was, in fact, executed, she asked me what was wrong. So I explained the details of the case to her.

The next day during the pledge of allegiance at school, my then seventeen year old daughter decided to turn her back to the flag. Of course she was brought down to the principal’s office, and I was given a phone call. When asked why she turned her back on the flag she said, “for Tookie Williams, because liberty and justice apparently isn’t for all”.

I couldn’t have been prouder.

Source : Benjamin, Scott. Tookie Williams is Executed. CBS/AP December 13, 2005, 9:41 AM. Web.

Prompt: http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/04/10/daily-prompt-fight-the-power/

Photo Credit: www.talkleft.com

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9 comments on “Why My Daughter Turned Her Back on the Flag; Incarceration: To Repent and Rehabilitate???? NOT!!!

  1. What’s wrong with this world, I have to ask. A man who turned from violence to finding peace in his soul and teaching others gets the lethal injection, so what message does that send to the world? that it’s wrong to turn one’s life around? I don’t get it. :-/

    • exactly, so the term ‘correctional facility’ is inaccurate…nothing is corrected…like mumia said it is the prison industrial complex…prisons make money with cheap labor…governments will build a prison but close schools….but that is another topic…but to sum it up…they made an example out of Williams but it sent the wrong message…they made an example out of mumia but their case got shot to shit…troy davis among many others were wrongly executed but again another tangent for another day

      • Eventually, the ones that CAN be rehabilitated will change their mindset and won’t try because they feel that by doing so they will suffer the same fate. :-\

  2. I would have been so proud of her, too, and I would have asked that silly principal if he had ever heard of the First Amendment. Maybe he should sit in on one of his school’s civics classes, or don’t they teach the Constitution any more?

  3. Pingback: I’ll stand | itsmayurremember

  4. At the beginning of the story it states that the man claimed to be innocent of the charges. Then later states he is a different man from then to now so I am confused if they have the right perpetrator or was he blamed as some are. I know people from all walks of life and I can’t condone murder. Self-defense of course but just to kill is obscenely abhorrent to me. I say this knowing both an attempted murderer and his victim. I say this after two young people were brutally gunned down in a shop a couple doors down from where I worked, which ended up going out of business partially due to this double homicide. I’m still trying to work through my feelings of caring about someone who actually tried to take another person’s life. Though I always feel bad for anyone who would think so little of their own soul as to do something so evil, you can’t help but feel sorry for someone that has somehow sunk to that level of inhumanity.

    • Oh he DID the crime. The point I was trying to make is that judicial system is extremely flawed,correctional facilities are corrupt and weren’t really designed to correct behavior but to house criminals like cattle because the governments make money off of each prisoner. (Hence the prison industrial complex and why Pennsylvania builds more prisons than schools) All that to say, was Tookie wrongly convicted ??? Probably not, but he did rehabilitate and wrote children’s books speaking out against the gang affiliations he was once a part of.

      In case you were wondering, hell yeah I’m against the death penalty, and as long as there are organizations who also have proven people’s innocence (ie The Innocence Project) I will always be. Even if we execute ONE innocent man, that is one too many.

      Sorry for my rant, lol , and thank you for your interest in my post as well as commenting.

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