Dear friends and ACLU supporters:
We wanted to share information with you regarding the launch of an incredible project – Final Words. Since 1982, the State of Texas has put to death 517 convicted inmates. This translates to a rate of more than one person executed every month for thirty-one years. Final Words is a haunting collection of the final statements by condemned men and women on the verge of a forced death. Collectively, these words remove a silence inherent within the conversation surrounding capital punishment, literally embodying the humanity systematically undermined by state-sanctioned death.
Final Words is a book and traveling exhibition featuring the final statements from the 517 prisoners executed by the State of Texas since 1982. Final Words is the first publication by Neverland Publications, and is far more than just a book or a collection of records; it is a grass-roots crowd-funded project that intends to create an insightful and humanistic-based dialogue around the world in various forums, including student associations, lawyer associations, academic colloquia bringing leading public figures together for education and debate, as well as public discourse in high schools, community colleges, and religious institutions. Speaking to each reader’s personal conscience, Final Words places the individual and their inherent humanistic rights back at the center of the conversation, changing the focus of the debate from criminal justice to human rights.
This project highlights the glaring contradictions found in a society that champions itself as a progressive protector of human rights, yet continues to allow the systematic execution of its own citizens, even with the unavoidable cost of innocent lives that inevitably are swept up in the criminal justice system. Neverland Publications aims to provide a free Final Words book and curriculum to each public high school within the 32 states where the death penalty is legal, totaling approximately 14,000 books, to facilitate insightful, honest and local debate for the next generation.
Click here to find out more about the launch of this important project.