Citizen Zed - 9/8/11
Reflecting on kohenari’s must read piece today, I recall also being struck hardest by Perry’s first comment after the lamentable applause moment during last night’s Republican debate. Perhaps I’m too jaded to have been shocked by the crowd. And yet this, this I can’t begin to process:
Williams: Have you struggled to sleep at night with the idea that any one of those (234 deathrow inmates) might have been innocent…”
Perry: “No sir I’ve never struggled with that at all…”
If invested with such power, one would think that in its discharge struggle must be the highest duty. Moreover, that any argument giving the State (and hence an Executive) the power over life and death must assume the cultivation of a class of individuals capable of upholding that duty. If that power is to be limited, then we must see spirited struggle at the limit, on the horizon of any letter of the law.
This remains true even in retrospect, struggle as a constant task, whether it’s Hiroshima, Nagasaki, or a single human being. Beyond the enthusiastic crowd, for an aspirant to the office of President to deny this, resting easy on the mechanics of a process, can only be relegated to the category of shame.
As the final hour drags by, I ain’t about to tell you
That I don’t deserve to die
But there’s twenty-seven men here, mostly black, brown and poor
Most of em are guilty - Who are you to say for sure?
So when the preacher comes to get me - And they shave off all my hair
Could you take that long walk with me - Knowing hell is waitin’ there
Could you pull that switch yourself sir
With a sure and steady hand
Could you still tell youself
That you’re better than I am
My name is Billy Austin
I’m twenty-nine years old