Voices from the Inside

Death Row Prisoners Speak Out

By: Karl Chamberlain,Tremane Wood, Renaldo Hudson

One day the poor will have their own voice

 Hello Campaign activists,

Thanks again for another issue of the New Abolitionist! I will send the Campaign two more books of stamps to cover my subscription. I pass your newsletter all over this place, recycling it 20 times before it leaves my deck. Everyone reads it for the same reason I do: "The whole system is broken (we're all human) and more needs to be done (like you guys are doing) to make the general public aware."

The problems are far more than the death penalty, which is by far the sickest inhuman problem.

I thank you all for educating the public about our broken system. Since it has been proven broken at the death penalty level, what the heck must be going on with the other convictions in this broken system? One day, the poor will have their own voice. Until then, please continue to lead our way.

It inspires me to try to open some eyes myself. I saw how many hearts I broke coming here--especially my mom's. It is very sick the power of intimidation and fear that this system inflicts on our loved ones.

Your actions and heart makes me want to reach out and thank you all for what you do. There is a lot of room and need for change, and I feel you guys are going about it the right way. Please keep up the great work. Thank you all!

A prisoner from Illinois who presently needs to remain anonymous

Beloved Momma

Below is the last note that Karl Chamberlain wrote to his mother before he was executed in Texas on June 11, 2008. We thank Donna for sharing these personal thoughts from her son. Donna is still in pain, grieving the loss of her son. If you would like to drop her a note you can reach her at: Donna Chamberlain, 811-R Jackson, Las Vegas, NM 87701.

Beloved Momma,

We've been through a lot together, but Love is still standing. I want you to know that I love you with all my heart. I truly enjoy our lives together, our years, our months, our weeks, our hours together. I thank you for every word, every smile, every sorrow and every joy poured from your heart into mine!

It is very important to face the darkness before our last days, whether they come on these last days toward an execution, or our last days on earth. It's hard, and painful to first face that darkness--but by facing it, we learn to go through it, it passes away--and we find the true light and love of life on the other side. It is a wondrous gift to go through that and find what is really means to be alive. That's where real forgiveness comes from, that's where real love comes from, because although, I regret times in my life I hurt others, my own sorrow and suffering is now NOTHING BUT JOY, the joy of having even a short life...joy.

I know this may seem just like words to you, but I want to say it again, now my own sorrow and suffering is NOTHING but joy. If I live or if I die, I am thankful just to have lived and known THIS LIFE. Actually, the main reason I would pray and hope to live is not for myself, but for you, Momma, and my other family and my friends. That I might live to love another day and all the tomorrows that could come.

I love you, I love you, I love you.

Karl

 

There are no windows in my little world

Hello. My name is Tremane Wood. I'm currently residing on Oklahoma's death row unit, or the infamous H-Unit, ferociously battling to declare my innocence.

H-Unit is the true definition of ugly, and it tends to get extremely lonely. There are no windows in my little world. The only sunshine that is able to shine through the cracks is when you get a piece of mail. And I receive very little of it.

I love to read because it contributes to me becoming a better person, and my quest for wisdom is grand.

This place is slowly taking all the small things that keep us busy. In just the last year, they have taken our rights to have pictures of us for our families, our shoes, magazines and our hobby crafts--everything we use to keep us busy. But fortunately, they can't take our writing.

If you are interested in sharing a little of your time, don't hesitate to write.

Tremane Wood, #271967

H-Unit SW 4 Cell F P.O. Box 97 McAlester, OK 74502

 

I would be honored to add my voice

I would be honored to add my voice to those participating in the Live from Death Row tour--honored to add my voice to those calling for justice and mercy.

It is my prayer that those in the struggle don't forget the men and women who are guilty, yet are sober today and conscious, willingly taking our place in the battlefield.

On a personal note, I work in the prison helping men get ready for freedom as I dream of it coming to me someday. But I don't work half-heartedly. I give them all that I have. I do want you all at the Campaign to know that I have a petition sitting on the governor's desk. So 1,000 e-mails to the governor will keep my name on his mind.

Please let everyone know I'm staying positive and shall not give any of my days to negative thoughts. There are 1,440 minutes in this day. I shall give you some of them to bless as many as I can.

I stand sober and conscious of the cost of this struggle. I stand in unity with the Campaign, as you fight against prejudice and discrimination so often perpetuated against so many in this society. I realize so many are foolish, and think that injustice happens to the poor and black and brown, and will never touch them. But I say to them, open your eyes.

Keep the faith.

Sober and conscious,

Renaldo Hudson #B02995

Lawrence Correctional Facility Rural Route #2 Box 31 Sumner, IL 62466