We are all interconnected. I am you and you are me. What you do to me I do to you. When we hate, we kill one another and no one is to blame because we are all the same.
You see a man before you; a killer. We are quick to judge, as such. This world is filled with learning, and so, now, let’s look at our selves…
A Means to an End?
I just finished binge watching Netflix. I’ve really been into a crime documentary series called, I Am a Killer.
The show features stories being told from different prisoners who have been convicted of capital murder and are now awaiting their fate on death row. With plenty of time to think about their past, each inmate reflects on the who, where, what, and why’s of the events that led up to their crime. Each story is unique. With nothing more to lose, they speak from their heart the truths that made them the people that they are. Their testimonies are raw, spoken from a place of isolation of not knowing regular life in the outside world. They confide to the Netflix audience the choices they made that led them to where they are now.
Inmate #322534 tells his story how he killed his cellmate in cold-blood with his bare hands. A planned murder with the hope that it will land him a spot on death row.
Detailed infractions of every additional crime he committed while being incarcerated is under review. Now being analysed by a lawyer, the state determines that death row is an appropriate new sentence. Then another lawyer, his only friend of 10 yrs, stating “yeah, he deserves a measure of sympathy.” Most of his life already spent in maximum confinement before any family had ever reached out to him. Another perspective comes from a distant cousin, who said he was led by God to make contact with him.
Never having a proper job, bitterness and hate drove this man to excel at being a career criminal. Since he was 12 years old he made a living with petty crime. When he was just shy of 17 years old, he assaulted a security guard, which landed him a place in an adult penitentiary.
Bypassing the chance of being rehabilitated through juvenile prison, he was instead given 10 years in an adult prison. There he learned how to be really bad really good. Lost in a system, his bitterness brewed more hate, which resulted in a deeper history of rebellion. Extended sentencing while being incarcerated confined him to maximum confinement for most of his life. Motivated by hate, having no stimulation or visitation rights took any good motivation away creating a monster with an agenda to excel at being one.
Love being dead to him, a hardened heart, allowed for him to only know hate.
Like being rewarded with a university scholarship he now sits on death row and tells his story of what emptiness looks like.
A man who never knew love didn’t know how to love, so who really is to blame? Given his circumstances can we say we wouldn’t have acted the same?
What is most disturbing and sad, to me, is how he anxiously awaits his death punishment.
Who failed who and who really is the killer?
We all want to be Olympians and excel at our craft, but the only thing that truly matters is that we made good choices.
Consequences are allotted to each and every one of us. We all feel each others pain in one way or another.
We are rebels that rebel against one another. Truth is, we need to rebel against ourselves.
When we want to hate; choose to love, when we want to be mean; be kind, when we want conflict; choose peace, when we want wickedness; choose goodness, when we want to be deceitful; be faithful, when we want to be hard; be gentle, when we want to be out of control; choose self control…
So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Let us be champions at choosing right so that we all can know love, then all the world will learn to be right.
— Get good at being good.
Shannie Alvarez — A Gentile with a Jewish Heart
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