Thursday, 5 April 2007

Author speaks out against death penalty

Author speaks out against death penalty

4/5/2007 8:28 AM
By: Kira Mathis, News 14 Carolina

More Information
Death Penalty

News 14 Carolina's Kira Mathis has more on Sister Helen Prejean's lecture at Wake Forest.

WINSTON-SALEM -- Not many people can say they have seen someone put to death, but Sister Helen Prejean, the author of "Dead Man Walking" has, and for years she has spoken out about the punishment.

Dozens of people gathered at Wake Forest University on Wednesday night to hear a lecture from Prejean. She spoke about the events that lead her to befriend a death row inmate.

"I was scared of him and then I realized he's a human being and I didn't have to worry about what I was going to say in two hours either,” He was so glad to have the presence of someone there who cared about him, he spoke most of the time during the two hours."

Those two hours lead Prejean to spend much more time with the inmate. She was with him when he was executed and now she spends her time speaking out against the death penalty.

Sister Helen Prejean encouraged the audience to stand behind her cause.
Sister Helen Prejean encouraged the audience to stand behind her cause.
"Did you kill a nobody or did you kill a somebody? All of these factors are in here in this lottery of death that we have been practicing in this country for 30 years,” Prejean said. “We have killed almost 1,000 people. We have gassed them, we have hung them, we have electrocuted them, and now we're lethal injecting them."

Prejean encouraged people to stand behind her cause, something that many people who attended say they are already doing.

"I was pro death penalty before I saw the movie “Dead Man Walking,” and literally within the course of two hours, completely changed the course of what I believed and I think it led me towards my conversion as far as the abortion debate,” lecture attendee Nicole Sebik said. “I am very much pro life now."

Prejean has written another book called “The Death of Innocents” and continues to act as a spiritual advisor to death row inmates.

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