Kenneth D. Williams: Dead, but his words live | Arkansas Blog

Kenneth D. Williams: Dead, but his words live



Kenneth Williams,
the multiple killer executed last night, became a prolific writer in his 17 years on Arkansas Death Row. Some of his final-day thoughts appeared here yesterday thanks to Deborah Robinson, who corresponded regularly with him.

A Facebook page has been set up to share Williams writing. It's an outgrowth of his work with UA English professor David Jolliffe and the NWA Prison Stories Project, which has gathered writing from several Death Row inmates.

The Facebook page includes a video of readings of Williams' work and examples of his writing. In the most recent Facebook post, from Tuesday, he wrote:
Does the end justify the means when the outcome is the death of a person even if he's not innocent? That's the question? The State of Arkansas and its Department of Correction obtained its Lethal Injection drugs to execute eight prisoners through the means of three things: Lying, Stealing, and Cheating. The three deceptive cocktail. Like the three drug cocktail they use to execute prisoners.

According to an investigation conducted by the Associated Press and sworn testimony and documentation from a California base drug company... The ADC: (1) Lied to get their drugs. They said they would not use the drugs to execute prisoners. (2)The ADC stole the company's product. It took what did not rightly belong to it by taken it through deceptive means knowing the company would not knowingly sell the product to them because of bad intentions. And (3) The ADC cheated the drug company through dishonesty; selling them a lie as if it was the God given truth. The Attorney General of Arkansas said the state wishes to send a message that Arkansas will protect its citizens from criminals, and justice will be done. I’m no criminal master mind, but isn't lying, stealing, and cheating to get what you want criminal behavior, and covering it up? It’s just a question. She must be unaware that the reputation of Arkansas needs protection as well.Theres another message being sent here along with her message: It’s okay for Arkansas to LIE, STEAL, and CHEAT, Long as we still get to call it justice here. When did justice become so warped? And when did the safety of the people of Arkansas become depended upon Lying, Stealing, and Cheating in order to get what it calls justice. And people call us criminals.
The questions he raises about the state's methods to acquire execution drugs deserve answers, however you might feel about the correctness of the death penalty in general and in Williams' specific case.

PS: As I indicated several times yesterday, Williams' sophisticated observations don't strike me as those of someone with an extraordinarily low IQ, as his attorneys had argued. But I'm no doctor. The horrors of his childhood might well have caused organic damage, as was argued. He might have suffered from the drug protocol last night. Or maybe he did not. He did not, it should be noted, dispute his guilt in the crime for which he died.

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