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Headline News, 9/22

A decision that’s rather surreal—
The state senator made an appeal
To eliminate waste
That’s of questionable taste
The condemned get no choice of last meal

Headline: Texas Prisons End Special Last Meals In Executions

Lawrence Russell Brewer, who was executed Wednesday for the hate crime slaying of James Byrd Jr. more than a decade ago, asked for two chicken fried steaks, a triple-meat bacon cheeseburger, fried okra, a pound of barbecue, three fajitas, a meat lover’s pizza, a pint of ice cream and a slab of peanut butter fudge with crushed peanuts. Prison officials said Brewer didn’t eat any of it.

Gee, I wonder if something put him off his feed?

While extensive, Brewer’s request was far from the largest or most bizarre among the 475 Texas inmates put to death.

On Tuesday, prisoner Cleve Foster’s request included two fried chickens, French fries and a five-gallon (19-liter) bucket of peaches. He received a reprieve from the U.S. Supreme Court but none of his requested meal. He was on his way back to death row, at a prison about 45 miles east of Huntsville, at the time when his feast would have been served.

Last week, inmate Steven Woods’ request included two pounds of bacon, a large four-meat pizza, four fried chicken breasts, two drinks each of Mountain Dew, Pepsi, root beer and sweet tea, two pints of ice cream, five chicken fried steaks, two hamburgers with bacon, fries and a dozen garlic bread sticks with marinara on the side. Two hours later, he was executed.

Years ago, a Texas inmate even requested dirt for his final meal.

For the record, I hate, hate, hate the death penalty. The notion that the state can kill someone in my name (I take it personally; it’s my country and my state) is repulsive to me.

The idea of a last meal, though. I have one. It features multiple members of the pie family, from meat to fruit. But gee, now that a Texas state senator has decided that getting one special meal before they kill you is coddling, I guess I’ll just have to keep away from Texas, just in case I do something illegal there, like be an atheist.

What would your last meal be? Let’s assume you’re not on death row, but somehow know this is your last meal–or the last one you will appreciate. What’s on your menu?

Comments

  1. sunsangnim says

    I want a smaller government. I don’t want the government to make life and death decisions, so I don’t want the Obamacare death panels. I don’t want the government deciding that my little girl should get an injection of some dangerous vaccine. I don’t trust the government with any decisions whatsoever, especially when it comes to someone’s life. Abortion is always murder, no exceptions. Doctor assisted suicide is wrong because of the sanctity of life.

    Death penalty? Hell yeah, fry the sons of bitches! I go make some popcorn! I’d rather let someone innocent get executed than let a murderer live (nevermind the fact that executing the innocent person automatically means the murderer goes free).

    I never understood this mentality.

  2. says

    It is bizarrely sadistic that the state would be so cruel as to murder a person, yet offer the false kindness of a “last meal.” The whole idea is disgusting.

  3. Cuttlefish says

    Nice article here–http://www.chron.com/news/falkenberg/article/Last-meal-A-way-to-ease-our-conscience-2184565.php at the Houston Chronicle. Bizarre topic, though. Ice cream for a condemned man, seen as coddling by some, as the least we can do by others. Eat, drink, and be merry, for [today] we die.

    I dunno, I suppose if I were on death row, I’d try to convince the senator that the whole idea of a last meal was cruel to the condemned man. Maybe if that’s what he thought, he’d allow it.

  4. Eric Paulsen says

    I would eat everything that gives me gastrointestinal distress and for desert it would be 5 boxes those sugar free chocolates from Russel Stovers that give me the squirts. If they are going to kill me they better bring a mop… and a hazmat suit.

  5. geocatherder says

    Goodness, I can’t even decide if I’m making curry or soup for tomorrow’s (well, today’s) dinner!

    I also can’t imagine eating anything a few hours before the state kills me. My stomach would be cycling between my knees and my ears.

    Seriously, I am appalled at the barbarism of execution. The “state” is us; in a sense all of us are the executioners. Every time we take a life, we become more diminished, more barbaric, more readily defined as the Khanate of the USA. Genghis would be proud.

  6. latsot says

    @geocatherder:

    Goodness, I can’t even decide if I’m making curry or soup for tomorrow’s (well, today’s) dinner!

    I vote for curry.

  7. Thinker says

    First things first: I agree that capital punishment is absolutely abhorrent, and that by replacing thoughtful justice with primitive revenge, it undoes centuries of civilization.

    On to the Cuttlequestion:

    If I knew life was nearing its close
    I’d submit both my palate and nose
    To a harmonic noise
    Of gastronomy joys
    And in bliss I could then decompose.

    Although it would be more important to me who was joining me for the meal (and perish the thought I would have to eat my last meal alone!), food and wine are among the great joys of life, so to go out on a high note, here goes:

    – Hors d’oeuvres and Champagne
    – A shellfish assortment with a Sancerre
    – A small steak, beef or lamb, a ratatouille with a Châteauneuf-du-Pape
    – A “trou Normande” to cleanse the palate
    – 3-4 cheeses
    – Espresso and some very dark chocolate

    And then, friends, you know just what to do…

  8. The Lorax says

    If they told me I murdered a cop
    And soon my existence would stop
    I’d make my last meal
    Not big of a deal
    An extra cheese pizza and pop

  9. besomyka says

    Food, for me, is one of those things that changes from time to time. One moment, the best thing in the world would be a spicy bhan mi sandwich. Pork, and lots of those wonderful quick pickled carrots and daikon.

    But the most reliably savory, something that I could eat in almost any situation and delight in it would be: lamb shank osso buco with a creamy cheese polenta and a side of rainbow chard quicly sauted in olive oil with toasted garlic, red pepper, and redwine vinegar. I’d want an excellent dry fruity red wine to go with it, preferably the same one that was used to braise the lamb.

  10. latsot says

    I can’t seem to get the hang of this. I start off with what seems like a good story, but it never seems to work out. This is the best I’ve managed to come up with.

    If you think it is fair that I fry
    Because justice has gone so awry
    Can’t you temper my murder
    With a steak or a burger?
    I’m an eye, after all, for your eye

    Is it a matter of practice?

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