Dear Journal Reader,
I was sentenced to death on June 12th, 2003, at the age of 25. My first journal entry was made in August 2005, and I was just 27 years old. During those first two years, I was going through a lot of emotional turmoil; I had no real sense of self, or how I had come to find myself in the place I was. I had reached rock bottom in the past, but never really managed to climb back up; every attempt I made to grab at a rock just lead to a mis-step, and I would tumble back down again. But still I focused on going forward, rock by rock, and day by day.
I've always been a writer, but I had never used it as a tool to look inwardly until one of my closest friends suggested I begin to keep a journal. I would send my entries to him as a means of release, but the more I shared with him, the more convinced he was that I should share them with a wider audience. At first he published them on his own website, and there was such a positive response that it lead to the first edition of my own website.
Over the years, my website has been through several pairs of hands. As a result, some journal entries have been lost, and there are gaps; but I've done my best to continue to add updates and new journals regularly, and to continue to examine myself, my life, and to share my thoughts.
I've been through a lot over the many years I've spent on death row; I've had some setbacks and I've faltered...However, I believe that my basic humanity has blossomed and grown, and the person I've discovered I truly am, is a decent and loving one.
I hope you will take the time to read my writings, learn about me and the many other decent human beings on death row, reserving your judgement until you've read everything. I like to tell people that "life isn't a lesson in futility"...If we can own up to our mistakes and shortcomings and learn from them, maybe even teach others how to discover their own humanity, then no mis-step in that climb back up from rock bottom is a waste.
Some names have been changed to protect identities in some of my writings, and whilst memory can often be misleading, the events I remember and write about are true as I remember them.
So...here is my life...Warts and all!
Randy Ethan Halprin