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View Diary: Troy Davis, a defender's perspective (99 comments)

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  •  very difficult question (1+ / 0-)
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    Humans are complicated, so I tend to stay away from one step problems or solutions. However, if forced to pick one thing, I'd say that one of the most commonly shared factors on death row is early childhood abuse. The effects are not only psychological, but physical, as well. For instance, repeated jolts of adrenaline and other similar hormones in a developing brain can have severe consequences, including the physical disruption of the corpus callosum which connects left and right brain spheres. The actual architecture of the brain can be different in people who have been repeatedly exposed to stress as children.

    Prosecution hype dismisses this as the "abuse excuse," and one hears pundits saying "I survived abuse and I'm just fine." The difference is, the abused who end up on death row never had any support systems or any kind of environmental factors that would help heal or mediate the abuse. Add self-medication with drugs and alcohol and you have a rage/fear bomb waiting to explode.

    If I was ruler of the world I would mandate pre-natal health care and parenting lessons for all prospective parents, followed by a good education system.

    Work and pray, live on hay, You'll get pie in the sky when you die." The Preacher and the Slave, by Joe Hill, 1911

    by Joe Hills Ghost on Sat Sep 24, 2011 at 08:51:51 AM PDT

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