Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Death Row Marriages: Consecutive Wife Sentences

Ahh, those somber and profound wedding vows, they tug at the heartstrings every time. Is there really anything more moving than watching two people commit to each other, “till death do us part”? Particularly if one of those people has that very event scheduled in advance as a sentence for hideous crimes like serial murder, rape, child-molestation, and/or terrorism. That’s right, the government may not condone the crimes you’ve been convicted of, but you can still plan that special day and have your marriage recognized at the local and federal level in states such as Florida, Texas, North Carolina and California.

Now, some of these jurisdictions limit contact, with Texas actually forbidding any touching at all-- a proxy is called in during the vows. These two people will never live together, produce children, or even (in some states) be left unsupervised for a moment. Yet despite the restrictions on behavior and personal liberty imposed as part of a stint on Death Row, these citizen-felons still retain the civil right of marriage! Call the caterer, pick out a dress and book the prison chapel; the list of honeymoon destinations might be a little limited, but I hear the lighting in Supervised Visitation can really set the mood.

So even if you’ve got a date with a hypodermic syringe, don’t let that get in the way of planning a white wedding! Despite what you may have been convicted of, despite the life, liberty and happiness you’ve taken away from others, rest easy in your bunk knowing that you still might find that special someone.

Just try not to fall for your cellmate, because even if you are getting married in prison, it still can't be to a person of the same sex.

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