Under pressure to end racial imbalance on the nation's death rows, the Justice Department yesterday launched a campaign to recruit more white murderers. Spokesman Ralph Leopard III told reporters:
"The situation on Death Row is clearly intolerable, and while this administration will do its best to achieve greater balance by executing as many as possible of the folks already there, most of whom are black, this is unlikely to be enough."
Recent surveys seem to back up Mr. Leopard's views. In a poll conducted last week, few young white men (the Justice Department's target group) rated a career on Death Row as "attractive." Most placed it next to bottom as a career choice, just above high school teacher.
In an effort to reverse this negative perception of the death sentence, the Justice Department will begin airing a series of TV commercials, emphasizing what Mr. Leopard described as "the many perks of life on death row, such as free health coverage, including all prescription and lethal drugs."
In addition, new entrants will be able to keep the lucrative rights to video of their trial and any interviews from behind the walls.
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ment's proposal have been positive. Mr. Leopard countered concerns that the campaign will result in some people getting killed with the statement that the TV ads will encourage several candidates to get together and kill just one person, thus minimizing any negative impact. He also hinted that the court system would be urged to accept confessions to a soon-to-be published list of currently unsolved murders, thus opening the doors to Death Row to those too squeamish to actually kill anyone.
More serious objections to affirmative action on Death Row came from black activist the Rev. Al Sharptooth. "For years, brothers have had to face discrimination in just about every line of work. Now, one of the few areas we can call a genuine black success story is under attack. It's time to say no to quotas!"