The Thoughts of Troy: The Message Behind His Last Words

Taking a closer look into the meaning behind Troy Davis’ last words.

By: Taren Vaughan

Headlines began to heavily circulate after one of the most controversial executions of this century took place. 42 year old Troy Davis was accused of the killing of a Georgia police officer Mark McPhail in 1989 and sentenced to death 1991. After serving time in prison, Davis was executed on Wednesday night at 11:08 pm in the state of Georgia. Emotions are still flaring from citizens all over the country, namely those within the Black community. From social media networks to live protests shown on television, people have gone out of their way to show their support for Davis and believe him to be innocent of this crime. Sadly, his life was still set to be taken. Even though Mr. Davis knew that his life was shortly coming to an end, he managed to deliver a few words before his execution took place:

“The incident that night was not my fault, I did not have a gun…I did not personally kill your son, father and brother. I am innocent.” –Troy Davis

So the fate of this man rested in the hands of eyewitnesses’ words with no hardcore evidence to back up their claims?

The death penalty itself can be a very sensitive subject for many people to discuss. Some feel that executioners are playing God because they are determining when a person should die and only God should have the say so on that. And because it is not a reversible process, some feel that it should not even be considered in case someone is indeed found not guilty. Others feel that executions are just practices that we as Americans should allow to take place.

Mixed feelings have surfaced because of the execution of this man who professed his innocence up until the very end of his life.

It’s clear that this was an emotional event but what was the true message that Davis was trying to send in his last words?

Putting some deep thought into it, one could recognize numerous messages that this whole situation is trying to reveal:

Those who call themselves “friends” don’t always live up to the title that they give themselves.

When things are going good, everyone wants to befriend you. Being a member of your clique is the number one goal on everybody’s list. Telling you that they care about you and have your back at all times regardless of the situation, that’s what true friends are for. But what about Mr. Davis’ friends? If he was not the one who pulled the trigger, where is this mysterious person who did that he probably labeled as a “friend”? They surely were nowhere to be found at his execution. He was left to die without a “friend” in sight.

Message: From this, we see when choosing friends and hanging buddies, choose them wisely and know that when they say “through thick and thin” that they won’t leave you taking the blame for something that they did.

Guilty by association is just as crucial as being 100% guilty of a crime.

It was said that Davis verbalized his innocence on numerous occasions, including moments before his death. His claim was that he was not the one who pulled the trigger. Yes, he may not have been the gunman but being associated with the one who took Mr. MacPhail’s life is enough to make you guilty in many people’s eyes.

Message: You may not be the one who actually committed the crime but if you were apart of planning for the crime to take place, then you may be viewed as being equally as guilty.

In a nutshell, people need to understand what is truly going on here. If a man can be executed for a crime that he repeatedly claimed that he did not commit, what does that tell us? Could race have been a factor in how Troy Davis’ case was handled? Could it be that our society places more value on the lives of law enforcement officials than it does on any other American citizen that holds no badge? So many questions are still being asked in reference to this high profile case.

Less than a paragraph in length, Troy Davis’ last words were much more powerful than we think. It was more than just a man leaving the world with his final thoughts. It was a wake up call.

Are you awake now?

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