On August 25 this year, I watched a TV documentary on a fate so grim, it makes my own struggles appear as insignificant as a broken shoestring: The conviction of Jens Soering to a double life sentence for murder in the first degree - a crime, he never committed. From reading into the facts all day long today, facts on this incomprehensibly cruel account of events and their ungraspable outcome - and I'm not talking about the crime scene, which can only be described as a slaying spree -, the almost inhuman sacrifice of his life being consciously thrown inside of prison walls with him being left to die there, the hard-headedness of certain parties responsible for handling his trial or defending his case, the series of procedural sloppiness and plain error, the most blatant betrayal by the one person he tried to save from the electric chair and the fact that until today he has been spending more time behind bars than in freedom - the sum total of facts of this tragedy surpasses any other I've ever heard of or read about.
To cut a long story short: Mr. Soering, a German citizen and son of a German diplomat, has been innocently incarcerated for 21 years - that must become apparent to anyone reading the series of events with a clear and unbiased mind. True, he has admitted to the crime - under the false assumption to be enjoying diplomatic immunity and thus being able to save his then girlfriend from the electric chair. He later revoked his confession, but was tried and convicted for first degree murder, nonetheless. I tend to call it a classic "a pawn for a king" case, with him being the pawn and the US penitentiary system in general and the undisputability of Ms. Haysom's reputation and that of her family in particular. But more than anything: I see a clear wish by US officials as well as citizens to hang on to their conviction of the US jurisdiction never failing and never making exceptions for anyone - much less an arrogant, nerdy, snotty know-it-all from a foreign country who has the nerve to nervously laugh in the face of the prosecutor from plain terror and shock over what was going on at that moment in that court-room.
I'm afraid, I can't spare you to read a bit into it for yourselves. More importantly, anyone reading this and anyone with their hearts in the right spot, please take the little effort and time to provide yourself with the full account of things and support Mr. Soering's plea for parole and clemency. I have set up a wordpress blog in order to collect supporting "votes" to this end and then file a formal petition (link removed upon request of Jens' close friends) to the Governor of Virginia. I think there'll be more momentum this way, i.e. if we collected supporting statements first and then sent out a petition every 1,000 "signatures" or so (here effectively being comments). I may be refining the introductory "mission" over the next few days as well as figure out a procedure as to directly sending emails to this blog, thus posting a comment with every email. I know - comment spam might become a problem, but it should be worth it.
I am doing all this, because I'm frankly in shock over the mere fact that things like this go on in our world and that people can actually be that cruel to each other. Please support this. Thanks.
UDPATE: I called Ms. Gail Sterling Marshall as of today, November 29th 2007, 9 am EST to confirm delivery of an email I sent her about a week ago. She confirmed receipt of my message and asked me to give her about a week's time to meet and consult with Jens directly on behalf of our initiative. See - something's happening! Thanks for your support, this is major!