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Texas Ends Last Meal Requests

SALE TODAY: Learn Piano on iOS Prison inmates on death row are granted one small luxury before executed - a last meal of their choice. Well, not in Texas anymore. On Thursday, prison officials in Texas decided to end the practice of allowing condemned inmates to choose their last meal. The day before, Texas had executed Lawrence Russell Brewer, one of the men who chained James Byrd Jr. to a pick-up truck and dragged him to his death in 1998. But the state first reportedly granted Brewer the following request: two chicken-fried steaks, one pound of barbecued meat, a triple-patty bacon cheeseburger, a meat-lover's pizza, three fajitas, an omelet, a bowl of okra, one pint of Blue Bell Ice Cream, some peanut-butter fudge with crushed peanuts and three root beers. According to various reports, Brewer did not eat any of it. The decision to end the tradition in Texas was made after State Sen. John Whitmire, a Democrat and the chairman of the Senate Criminal Justice Committee, called and wrote to the head of the state prison agency. He said that if they didn't abolish the practice, he would take the matter to the State Legislature. He said he was indignant that "a convicted capital murderer who committed one of the most hideous crimes imaginable would be allowed to order not one item, but numerous items and then not eat" and that Brewer should be "made a celebrity two hours before he was executed." Now, inmates get to eat only what the kitchen serves. It was not immediately clear whether other states have made similar moves. Some limit the final meal cost - Florida's ceiling is $40, according to the Department of Corrections website, with food to be purchased locally. Others, like Texas, which never had a designated dollar limit, mandate meals be prison-made. So what do you think? Do death row inmates deserve a custom-made last meal before they are executed? Leave a comment below and let us know.
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