New Recruit
by Robert Fratta, #999189

Greetings to all! My name is Robert Fratta. I have been on Texas Death Row since 5/3/96. I am happy to now be able to serve my fellow death row prisoners, their loved ones, and all supporters of The Lamp of Hope Project, as the new Vice President.

I would like to congratulate Windell Broussard on his appointment as our new President, and thank him for nominating me for Vice President. I would also like to thank the Board of Directors for approving me for this position which, I will do my best to uphold for the benefit, advancement, and success of the LHP goals.

In discussing the LHP with fellow inmates, I have come across a lot of negative criticism, which I would like to turn into "constructive" criticism. It seems to me that their disappointment and discouragement stems from what they perceive as past actions, or lack of actions, by the LHP and also a lack of personal knowledge of the actual functions and goals of the LHP. I would like to ask that you please put the "past" behind you, and also, that you ask a board member or officer of LHP for information about the LHP. There are a lot of new people involved with the LHP, both on the inside and outside, who really care and want to do their best to accommodate as many needs as possible. It is currently impossible to fully satisfy every individual's needs due to extremely limited funds, number of supporters on the outside, and also, the number of supporters here on the inside.

The LHP was formed by death row prisoners and ultimately needs us death row prisoners to continue to grow and succeed. We must become involved as a team in order to more effectively help each member of our team.

Look around at how well the vast majority of us get along with one another. We are all in the same boat here and I would like to see us increase this "friendliness" to a true camaraderie and even love for one another. By doing so, we can all be a bigger help and support to one another and make our little "society" a more tolerable place to live in while we strive to educate the public toward abolishing the death sentence. By showing people how well we can get along in here, we can dispel the issue that we cannot get along in society. We can also demonstrate that people do change and can rehabilitate themselves. On the 12/7/97 60 MINUTES television show, Governor Bush was asked to commute Karla Faye Tucker's sentence. The show pointed out that if he doesn't, he is showing "no mercy" to someone who is a changed person. Well, with your help and cooperation, the LHP can educate the public that there are numerous death row prisoners who are just as "changed" as Karla Faye, and/or no "threat to society".

How can we expect people on the outside to care about us if we don't care about one another here on the inside first?! If we demonstrate compassion, we'll get compassion in return. By caring for one another here on the inside, we will see more support come in from the outside. Loving one another is God's command of us and love is contagious!

I implore all of my fellow prisoners who are holding ill feelings towards the LHP, to please forgive any wrongs you believe were done to you or others in the past and give us your input, along with an open heart towards helping us help one another.

The LHP wants to help all death row prisoners as a whole; but it takes every "part" to make a "whole", Please do your "part" by offering your support so that we may all reap the benefits.