Gentry Chandler Ferrell’s Statement Concerning Her Father Dr. Robert Ferrell’s Plea Bargain
October 11, 2007


For close to thirty years both you [Dianne Raeke Ferrell] and dad have had to live in the shadow of an incurable form of cancer. Our family has struggled with an intense uncertainty about physical, emotional and financial health for a long time. Agreeing to a plea deal is a small way for dad to try to eliminate one of those uncertainties and hold on a little longer to the career that he has worked so hard to develop. Few of us have the strength to fight cancer, strokes, the inevitable strains associated with it. Few of us have the strength to stand by and watch our loved ones endure these hardships, and then join the fight.

What differentiates the Department of Justice from us, the dedicated parents, the children, the educators, the researchers, the artists, the friends, is our ability to feel both pain and compassion. It is clear that the DoJ suffers from a misguided understanding of its role as our protector as a result of its mismanagement by a privileged few whose understanding of the world is distorted. Sadly, while institutions merely are tarnished from needless litigation, individuals are torn apart. I remain unable to wrap my mind around the absurdity of the government's pursuit of this case and I am saddened that it has been dragged out to the point where my dad opted to settle from pure exhaustion.

My father's daily existence is one of fighting the good fight. He tries to be a good husband, father, researcher and citizen. Dad once said that he hoped only to leave this world no worse than he found it. I have been inspired by those words because we should be counted lucky to merely maintain what we were given at birth. The fact that after battling these many tribulations he is not left with the strength to take on the monstrosity of this absurd prosecution on top of his struggle to recover from the strokes and face unending cancer is an indication only of his human limitation, and not of any correctness, much less virtuousness or righteousness, of the prosecution.