Regardless if you’re for or against the death penalty, there’s at least some agreement that the method of execution shouldn’t be cruel and unusual. The drugs for lethal injections seem to be running into supply problems, resulting in some botched executions. One might think the methods for assisted suicide would step in, but doctors like Jack Kevorkian are pretty scarce.
- In Utah, Gov. Gary R. Herbert signed a bill into law that establishes a firing squad as a legal means of execution by the state if the drugs for lethal injection aren’t available. In the US, 34 states enforce a death penalty and use lethal injection as the primary method of execution. Secondary methods include electrocution, gas chamber, hanging and firing squads. [url]
- You might think execution methods have been well-researched to be effective or that it should be easy to design a method that provides a painless death. Oklahoma is considering “nitrogen hypoxia” (suffocation that should be painless because it doesn’t contribute carbon dioxide into the person’s bloodstream), and nitrogen gas is cheap and easy to use. [url]
- Singapore executes by hanging — the “long drop” method — which allows for convicts to donate their organs afterwards. This is definitely not a painless method, but when it’s done correctly, death is relatively swift. [url]
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