Capital Punishment is Inhumane

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In the past, barbaric practices such as stoning, drowning, impaling, and beheading took place. Today, capital punishment is typically accomplished via lethal injection as a default. However, some of the states that support the death penalty use other methods of execution. Electrocution, for example, is still practiced in eight states, following by the gas chamber and hanging in three states, and one state still uses firing squad (Snell, 2013). Lethal injection is the most commonly used form of capital punishment, and while it is seemingly the most humane method, it can still prove painful. After the prisoner is restrained in a chamber, two IV tubes are inserted in each arm. A saline begins to flow through their body, which can be any number of drugs – Pavulon, Pentothal, or Potassium Chloride. The Pentothal puts the prisoner into a deep sleep, and can be administered up to five grams – a lethal dose. Pavulon is a muscle relaxant that paralyzes the lungs and diaphragm. Potassium Chloride induces cardiac arrest by interrupting the electrical signalling essential to heart functions (Descriptions of Execution Methods). In 2009, Ohio announced a new lethal injection drug that is believed to be a significant step toward eliminating the risk that inmates will suffer excruciating pain during executions. In an execution via lethal injection performed in accordance to the Department of Corrections’ procedures, there is a risk that the inmate will not be adequately anesthetized and will experience pain and suffering. The safety of an execution by lethal injection rests significantly on the ability of the IV Team to ensure that the IV is functioning properly in order to deliver the full dose of drugs into the inmate’s circulation. Failure t... ... middle of paper ... ...n System. Tennessee Bar Journal. Messerli, J. (n.d.). Should the Death Penalty be banned as a form of Punishment? Retrieved from http://www.balancedpolitics.org/death_penalty.htm Purser, B. (2013, December 05). After twenty-nine years in jail, Timothy Johnson is free. The Telegraph. Retrieved from http://www.macon.com/2013/12/05/2815206/jurors-deliberating-fate-of-warner.html Racial Bias. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.eji.org/deathpenalty/racialbias The Innocence List. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org/innocence-list-those-freed-death-row Saad, L. (2013, January 09). U.S. Death Penalty Support Stable At 63%. Retrieved from http://www.gallup.com/poll/159770/death-penalty-support-stable.aspx Snell, T. L. (2013, July 16). Capital Punishment, 2011 - Statistical Tables. Retrieved from http://www.bjs.gov/index.cfm?ty=pbdetail&iid=4697

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