Every method of execution currently used in the United States violates the Eighth Amendment’s protection against cruel and unusual punishment. For those who think the electric chair brings death with a simple flip of a switch, consider the case of Jesse Tafero. During Tafero’s May 4, 1990 execution, the electric chair he was executed in, Old Sparky, malfunctioned, causing six-inch flames to shoot out of his head. Three jolts of electricity were required to pronounce Tafero dead. It took him 13 ½ minutes to die. Similarly, the execution of Jimmy Lee Gray in 1983 was agonizingly long and excruciatingly painful. On September 2, 1983, officials had to clear the room eight minutes after the gas was released when Gray’s desperate gasps for air repulsed witnesses. Jimmy Lee Gray died banging his head against a steel pole in the gas chamber while the reporters counted his moans. Of course, this was no worse than the death of Robyn Lee Parks, who was executed on March 10, 1992, by the state of Oklahoma via lethal injection. Two minutes after the drugs were dispensed, the muscles in his jaw, neck, and abdomen began to react spasmodically for 45 seconds. Parks continued to gasp and violently gag until death came, some eleven minutes after the drugs were first administered. A Tulsa World reporter who witnessed Parks's death later said that the execution looked “painful and ugly” and
“scary”. Those are just three of the myriad examples of botched U.S. executions that have taken place in the last thirty years, every one of which subjected the prisoner to horrifyingly long levels of physical and psychological pain. If any punishment in America qualifies for the term "Cruel and unusual" it would be the death penalty as it is currently used in America.
Killing someone for killing another person doesn't solve anything. Rehabbing criminals that can be reintroduced to society is the way we should treat our inmates. Those that remain violent and need to be separate from society should remain so. A life for a life doesn't teach anyone a lesson. Make the killer live in a cell where he must see pictures of his victims every single day of his wretched life--now that's a life lesson.
I don’t think that the death penalty should be banned in
America. We need the death penalty in
America because there is widespread poverty and no gun control. These conditions combine to produce murderous
criminals who will not respond to any other form of punishment. We must use capital punishment for these