Friday, July 25, 2014

Use firing squads ...

Alex Kozinski, chief judge of the Ninth US Circuit Court of Appeals, calls the current system "inherently flawed" and says states that want to execute inmates should return to more "primitive—and foolproof—methods" of execution, NBC reports. "The guillotine is probably best but seems inconsistent with our national ethos," he writes. "And the electric chair, hanging, and the gas chamber are each subject to occasional mishaps. The firing squad strikes me as the most promising. Eight or 10 large-caliber rifle bullets fired at close range can inflict massive damage, causing instant death every time." [Full]

Actually, the Brits - when they were at the top of their game - probably had the best idea.


bocopro said...

My druthers for punishment of heinous crimes such as rape, murder, arson resulting in death, terrorism, and similar or related assaults on people who did not deserve disfiguration, debilitation, or death has always included a proviso by which the victim(s) or NOK(s) of the victim(s) figure significantly into the time, place, and manner of the just desserts.

I would have no objection to allowing the spouse, parent, child, or sibling of a murder victim choose and carry out the punishment by whatever means seems most appropriate.

If the NOK or victim elects NOT to participate in inflicting pain or dismemberment or death upon a perpetrator, volunteers should be sought from the general public. I'm fairly certain that our prison systems can find adequate numbers of sociopaths or psychopaths to bludgeon assholes to death or surgically remove the tallywhackers of rapists with claw hammers or eviscerate terrorists with a circular saw.

Helly said...

You're hinting at a few important societal issues here, Rodge. Let's lay them on the table.

Executions are essential, because some people are too dangerous to be set loose in public. Caging humans for life is inhumane and far more savage than imposing a quick death.

Executions should never be cloaked. Unless they are staged as an educational public spectacle, the decades of effort and expense are all but wasted. There are no privacy issues because the dead guy has no further concerns about his privacy. This applies to lesser crimes as well. For example, when police attempt to snatch a camera, they should be given one free. And be forced to eat the entire device in the public square. Naturally some long-term dental problems and short-term breathing problems may ensue. Don't do the crime if you can't do the time.

Of course there will always be problems with trying to perform executions by non-lethal drugs. So let's just stop using narcotics that are designed to produce blissful unconsciousness rather than death.

Firing squads are always better guillotine executions: More noise and less mess. Plus, government employees get confused keeping the right heads and bodies together for internment. Firing squads also offer much more opportunity for public involvement. Never a shortage of volunteers.

Even with volunteers, I feel there are moral and practical issues with assigning members of the public a duty to kill. Instead, we should put this task to the condemned themselves. Once sealed into an execution chamber, they should be given all the time they need to beg God's forgiveness and push their own button. Automatic in situ cremation would be a nice feature to remove any concerns about efficacy of the execution.

Opponents of the Death Penalty make the valid point that execution is often falsely applied and uncorrectable. We must face this criticism squarely. Any policeman or prosecutor who manufactures false evidence or withholds exculpatory evidence contributing to an unjust execution is a 1st degree murderer and should be executed too. If they can't bear that standard of performance, they can get a real job.

Regnad Kcin said...

I say we hang the perp (after being found guilty by a jury of his peers) by his ankles. Then, give all the NOKs fungo bats and let them have at it. If there are no NOKs, then randomly select half a dozen citizens down at the welfare office waiting for their SNAP cards to do their duty. Crime rates would drop overnight and the police could enjoy their doughnuts at Dunkin's in peace.

Jess said...

In a perfect world, criminals would be punished for their capitol crime during the attempt.

Since the world isn't perfect, we make do, and the best methods of a quick, painless execution - such as dropping a 70 ton block of concrete on a criminal - are usually too messy for polite folks to witness.

Anonymous said...

Fly the condemned 400 miles offshore, dump them off the ramp with parachute, then it's up to nature. No killing, no witnesses, no Monday morning quarterbacking about how long or how botched the execution was. Condemned who are realists will decline the parachute.
Progs can't object because it's recycling at its best; ashes to ashes, dust to fish food.
Lt. Col. Gen. Tailgunner dick

Anonymous said...

In one of Robert Heinlein's books, he wrote of a society that punished wrong-doers with a judicial infliction of EXACTLY the same crime they had committed. The example given was a man who had hit a pedestrian, causing the necessary amputation of one leg. The state had him laid out on the same stretch of highway, a car driven over his leg, made him lay there the same amount of time the victim had, and then took him to hospital to have his leg amputated. I daresay this would deter quite a number of crimes if this was applied here.

Anonymous said...

I have trouble feeling sorry for these guys who undergo an execution that is somehow "botched". After all, they had no sympathy for their victims while they were killing him or her or them. If those criminals and their apologist want sympathy, they can find it in their Funk and Wagnall's between shit and syphilis.

After the Civil War, Arkansas had a judge named Isaac Parker, aka "The Hanging Judge". If he sentenced someone to death, usually withing 24 to 48 hours later, that guy was swinging at the end of a rope. No endless appeals, no whining by bleeding heart liberals, no bullshit letters in the newspapers about what a nice guy he is, and, for damn sure, no 25 years after conviction and sentencing to the actual execution of lying around living off the taxpayer in relative comfort. Juts a short walk from the courtroom to the gallows. That should be the norm today.


Anonymous said...

Old testament (and present day middle east) stonings were done so that no single member of the community could be singled out as the executioner. No rocks bigger than a fist, etc so the whole community had to participate and the whole community was the executioner. No angst over who dealt the fatal blow because everybody contributed. If the crime was a threat to society, society dealt the punishment.

molonlabe28 said...

Executing or jailing someone who is innocent is always a risk.

I think that our country has a very good track record on not making mistakes.

Granted, there have been some, but there have also been innumerable instances of guilty parties walking free due to lack of admissable evidence.

And no one ever, ever seems to worry about families who have received no justice, after many years, with respect to their loved ones who were murdered.

I like Judge Kozinski - I see him at Federalist Society meetings when I can muster up the funds to attend them.

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