On September 21, 2011 at 11:08pm, Troy Davis was executed in the state of Georgia by lethal injection. To see the details of the case, click here. I could go on for DAYS, WEEKS, MONTHS about what is so fundamentally, socially, morally wrong in the Troy Davis case, but I wont. I will simply say that the only to avoid another situation like this is to eliminate the death penalty altogether.
I will try my damndest not to go on a teary-eyed rant regarding my feelings about racial disparities and the judicial system. I'll try to focus on one aspect of this situation (my issues with the death penalty) and, although I am not a proponent of capital punishment, I wont focus on all of the gross examples of "well,why Troy Davis and not so-and-so?" I won't mention the Sean Bell case. God, please help me to hold my tongue about Casey Anthony. I'll stick to the broader issue: Why do Americans feel that it is "humane" to execute another human being? Execute. That word. I just...can't.
A few facts:
Approximately 120 people have been exonerated from death row due to serious holes in the prosecution with at least one dozen of those cases being the result of DNA evidence.
There have been reported cases of botched executions, including the most "humane" method - lethal injection. One of the drugs used in lethal injection executions has been banned for use on animals for fear that it masks rather that relieved pain. This idea of a peaceful sleeplike death is untrue!
Due to medical ethics doctors are forbidden from conducting executions, which many times leaves prison staff and orderlies to perform this function...not cool, not smart, unsafe.
Until the 1980's the electric chair was the primary method of execution, however it is still used; the last electric chair execution took place in 2002 in Alabama. 2000 volts of electricity, internal body temperatures reaching upwards of 140 degrees Fahrenheit, reports of prisoners catching on fire, defecating, eyes gouging and resting on the cheeks, and vomiting blood can hardly be considered humane.
The news of Troy Davis' execution sent me into an uncontrollable crying spell and a deep sadness over the lack of compassion for this man. Let alone the lack of evidence. It made me question the fundamentals of our judicial system. It made me want to ensure that this does not happen to another person.