Punishment, or a chance at life?

While reading The Green Mile by Stephen King, it really raised my attention about the death penalty, as well as punishment for hardcore criminals. I know most of the U.S currently no longer uses the electric chair as a method of the death penalty, but lethal injection. Here’s a bit of background history; the physicians in Germany gave us the idea of this alternative, using lethal injection as part of the Nazi euthanasia program to kill off the country’s physically and mentally disabled children and adults, but later adopted the poison gas technique as lethal injection became to expensive. In 1977, pastor and legislator Bill Wiseman and Jay Chapman, State’s medical examiner, tried to adopt a method of execution that was less grotesque than electrocution; though lethal injection was first used in 1982 in the U.S. Though less gruesome than the electric chair, it’s proven to be far from painless.

To receive the death penalty, you have to have committed a crime to be so terrible. Some people don’t believe that the death penalty is an appropriate punishment, thinking it’s cruel; while others believe that these people deserve the anticipation and fear of death that’s coming to them, and don’t care how painful it is, due to the cruel nature of the criminal. I stand to be one of the people who believes in the death penalty, to an extent and degree. Let me explain my reasoning.

People who commit crimes such as murder, rape, and other gruesome acts that cause an innocent persons’ life to end and cause utter sadness to the victims’ family, deserve to be put to death themselves. In prison, they have a chance to pursue an education, to earn the chance of relationships, do certain activities that make them feel satisfied and content, as well as eating well. Though prison clearly has its downfalls, it comes down to a single point; they still have a CHANCE. Why should these people who ended someones opportunity at life in a defying way, get a chance at life themselves? Because some people think that these twisted, sick human beings can miraculously change into someone who does great things for the world? Most likely not. If the crime is gruesome enough, they should be sentenced to death, within a time period. I believe these people deserve the fear of anticipation of death for what they have done to someone who did not deserve their life to end, which ended in a way worse than the death penalty.

However, doing research upon this subject has led me to discover some facts that I don’t necessarily agree with. When researchers examined post-mortem blood levels of anesthetic, they believe that 90% of cases prisoners were able to feel pain, and 40% of them have been conscious. On top of that, doctors and nurses are prohibited to assist in such executions, by healthcare professionals’ ethical guidelines, so these drugs are administered through a vein by non-professionals. What?

In the Stephen King book I mentioned earlier, there is a part where a prison guard purposely didn’t follow execution protocol to have the death of the criminal as painful as possible. Knowing that their is an audience during executions, this type of negligence should be avoided by all means possible; not only for the criminals’ sake, but also for the audience, it can cause trauma and fear. The system should be as professional as possible when conducting executions, so everything can go smoothly. The anticipation the criminal fears is enough; no need to make the situation disastrous by neglecting to provide a professional.

If you know the routine of lethal injection, you should be aware that the criminal should go unconscious when his system gets paralyzed and goes into cardiac arrest by such a large dose. Well, sometimes they don’t; maybe it’s karma, or negligence caused by the person who administers the injection. Whatever it is, they need to find a solution to fix this issue.

Also, there should be accurate evidence that leads to the person who committed the crime to be put upon death row. If there is hole in the case, we shouldn’t risk an innocent persons life. Simple as that. Their is too many flaws in the system, and we should start making accurate changes to stop putting innocent lives at risk.