I take pride in being from Ohio. I do not take any in whatever abstract anti-intellectualism brought about the superfluous means in which a Capital Sentence was carried out. Below Please find the Letter I chose to write the Attorney General's Office as to the means and way Mr. Maguire met his sentence yesterday. I do not mourn the man but I do mourn the callous manner in which the wisdom of other states, and the rule of law seems void as well as the lack of consideration to a higher duty as Attorneys and Human Beings for Consideration before we inflict pains we will never know. For or against the Death Sentence any should agree that as the Supreme Court has implored us Human Dignity is the main consideration and we took not only that man's breath, dignity and life, because . . . we ran out of the things we need to kill? That is not good enough for me so see below.
PS if anyone has his email address please let me know. I only see a physical one.
Please see this link as to the story.
(Note Mr. Madden is the individual quoted as saying more or less "Pain is Fine" Also please note I have not extensively read briefs and all the below even if stated otherwise is my opinion even if factually documented I mean to relay opinion)
Dear Mr. Madden:
I write you regarding your zealous representation on behalf of the State of Ohio regarding the execution by untested means of Dennis McGuire.
In being sworn in the head of your office made clear that “What the Attorney General owes to the Governor and all other statewide office holders is good judgment and wise counsel. What the Attorney General owes to the people of Ohio, as I pledged in my oath, is to seek the truth and to seek justice,” DeWine said in his remarks. http://ohioattorneygeneral.gov/....
Do you believe you have sought justice or truth in bringing about this man’s unnecessary suffering. Has the citizenry been strengthened by your statements that one is “NOT entitled to a pain free execution”. Unfortunately, the Supreme Court of the United States has disagreed. As a man who is in office to seek Justice, this botched execution comes as a blemish to my pride as an Ohioan and raises great ethical questions about the purposes and responsibilities of execution
Whatever the man did, our framers decided to include the eighth amendment to keep you, me, our families and the departed (whatever his crimes) free of a cruel and unusual punishment.
You present that your office seeks justice and truth. Yet the blistering ignorance of the insinuation that suffering must attach with no demarcation is beyond the pale we as attorneys hold ourselves to; let alone what I would hope the state may in its aspirational pursuit of “Justice”. OK I don’t get this sentence.
Your statements, I hope not authorized, are to me inconsistent with Eight Amendment Jurisprudence. I realize the certain irony in separating the matter of cruelty from the instance of death but we must respect the Supreme Court’s wisdom that how we choose to take such a drastic act must not be "inconsistent with evolving standards of decency that mark the progress of a maturing society." Baze v. Rees, 553 U.S. 35, 62 (2008).
As a Citizen and someone who considers this abhorrent, with the hopes my State’s officials will avoid such a torturous event I hope you do not forget what wisdom we can draw from. The Supreme Court has acknowledged that the Eighth Amendment does bar some methods, and acknowledges that in fact a respect of human dignity is of crucial import in making a determination. While the Supreme Court does not and likely cannot state a level of pain as such an aloof concept, it’s disregard is beneath us and at least we do have some consideration, allowance for some self control from the many cases discussed including Furman v. Georgia, 408 U.S. 238 (1972), Justice Brennan wrote, "There are, then, four principles by which we may determine whether a particular punishment is 'cruel and unusual'."
• The "essential predicate" is "that a punishment must not by its severity be degrading to human dignity," especially torture.
• "A severe punishment that is obviously inflicted in wholly arbitrary fashion." (Furman v. Georgia temporarily suspended capital punishment for this reason.)
• "A severe punishment that is clearly and totally rejected throughout society."
We are expected to be a society of evolving standards. Not one of blatant disregard to our increasing sense of humane action even as to executions: [the Amendment must draw its meaning from the evolving standards of decency that mark the progress of a maturing society." The Supreme Court has ruled in the past that certain punishments involving "torture or a lingering death" cross the line into cruel and unusual; we no longer practice "burning at the stake, crucifixion, [and] breaking on the wheel." 23 Trop v. Dulles, 356 U.S. 86, 100 (1958). 23. In re Kemmler, 136 U.S. 436, 446 (1890).
I believe progress and understanding our limitations and abilities is not something we should disregard for Retributivism. This man should not, nomatter how compelling your legal argument laid on slab, with forgiveness from the family in heart and be subjected to a pain we will never know.
As a Citizen I can say that the risk that a man would lie and experience "unnecessary
and wanton infliction of pain does not comport with the progress I believe in. I hope that you agree and that your office swiftly investigates how your argument led to this. Should there be a lack of regret I would ask what that means about us as people, when the victim’s family itself could forgive. What it means about the qualification and intent that went into this legal battle.
Is the picture of a man experiencing “Air Hunger” for 20 minutes within our societal aspirations? Is the message of the certainty of such a torturous death being alright due to how you chose to read what pain we can inflict a progress we consider wisdom?
Ignorance is simply no excuse. It frightens me the seeming haste that decisions were made simply because we did not have our normal drugs to kill. This is not new. US Courts of note have considered and stopped similar procedures because of the exact risks of the deplorable torture your office took part in as that is the simple truth. With a life in your hands the Eight Amendment has been crossed. See Morales v. Hickman, 438 F.3d at 931 (considering exactly the risk of “Air Hunger”).
We are not a Society of vindictive bumper-sticker statements to appease those most blood-thirsty. At least I hope that our standards as human being have evolved beyond as we have recognized that we are beyond many methods of “humane deaths”.
I question then why such a message would be sent. One of anti-intellectualism and pure draconian desire. “Pain is fine”. Was it tempered by deep consideration of Morales? Of what it is to respect and live in a Country with a rule of law, with disregard to the pressures to advocate swift death sentences despite real concerns glossed over even when perhaps our higher duties would say that prudence should be allowed to avert such barbarism?
I only know that at the moment there that cruelty occurred despite the warnings. As ab Ohioan and Lawyer and I hope you will agree with me that even without stare decisis we should strive for more. I believe in a State and Country that even those most vehemently hated are free from simply following orders to a more humane calling avoiding such an abhorrent death. At least we may learn, your office, our state from what has occurred and I hope strive to be better than who we are as who we showed ourselves to be is simply intolerable. I hope that all involved explore their culpability and take those steps necessary to preserve the dignity of their offices. As Citizens if we are not free from “pain in death” we should be free from “fear in the protection of our Constitutional rights.