Skip to main content

lethal injection, death penalty
We have met the barbarian and he is us:
The United Nations human rights office on Friday condemned the bungled and chaotic execution of an Oklahoma death-row inmate, which left him thrashing on the gurney during a chaotic process that lasted nearly two hours.
To be clear: Lockett was convicted of a horrific crime. There doesn't seem to be much question of his guilt. This was not a nice guy. But this is not a question about what type of person Clayton Lockett was, it's a question of what type of people we want to be.
"The suffering of Clayton Lockett during his execution in Oklahoma on Tuesday, 29 April, may amount to cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment according to international human rights law," said Rupert Colville, spokesman for the UN high commissioner for human rights.

Colville said that the execution also appeared to run counter to the US constitution, which bars "cruel and unusual punishment". He told reporters: "The prolonged death of Clayton Lockett is the second case of apparent extreme suffering caused by malfunctioning lethal injections reported in 2014 in the United States," referring to the case of Dennis McGuire, executed in Ohio in January with an allegedly untested combination of drugs.

Please read below the fold for more on this story.

I wrote about the Ohio execution in January. In that case, ghoulish Ohio Assistant Attorney General Thomas Madden shrugged it off, saying the convicted killer "wasn't 'entitled to a pain-free execution'."

Let's also be clear about why this is happening:

States have been struggling to find the drugs to carry out lethal injections, with two key shortages stemming from objections made by European companies or officials.
Europe won't sell the drugs needed to execute people, so states are desperately trying to find alternative means. Because it's so important to keep killing people. Despite there being no evidence that executions deter criminals.

According to Amnesty International, these are the countries that executed people in 2013, in order of number of executions:

China, Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, United States, Somalia, Sudan, Yemen, Japan, Viet Nam, Taiwan, Indonesia, Kuwait, South Sudan, Nigeria, Palestinian Authority (Gaza), Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Malaysia, Botswana, India, North Korea
Sterling company, and the U.S. rates fifth among them. And despite the lack of evidence that executions deter crime, with European suppliers of the necessary poisons refusing to enable the barbarity, states that still execute are so desperate to continue the barbarity that they're experimenting with ever more barbaric means of doing so.

Originally posted to Laurence Lewis on Fri May 02, 2014 at 11:43 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site