America’s Death Penalty Is Barbaric


 

By Mary Hamer

04 February, 2013
Countercurrents.org

*PURPOSE: The purpose of this paper is to discuss the Barbaric nature of America’s Death Penalty. I will give examples of several Death Row prisoner’s Executions to illustrate the Savage & Sadistic nature of Capital Punishment.

* MISSION STATEMENT: This essay is an attempt to get close to the Truth about the United States ‘ Death Penalty. I will give examples of American Executions including a case of a botched Florida Lethal injection & a botched Florida Electrocution. This paper is Not about Condemning President Obama’s, Congress’s & American citizens’ policy on Capital Punishment, but rather this essay Is about exposing the Truth about the Revengeful, expensive & irrational Death Penalty.

*KEY SECTIONS: The Key Sections of this paper are: I. Lethal Injection. II. Electrocution. III. Asphyxiation. IV. Hanging. V. Firing Squad.

I. FLORIDA ‘S BOTCHED LETHAL INJECTION of ANGEL DIAZ. 2006.

Execution : “Lethal injection executions generally end within 15 minutes, with the inmate unconscious after the first 3-5 minutes; Diaz’s took 34 (min.), and he was conscious for at least the first 25. A spokesperson for the Florida Department of Corrections initially claimed that Diaz felt no pain during the execution, but a coroner’s investigation (contradicted) that claim.” What Went Wrong: “Lethal injection ordinarily begins with the intravenous injection of pentothol, which purportedly brings about a coma and makes the effects of later drugs painless. The trouble is that the needle went through Diaz’ vein and into soft tissue deep in his arm, making the injection itself excruciating and possibly preventing the pentothol from taking effect. Tortured to Death: “Eyewitness reports indicate that Diaz was still moving and attempting to speak (or, perhaps, scream) more than twenty minutes into the execution, suggesting that he was still conscious and in pain. … His death was almost certainly slow and excruciatingly painful–and with his body frozen by the pavulon, he would have had no way of expressing that pain.” (1)

II. FLORIDA ‘S BOTCHED ELECTROCUTION of ALLEN LEE DAVIS. 1999. “Before he was pronounced dead … the Blood from his mouth had poured onto the collar of his white shirt, and the blood on his chest had spread to about the size of a dinner plate, even oozing through the buckle holes on the leather chest strap holding him to the chair.” A. His execution was the first in Florida’s new electric chair, built especially so it could accommodate a man Davis’s size (approximately 350 pounds). Later, when another Florida death row inmate challenged the constitutionality of the electric chair, Florida Supreme Court Justice Leander Shaw commented that “the color photos of Davis depict a man who — for all appearances — was brutally tortured to death by the citizens of Florida.” B. Justice Shaw also described the botched executions of Jesse Tafero and Pedro Medina (q.v.), calling the three executions “Barbaric spectacles” and “acts more befitting a Violent murderer than a Civilized state.” C. Justice Shaw included pictures of Davis’s dead body in his opinion. D. The execution was witnessed by a Florida State Senator, Ginny Brown-Waite, who at first was “shocked” to see the blood, until she realized that the blood was forming the shape of a cross and that it was a message from God saying he supported the execution.E. (2) To Florida State Senator Brown-Waite: Why didn’t the blood-shaped cross on Mr. Davis’ shirt signify God’s Condemnation of Florida’s Death Penalty?

* ALABAMA ‘S ELECTROCUTION of JOHN EVANS: 1983.

“ In 1983, the electrocution of John Evans in Alabama was described by an eyewitness as follows:” “At 8:30 p.m. the first jolt of 1900 volts of electricity passed through Mr. Evans’ body. It lasted thirty seconds. Sparks and flames erupted … from the electrode tied to Mr. Evans’ left leg. His body slammed against the straps holding him in the electric chair and his fist clenched permanently. The electrode apparently burst from the strap holding it in place. A large puff of grayish smoke and sparks poured out from under the hood that covered Mr. Evans’ face. An overpowering stench of burnt flesh and clothing began pervading the witness room. Two doctors examined Mr. Evans and declared that he was not dead.” “The electrode on the left leg was re-fastened. …Mr. Evans was administered a second … jolt of electricity. The stench of burning flesh was nauseating. More smoke emanated from his leg and head. Again, the doctors examined Mr. Evans. [They] reported that his heart was still beating, and that he was still alive. At that time, I asked the prison commissioner, who was communicating on an open telephone line to Governor George Wallace, to grant clemency on the grounds that Mr. Evans was being subjected to Cruel and unusual punishment. The request …was denied.” “At 8:40 p.m., a third charge of electricity … was passed through Mr. Evans’ body. At 8:44, the doctors pronounced him dead. The execution of John Evans took fourteen minutes.” Afterwards, officials were embarrassed by what one observer called the “Barbaric ritual.” The prison spokesman remarked, “This was supposed to be a very clean manner of administering death.” (3)

III. GAS CHAMBER, ASPHYXIATION: The introduction of the gas chamber was an attempt to improve on electrocution. In this method of execution the prisoner is strapped into a chair with a container of sulfuric acid underneath. The chamber is sealed, and cyanide is dropped into the acid to form a lethal gas. Execution by suffocation in the lethal gas chamber has not been abolished but lethal injection serves as the primary method in states which still authorize it. In 1996 a panel of judges on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in California (where the gas chamber has been used since 1933) ruled that this method is a “cruel and unusual punishment.” (4)

* ARIZONA ASPHYXIATION: Donald Eugene Harding. 1992. Death was not pronounced until 10 & ½ minutes after the cyanide tablets were dropped A. During the execution, Haring thrashed & struggled violently against the restraining straps. A TV journalist who witnessed the execution … said that Harding’s spasms & jerks lasted 6 min. & 37 sec.. “Obviously, this man was suffering. This was a violent death … an ugly event.” B. Another witness, (a) newspaper reporter … said “Harding’s death was extremely violent. He was in great pain. I heard him gasp & moan. I saw his body turn from red to purple.” C. One reporter who witnessed the execution suffered from insomnia & assorted illnesses for several weeks, two others were ‘Walking vegetables’ for several days.” D. (5)

*MISSISSIPPI ASPHYXIATION. Jimmy Lee Gray. 1983. “Officials had to clear the room eight minutes after the gas was released when Gray’s desperate gasps for air repulsed witnesses. His attorney, Dennis Balske of Montgomery, Alabama, criticized state officials for clearing the room when the inmate was still alive. Said noted death penalty defense attorney David Bruck, ‘Jimmy Lee Gray died banging his head against a steel pole in the gas chamber while the reporters counted his moans (eleven, according to the Associated Press).’ A. Later it was revealed that the executioner, Barry Bruce, was drunk.” B. (6)

IV. HANGING: “ The (historical) mode of execution, hanging , is an option still available in Delaware , New Hampshire and Washington . Death on the gallows is easily bungled: If the drop is too short, there will be a slow and agonizing death by strangulation. If the drop is too long, the head will be torn off.” (7)

V. FIRING SQUAD: “ Two states, Idaho and Utah, still authorize the firing squad . The prisoner is strapped into a chair and hooded. A target is pinned to the chest. Five marksmen, one with blanks, take aim and fire.” (8)

*CONCLUSION: America ‘s Death Penalty is Barbaric. President Obama, Congress & the American citizens are Responsible for these Savage Executions of human beings. Americans Sadistically support & witness these Cruel acts of Lethal injections, Electrocutions, Asphyxiations, etc.. Homo Sapiens are a Violent & Evil species. I, Mary Hamer withdraw my name from the Human race; I do not condone such brutal acts of Murder conducted in the name of the US Criminal justice system & American Freedom & Democracy.

Thank you. Respectfully, Mary Hamer MD. Florida , a Death Penalty state.

REFERENCES:

1. The Execution of Angel Nieves Diaz . By Tom Head. civilliberty.about.com › … › Crimes & Punishments › Capital Punishment .

2. Some Examples of Post-Furman Botched Executions | Death … www.deathpenaltyinfo.org/some-examples-post-furman- botched exe … Referencing: A. Davis Execution Gruesome , GAINESVILLE SUN, July 8, 1999 , at 1A. B. Provenzano v. State, 744 So.2d 413, 440 (Fla. 1999). C. Id. D. Id., at 442-44. E. Mary Jo Melone, A Switch is Thrown, and God Speaks , ST. PETERSBURG TIMES, July 13, 1999, p. 1B.

3. The Case Against the Death Penalty – American Civil Liberties Union www.aclu.org › Capital Punishment .

4. The Case Against the Death Penalty – American Civil Liberties Union www.aclu.org › Capital Punishment .

5. Some Examples of Post-Furman Botched Executions | Death … www.deathpenaltyinfo.org/some-examples-post-furman- botched exe … A.Gruesome Death in Gas Chamber Pushes Arizona Toward Injections , N.Y. TIMES, Apr. 25, 1992, at 9. B. Charles L. Howe, Arizona Killer Dies in Gas Chamber , S.F. CHRON., Apr. 7, 1992, at A2. C. Id. D. Abraham Kwok, Injection: The No-Fuss Executioner , ARIZONA REPUBLIC, Feb. 28, 1993.

6. Some Examples of Post-Furman Botched Executions | Death … www.deathpenaltyinfo.org/some-examples-post-furman- botched exe…Referencing : A. David Bruck, Decisions of Death , THE NEW REPUBLIC, Dec. 12, 1984 , at 24-25. B . Ivan Solotaroff, The Last Face You’ll Ever See , 124 ESQUIRE 90, 95 (Aug. 1995).

7. The Case Against the Death Penalty – American Civil Liberties Union www.aclu.org › Capital Punishment .

8. [ The Case Against the Death Penalty – American Civil Liberties Union www.aclu.org › Capital Punishment .]

 

Is £624 the price of a rape victim’s anonymity? #Vaw #Justice


Joan Smith, The Independent

Tuesday 6 November 2012

Some friends and supporters of Ched Evans wrote the name of the woman he raped on Twitter – all they got was a measly fine.

What merits the more severe penalty – tweeting abuse about an unconscious man who is unaware of it or publicly naming a victim of sexual violence?

Two days ago, yet another case involving abuse on social networking sites came to court and the outcome – paltry fines for a group of defendants – demonstrates the jaw-dropping inconsistency of the criminal justice system. The case also speaks volumes about hostile attitudes towards victims of sexual violence in this country.

In March this year, the Bolton Wanderers footballer Fabrice Muamba collapsed on the pitch during an FA Cup match at White Hart Lane. He was rushed to hospital in east London, where medical staff battled for hours to save his life. Muamba eventually recovered though not, sadly, to a point where he was able to return to playing football. On the afternoon of his collapse, a drunken student called Liam Stacey from South Wales mocked Muamba and posted “racially aggravated” abuse on Twitter. In no time, Stacey was arrested, charged and sentenced to 56 days in prison, as well as being banned from his course at Swansea University for the rest of the year. Stacey’s behaviour was callous and unthinking but even at the time the penalty seemed out of proportion to the damage he’d actually done.

The following month, the Wales and Sheffield United footballer Ched Evans was sent to prison for five years for a very nasty rape. His 19-year-old victim showed enormous courage when she reported the assault, which happened in a hotel room in Rhyl at the end of an evening when she had been drinking heavily. According to Nita Dowell, senior crown prosecutor in Wales, Evans “took advantage of a vulnerable woman who was in no fit state to consent to sexual activity. He did so knowingly and with a total disregard for her physical and emotional wellbeing”. Detective Chief Inspector Steve Williams said the victim had shown “a great deal of resilience and strength in difficult circumstances”.

But footballers are celebrities, and the court’s view of Evans’s criminal behaviour was certainly not shared by his friends and supporters. They rushed on to Twitter and Facebook to vent their rage, not against the man who’d let them and his club down so badly but against his victim. Unlike Muamba, who was in hospital and receiving the best medical care when Stacey abused him, the young woman in the Evans case was trying to recover from the gruelling experience of a rape trial. She was obviously vulnerable but the defendants didn’t care, using social networking sites to name her and abuse her as a “slut”, a “tramp” and a “whore”.

Rape victims are entitled to lifelong anonymity and nine individuals appeared in court on Monday, accused of publishing material likely to lead members of the public to identify the complainant in a rape case. District judge Andrew Shaw did not mince his words, telling the defendants at Prestatyn magistrates court that they had acted with “deliberate malice”. He said: “Your actions have revictimised this woman.” He imposed the maximum penalty on each of them, but that’s only a £624 fine.

If Stacey’s behaviour towards an unconscious Muamba merits a prison sentence, why is this offence treated so leniently? One of the tweets, posted by 26-year-old Paul Devine from Sheffield, not only named the woman but urged strangers to find her address. Surely, that’s intimidation? In court, Devine said he was angry because his team Sheffield United had just lost to MK Dons. Presumably, he thought the team would have played better with a convicted rapist in its ranks, but it’s hardly an excuse for what he did.

Holly Price, a 25-year-old biology teacher from Prestatyn, is another of the individuals who named the victim on Twitter. She retweeted a message which revealed the woman’s identity and added her own comment: “money-grabbing slut. poor little victim. WTF?” The defendants were sheepish in court and apologised, claiming they had no idea that naming a rape victim was a criminal offence. That doesn’t address the obvious point that it’s morally indefensible, whatever the law says.

What were these people thinking of? At a moment when the country is reeling under a torrent of accusations about child sexual abuse linked to Jimmy Savile, it’s instructive to get a glimpse into the thought processes of members of the public reacting to the outcome of a rape trial.  Convictions are not easy to secure, as campaigners against sexual violence know very well, and, in this case, Evans had been found guilty and given a condign sentence. Yet blaming the complainant is so reflexive that the defendants simply ignored the verdict.

This is not the only instance of this kind of behaviour in recent history. The two women who have accused Julian Assange of rape and sexual assault have been hounded on the internet. Something similar happened to the woman who accused the former head of the IMF, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, of attempted rape in a New York hotel. The charges were dropped and the politician is now back in France, where he faces charges relating to a prostitution ring in Lille.

Abuse of women who say they’ve been raped is habitual, in other words, and the effect of social networking sites is to make it more overt. Over and over again, research shows that fear of being blamed acts as a deterrent when women are deciding whether to seek help or go to the police. In a survey carried out this year by the website Mumsnet, more than four-fifths of respondents who said they’d been raped did not report the attack, and over half gave embarrassment or shame as the reason. Another report, compiled for The Haven service for victims of assault in London, found that more than half of respondents would be too ashamed or embarrassed to go to the police.

This is why the offences committed in the Ched Evans case are worse, in my view, than Liam Stacey’s drunken abuse of Fabrice Muamba. I’m not in favour of sending more people to prison but I’d like to see heavier penalties for naming rape victims, perhaps in the form of community service with organisations that help victims of sexual violence. This “naming and shaming” of women who say they’ve been raped is a form of terrorism, and it has to stop.

Twitter: @polblonde