In March 2015, Utah lawmakers approved the
use of firing squads to execute death row inmates. This comes after lethal injection
drugs were discontinued in 2011, when the drug’s only manufacturer left the US. Since
then, states have been scrambling to find a humane, painless, and efficient execution
method. So we wanted to find out… What is the most humane method of execution? How humane one method is compared to another
is highly debated, but a widely cited 1993 study examined executions from around the
world to find out how painful each method was. They wrote that although most people
assume capital punishment is instantaneous and painless, in nearly every case, the opposite
is usually true. Firing squads can be considered a fast and
effective alternative to injections, but according to the Royal Commission on Capital Punishment,
being shot is not an efficient method because it does not guarantee immediate death. Additionally,
those subject to a firing squad are likely to feel pain during the time it takes to bleed
out. Hangings are supposed to work by quickly fracturing
and dislocating the neck. The 1993 study notes that often prisoners will grimace and shake
violently, which are clear signs of distress. However, this could also be due to spinal
reflexes – since hangings are supposed to sever the nervous system and prevent pain.
But, consider that the heart can take up to 20 minutes to stop beating after a person
is hung, and the brain is still able to process sensory signals from above the neck. Although
it is efficient, it’s likely not humane. Electrocution used to be a popular method
in the United States throughout the 20th century. One of the biggest problems was that since
electrocution works by essentially “cooking” the brain and internal organs, survival can
be excruciatingly painful. Nebraska was the only state left to exclusively offer the electric
chair, before deciding it was “cruel and unusual” in 2008.
Gassing is problematic because most people who are gassed tend to hold their breath,
which unnecessarily lengthens the time it takes to die. Scientists have pointed towards
hyperventilation, vomiting, and headaches as possible distressing reactions.
Finally, we’re left with intravenous injections. Although firing squads have a higher success
rate, IVs are considered much more humane. The body is dosed with an anesthetic, then
a muscle relaxant which causes respiratory failure, followed by a drug to stop the heart.
However, since the anesthetic has been discontinued, several attempts at lethal injection have
failed. During a recent Oklahoma execution, the prisoner moaned and tried to speak throughout,
and died of a heart attack 43 minutes after the failed injection.
So what’s the least painful way to enforce capital punishment? Science points towards
lethal injections as the best of the worst. But without the necessary drugs, the US may
be forced to decide whether it is willing to continue killing prisoners if the methods
available are inhumane. So are lethal injections really that great,
or do they fall into the “cruel and unusual” category? To learn more about the issue, take
a look at this video we made. To
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and thanks as always for watching!

100 thoughts on “Is Firing Squad More Ethical Than Lethal Injection?”

  1. The Chinese just blow ya heart out, point blank, from behind with 7.62 X 39 round, whilst two others hold you spread eagle on ya knees. Kaboom……….job done.

  2. I think if they don't make it so death sentence is out of the question they should blindfold the prisoner and have someone have a gun held on their head at their brain. 1 shot is all it will take a lnd it's painless. Ya it's pretty cruel but if they're looking for a quick and painless way to end a life, that's their best bet.

  3. Why don’t we use a guillotine.Its the most effective method.The combined gravity and sharpness of the blade kills instantly with no pain,and there is zero chance of survival for the simple fact that you can’t live without a head.

  4. Just ban it. I think that being in prison for Life already would work as punishment, also there are therapies for prisoners.

  5. with the firing squad they should just aim for the head. the bullet would destroy the brain faster than it can register pain. in the case of ronnie lee gardener they shot him in the chest using .30-30 rounds. a bullet that size would almost certainly turn the brain into goo

  6. I feel like if the person being executed has killed someone, they should kill the person being executed the way that they killed the person, if that makes sense

  7. What about the crimes they committed, is it ethical? Why does the government, state and media even some private citizens care so much about these criminals and not the victims and their families? Why worry or consider the human rights of these criminals? Didn't these criminals violated the human rights of their victims.? They must pay for their crimes. Plain and simple RETRIBUTION!!!

  8. I still say firing squad is best. It's quick and the only real failures are poor aim from 20 feet away or total weapon failure like a jam or round that doesn't fire. As for the pain part, it's hard to worry about the pain they feel given the fact the condemned didn't care about pain when they were committing the act. But I would change how the shots are conducted. 4 riflemen total. 2 aim at head, and 2 at heart. This way the heart no longer works, and the condemned is killed instantly by brain death. Only 2 rifles have actual bullets (.223 round is probably best), the other 2 have blanks and all guns are loaded prior to the gun even going into the chamber and shooters arrive in chamber after the guns. The shooters step to their rifles where a card tells them where to aim. When the shots are fired, nobody knows who had a live round and therefore don't know who actually killed the condemned. The chair the condemned sits in is completely black or dark navy as is the jumpsuit they wear. This way the blood is as hidden as possible from those who need to view the execution.

  9. Simple , Use a Barrett
    50 BMG with a 660 grain cartridge.
    Aim at the head from 20 yards, 1 Shot, They will die and feel nothing.

  10. One could be against death penalty,but if it is the conviction choice, the pain shouldn't be a major concern,once the victims usually have suffered much more in the wide variety of cases.

  11. Since when should we care how painful it is for a maniac who has taken lives, raped and so on be? After a trial and if found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, the prisoner should be lead to an area behind the court house and face hanging, a guillotine or a firing squad. Save prison for the less violet criminals and eliminate those that have committed such horrific crimes. That’s my opinion anyway.

  12. What a stupid question! It is like asking what is heavier a ton of feathers or a ton of steel. Trying to determine the ethics of killing an inmate is a waste of time. I think the best way to kill an inmate is to do it without them knowing when it coming. I was pro death penalty until DNA testing started to free so many inmates from prison, also, death is too easy of a way out for some of the murdering scum. If some one raped my child, I would want them in a cell without a thing to do buy look at the walls.

  13. What about lack of oxygen? You will become dumb and not know what is happening. You will become hypoxic and just lose the oxygen in your system. You then Blackout and die. Painless and you can use current tech.

  14. I think being shot could be a humane way ,if their shot with more than one gun. And the caliber used is very large. But if we are going to be kind to a convicted murderer. Then we should use anesthesia to put them to sleep before we shoot them. I can't put my self in the victims place. But I do believe we should show compassion. Let GOD take vengeance on them ,if HE desires so. It's the job of the judicial system to protect society from people who kill and break laws. We have to set examples.

  15. Let's do firing squad but before you put him in the chair or right after putting him in the chair you give him a sedative so he is relaxed sleepy and doesn't feel any pain and then shoot him. Now you have the best of both worlds, a prisoner who is sedated and who dies quickly very very quickly.

  16. There's no humane way to kill someone, but who cares…so long as these murderous criminals get what they deserve…I say GO FOR IT

  17. I am not as interested in "how" we execute people as I am "who" we execute. Justice should be color blind, gender neutral and unaware of the convicted's social class. The manner of death I feel however should be something that the convicted fears, not the manner in which lethal injection allows them to expire.

  18. Side-stepping the whole issue of whether to have capital punishment: Lethal injection seems to be the choice, but is deterred by an engineered lack of the proper drugs by drug companies who do not want to be associated. States have made a mess of the process by using less effective drugs, or drugs for which inadequate information is available. They know what works and how to use it. Manufacturing such chemical compounds isn't difficult for a chemist, so I do not understand why the states trapped in this situation do not just form their own company to prepare what they need. My thoughts are that individual states do not want the publicity of being associated with making the drugs; they will use them in the privacy of a prison, but they do not want reporters showing up with TV cameras at some office/lab, asserting the public's right to know. They should prep their chems and be willing to do so openly, or give up capital punishment. This includes state legislators, who might challenge using state money to manufacture such drugs – do it or do not do it, but stop playing around.

  19. If you people who are pro death penalty and wants to shoot a criminal to death but thinks that it might be inhumane… Sedate the unlucky and then shoot him with 500 different machine guns

  20. The guillotine is cheap ,quick, painless and has a 0% failure rate nor can it be considered cruel and unusual compared to current methods.

  21. Nitrogen asphyxiation is 100 % effective lethality !!! You just need a airtight room or some sort of capasule. You don’t even need to strap them down to a gurney or a chair. They can just lay back and relax in a plush recliner. The condemned will simply just fall asleep peacefully and never wake up . This folks is a proven scientific fact as it has been observed accidentally of course at a isolated control room that removed all oxygen and pumped full of Nitrogen. Two workers tragically were not informed of the Gases exchange and subsequently died quickly with no stress evidenced.

  22. If you’re worried about pain of death row inmates, you forget the suffering of the victims family. Let them feel the pain they caused the victim and the agony of the family before they die

  23. Death penalty is gross,but it gives closure to the one' s left behind,family etc.also we tend to give capital punnishment to the worst repeat or mass killers,they often kill or main guards fellow inmates etc.tough one to decide.

  24. In China, they shoot the prisoner in the head, then they make his family pay the government for the bullet used!

  25. Bring back the Guillitine for executions. Chopping off someone's head to me is Instaneous as it renders the brain separated from the body & thus unable to detect any pain. But then again nobody has come back to render any feedback. LOL.

  26. Trying to find the most humane way to execute someone is horribly ironic because truly there is nothing humane about taking away another human life.

  27. Who cares? They killed someone and they didn’t care about how their victim felt, so why should the justice system care about how the murderers feel when justice is served?

  28. Lady, gilloteen decapitation execution and execution style shooting [put gun barrel at base of head, aim up and fire===instant death and no torture from lethal injection, hanging, electric chair or gas chamber.

  29. Why do they put so much work into a death just get a gun hold the inmate shot him in the head until he is dead

  30. Rule #1- never underestimate the evilness to be caused by humans who believe they are better, have been done wrong by, or believe they have the right to punish you.

  31. Because I've never had a loved one brutally murdered, I can't say whether I'm for execution or not. Maybe the punishment should fit the crime in extreme cases?

  32. Lethal injection seems to be too long and drawn out.
    What's this with inviting family members. Like a macabre circus.
    Hanging. Rope around the neck.
    Drop! The end!
    Just bloody well get on with it America!

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