In recent years, the United States has witnessed numerous challenges to capital punishment on the basis of the method (lethal injection) being cruel and unusual punishment. I have no interest in arguing over the maximum appropriate threshold of pain during an execution; the courts are already providing guidance on that matter.
In fact, I tend to be suspicious of the death penalty because people are idiots and juries are made out of people. Courtroom arguments have to be made at the average idiot’s comprehension level and that doesn’t exactly bode well for getting a good result. I’ve even faced questioning for jury duty and one lawyer was clearly trying to screen education out of the jury pool.
But that’s beside the point. As long as we have a death penalty, it ought to be performed within the bounds of common human decency. With that in mind, I would like to propose several alternatives to lethal injection that would give convicts more of a warm and fuzzy feeling on their way out of this world:
1- Bring the convict to a garage. Start up a car and close the garage door. People die like this at home all the time without realizing how much carbon monoxide is building up, at least until they find themselves looking up from a very comfortable coffin.
2- The guillotine was quick, effective, and cheap. I cannot overemphasize “cheap” because so many states still face budgetary problems.
3- We all know that the appeals process can take decades. We also know that bacon flavored desserts have become immensely popular. Because of this, I suggest placing convicts on a strict diet of bacon grease ice cream from the moment they reach death row. If the conviction is overturned, they can be given free medical care; if not, their heart attack should arrive by the time their legal journey ends.
4- Marijuana, LSD, crystal meth, booze. All at once. If you’re clueless enough to kill people, you’re probably clueless enough to think that this execution method sounds like a party.
5- Toss convicts from the Empire State Building and turn the event into a carnival. People could place wagers on how far the blood will splatter and in which direction. Guards could even paint a bull’s eye on the ground and play a game in which the convict tries to land on it.
As you can see, there’s no good reason to continue with the ever-so-controversial drug cocktails being delivered by way of a nasty little syringe. Until such time as we eliminate irrevocable punishments that could be wrong, we ought to at least have a little fun with them. “Fun,” by definition, cannot be cruel and unusual punishment.
And please pass me a bacon doughnut.