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Letter: We should reconsider using firing squads

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Posted: Wednesday, August 20, 2014 12:00 am

Judge Alex Kozinski started an interesting discussion — returning of the firing squad executions. If we have the death penalty, it should not take 25 years to confirm that a person is guilty, while they are getting special treatment in prison at our expense. There have been complaints about the gas chamber and now about lethal injection being inhumane.

Utah was the last state to use the firing squad. They stopped because of all the bad publicity that came to the state. There was a media circus, a Wild West side show. The news reporters’ focus went from the criminal, his crime and victim to the execution method. The 1996 execution of John Taylor drew nearly 150 television crews, including reporters from other countries.

Were there anywhere near that number for San Quentin executions? Go to Google for Utah firing squads. The International Justice Project is a wealth of information regarding how the squads operated and background information. A group of five would shoot, two with blanks, so no one knew which were which.

Sounds like a good idea to me, if we continue the death penalty.

Warren Potts


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