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Is Firing Squad More Ethical Than Lethal Injection?


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
keep on top of everything happening in the world, please make sure to subscribe now,
and thanks as always for watching!

100 Comments

  1. Andrew Howard
    Andrew Howard March 25, 2018

    All the people on here calling for the most inhumane methods to be used need to get a grip. Whatever happens it’s not going to bring the original victim back. Take solace that if they get life in prison they will never be released and have to live with what they did for the rest of their lives. Taking a life for another life doesn’t make you any better.

  2. THEgamerguy54
    THEgamerguy54 March 25, 2018

    Why not shoot the head with a single shot

  3. Rayyan Jamal
    Rayyan Jamal April 4, 2018

    What about the Saudi way? Beheadings can't be that bad…right?

  4. bcmb02
    bcmb02 April 8, 2018

    Gullotine is the best method of execution

  5. Klenk
    Klenk April 15, 2018

    just knock them out with drugs and then shot em

  6. Xiaoran LI
    Xiaoran LI April 22, 2018

    Bullet to the head, cheap and simple and immediate death, why so over complicated?

  7. Roxana Lobo
    Roxana Lobo April 28, 2018

    At least the fastest way

  8. Peter Wallace
    Peter Wallace May 15, 2018

    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.

  9. Eddie Wilson
    Eddie Wilson May 17, 2018

    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.

  10. KotiChennayya
    KotiChennayya June 7, 2018

    Easiest way of execution is natural death

  11. Daniel
    Daniel June 8, 2018

    honestly you just need to put one bullet through the back of their head

  12. Fletcher DeMaine
    Fletcher DeMaine June 12, 2018

    Guys, explosive decompression. 100% effective and instant.

  13. Leor Greenfield
    Leor Greenfield July 3, 2018

    Texes uses a single drug of pentebarbetal

  14. frank cruz
    frank cruz July 12, 2018

    FIREING SQUAD ROCKS

  15. TeNgGiLinG
    TeNgGiLinG July 19, 2018

    the most humane way is to give life sentence instead of killing

  16. Malacki 655
    Malacki 655 July 21, 2018

    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.

  17. pain in the grASS
    pain in the grASS July 22, 2018

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

  18. Derek Wall
    Derek Wall July 24, 2018

    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

  19. Josiah DavisTv
    Josiah DavisTv July 30, 2018

    Cut their wrist it should be painless

  20. Bruno Pontecorvo
    Bruno Pontecorvo August 1, 2018

    Beheading?!?!?

  21. Konaa
    Konaa August 3, 2018

    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

  22. dvmcabanosjr
    dvmcabanosjr August 5, 2018

    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!!!

  23. Eric Smith
    Eric Smith August 5, 2018

    The .22 has been proven the most effective when administered to the back of the head by the mob

  24. Scott Miskowiak
    Scott Miskowiak August 10, 2018

    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.

  25. Veteran Patriot
    Veteran Patriot August 12, 2018

    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.

  26. Ivan Tanushev
    Ivan Tanushev August 13, 2018

    The best method is listening to Justin Bieber

  27. Irandi Silva
    Irandi Silva August 17, 2018

    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.

  28. Max Karlsson
    Max Karlsson August 17, 2018

    Giliotine

  29. Karl Swaringim
    Karl Swaringim August 19, 2018

    Public hangings in front of every courthouse

  30. Ray Singh
    Ray Singh August 21, 2018

    Why not try the “Death Coaster” or “Euthanasia Coaster” concept? That’d be fun.

  31. I Disappear
    I Disappear August 24, 2018

    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.

  32. Dog
    Dog August 25, 2018

    Lethal injection is expensive
    bullets are cheap
    rope is cheaper and reusable

  33. axer351
    axer351 August 31, 2018

    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.

  34. Grumpy Australian
    Grumpy Australian September 4, 2018

    I believe execution by Hypoxia could be the answer. See the series by Michael Portillo on death sentences.

  35. Rahim Qadery
    Rahim Qadery September 6, 2018

    stop execution

  36. Duke Skellington
    Duke Skellington September 7, 2018

    bomb vest

  37. Eric Frohlich
    Eric Frohlich September 7, 2018

    Wealthy people are never executed..only the poor and those with bad lawyers ! My opinion !

  38. Peter Pierce
    Peter Pierce September 9, 2018

    Shoot them while Hanging them while strapped in an electric chair.

  39. Alex Alexander
    Alex Alexander September 13, 2018

    Vietnam discontinued firing squads as inhumane

  40. FlecktarnRhodesian
    FlecktarnRhodesian September 14, 2018

    Its cheaper

  41. trevor coronesi
    trevor coronesi September 19, 2018

    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.

  42. Andrew Smith
    Andrew Smith September 19, 2018

    What about nitrogen asphyxiation?

  43. Alton Rowell
    Alton Rowell September 19, 2018

    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.

  44. Malacki 655
    Malacki 655 September 23, 2018

    Why don’t we just put a bullet in the back of their head then harvest their organs and blood for those in need?

  45. Diego Rodriguez
    Diego Rodriguez September 24, 2018

    did they have mercy on the person that they kill so why let them suffer they deserve that

  46. Anime God-Lennie James Mcbob
    Anime God-Lennie James Mcbob October 12, 2018

    Personally I’d prefer firing squad

  47. malwar21
    malwar21 November 2, 2018

    Beheading is the least painful and also the quickest.

  48. acajudi100
    acajudi100 November 3, 2018

    It is best to harvest their organs.

  49. MackenCat
    MackenCat November 3, 2018

    grab a chainsaw, cut the head off. Boom, dead.

  50. Tom Henderson
    Tom Henderson November 6, 2018

    Wouldn’t a 50 cal sniper one shot your head

  51. John Browning
    John Browning November 7, 2018

    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.

  52. mike cafano
    mike cafano November 9, 2018

    This woman is hoooooot….

  53. Kettle Bell Kyle
    Kettle Bell Kyle November 20, 2018

    Electric chair was always messed up .

  54. Marechal Zolotoy
    Marechal Zolotoy December 9, 2018

    Why a humane execution as an easy way out of a cruel and inhumane crime?
    Just kick them to death

  55. David Neiggemann
    David Neiggemann January 1, 2019

    A fate worse than death is isolation in a cell by yourself the rest of your life

  56. alcylon
    alcylon January 3, 2019

    USA sucks.

  57. Mike 369
    Mike 369 January 8, 2019

    I say do the same thing as you did 👍

  58. Caleb M. F
    Caleb M. F January 15, 2019

    Death is painful regardless… just shoot them in the back of the head.

  59. william miller
    william miller January 15, 2019

    You don't.

  60. Levi Clark
    Levi Clark January 17, 2019

    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

  61. hansdizzle
    hansdizzle January 24, 2019

    Yep…. off with their heads!!

  62. Farid Farrahi
    Farid Farrahi January 28, 2019

    Electric chair is the best method but more voltage and amper

  63. KEMYELLE ALI'MCKINNEY I STAND ACCUSED
    KEMYELLE ALI'MCKINNEY I STAND ACCUSED January 29, 2019

    I. CAN'T ANSWER IT DEPENDS ON CRIME THE ACTUAL FACTS ALSO.

  64. Cliff Roberson
    Cliff Roberson January 30, 2019

    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.

  65. Randall Stewart
    Randall Stewart January 31, 2019

    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.

  66. heavy meddle
    heavy meddle February 3, 2019

    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

  67. Doug Reimer
    Doug Reimer February 3, 2019

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

  68. douglas fortner
    douglas fortner February 4, 2019

    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.

  69. ShesAries
    ShesAries February 16, 2019

    Why be humane when they weren’t humanly killing innocent lives 🙄

  70. TAY LORD
    TAY LORD February 20, 2019

    Gilletine

  71. The Prayer Page Channel
    The Prayer Page Channel February 27, 2019

    Humane treatment? Were the murderers concerned about the humane treatment of the victims?

  72. Levi Bezzant
    Levi Bezzant March 2, 2019

    The guillotine is the best it would fast

  73. Isidor Fist
    Isidor Fist March 3, 2019

    Humane? That’s absurd.. It should be horrifying, painful, prolonged and then permanent.

  74. jujufactory
    jujufactory March 3, 2019

    GUILLOTINE. You can't go wrong.

  75. Brian Mulvaney
    Brian Mulvaney March 4, 2019

    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

  76. 2steelshells
    2steelshells March 6, 2019

    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.

  77. Christopher Crawford
    Christopher Crawford April 5, 2019

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

  78. Leor Greenfield
    Leor Greenfield April 5, 2019

    I have a better idea don’t kill people

  79. Cole Carlson
    Cole Carlson April 7, 2019

    50 caliber to the back of the head

  80. fishfingers1985
    fishfingers1985 April 22, 2019

    Fastest way to die sever the brain stem immediate incapacitation.

  81. Dean Staff
    Dean Staff April 30, 2019

    Let them live with my ex wife !!!!!! that will teach em……

  82. Στέφανος Ε
    Στέφανος Ε May 2, 2019

    Abolish the death penalty, cowboys.

  83. Buzz Clark
    Buzz Clark May 8, 2019

    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.

  84. papafordtrucCPO
    papafordtrucCPO May 11, 2019

    Would you like to know the most humane execution?

    Cancel it completely

  85. rhoads' girl
    rhoads' girl May 24, 2019

    Let the victims family at them for a few minutes or longer if needed.

  86. Andy Tran
    Andy Tran May 24, 2019

    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.

  87. Langley Bryant
    Langley Bryant June 18, 2019

    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?

  88. Xavier Alvarado
    Xavier Alvarado June 26, 2019

    Give them a overdose of crack

  89. Kenneth Padgett
    Kenneth Padgett August 13, 2019

    Sorry i think firing squad..better way to go..

  90. templar 2496
    templar 2496 August 13, 2019

    I whould want a shell to the brain

  91. Erik Firman
    Erik Firman October 2, 2019

    Shooting squad pops brain pops heart and anything

  92. Brandon G
    Brandon G October 17, 2019

    Better question: Who cares? Get a rope.

  93. Harriet Seibert
    Harriet Seibert October 18, 2019

    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.

  94. I’m dead inside jk
    I’m dead inside jk October 24, 2019

    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

  95. sni04588
    sni04588 October 24, 2019

    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.

  96. Karl Fortuin
    Karl Fortuin November 22, 2019

    Hire the mob that's more quick…..

  97. Andrew MacDonald
    Andrew MacDonald November 27, 2019

    The guillotine anyone?

  98. Zack
    Zack December 4, 2019

    Murderers should be killed the same way they killed their victims immediately after they get sentenced. Less taxes too.

  99. danceshadowmoon1
    danceshadowmoon1 December 25, 2019

    The cooking of the body during an electric chair execution is a myth.

  100. Denita Arnold
    Denita Arnold December 29, 2019

    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?

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