A recent editorial from the Aurora Sentinel in Colorado commented on the botched execution of Romell Broom. The paper entitled its position as “Time for America to move past capital punishment.” In addition to citing the problems with lethal injection, the paper noted the risk of executing the innocent and the U.S.’s increasing isolation on the death penalty in the world. The editorial continuted, “Even for those who believe that such heinous criminals deserve to die, our society becomes dangerously base if we promote these kinds of deaths.“ Read the entire editorial below.

Editorial: Time for America to move past capital punishment
By the Voice of Aurora

How much more ghastly will the stories of torture in the Ohio execution chamber have to become before the federal government steps in to protect that state from itself?

It doesn’t appear to be enough that Ohio prison officials spent two hours fruitlessly digging in a convict’s arms for a vein last month to inject lethal drugs and execute the man. The convict, Romell Broom, was convicted of raping and stabbing to death a 14-year-old girl in 1984.

Even for those who believe that such heinous criminals deserve to die, our society becomes dangerously base if we promote these kinds of deaths.

Now, Ohio officials are looking at taking this grisly reprise even further. Officials there yesterday said they would investigate a way to inject the lethal drugs directly into the convict’s bones to reach bone marrow, in case a usable vein isn’t found by executioners.

This sordid plan is no nightmare from a Hollywood slasher movie, it’s what government officials are cooking up to prevent another execution disruption like the one that halted the lethal injection in Ohio last month.

Jabbing a needle into a bone to deliver any kind of drug is a notoriously painful procedure. To inflict that kind of pain to deliver the death knell to criminals goes far, far beyond implementing justice and brings the government into the business of revenge killings. State and federal law requires we treat animals for slaughter better than this. It doesn’t matter how revolting or aggravating a crime is, we should never permit this kind of torture of any human.

Now is the time for America move beyond such barbarism.

The United Nations and others have exhaustively studied the issue for more than 40 years. The studies show that countries that execute criminals don’t have any better capital crime rate than those who lock up the criminals for good.

The United States is the last modern society that doesn’t admit that the death penalty only makes for revenge, not justice, and that it’s all too easy to kill innocent people. The few who continue to mete out death are countries like China, Iran and Saudi Arabia, Cuba and North Korea. Surely we have progressed further than those societies and are ready to join the ranks of Canada, United Kingdom, Australia and even Russia.

(Editorial, “Time for America to move past capital punishment,” Aurora Sentinel, October 7, 2009). See DPIC’s pages on Lethal Injections and the case of Romell Broom.