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WWL>Topics>>5-27 9:20am Tommy, bringing back the electric chair?

5-27 9:20am Tommy, bringing back the electric chair?

May 27, 2014|

Tommy talks to Deborah Denno, a Professor of Law at Fordam Law School, about the electric chair and the Constitution

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

Deborah dental professor at Fordham law school and write about it execution methods for over twenty years professor thank you for taking the time what does. So Kentucky now is thing -- bring in the electric chair back there's been talk about that Louisiana as well because of both that the problems of the availability. Lethal injection drugs and some companies and in Europe than in other countries refused to make him or send them to the United States. And there have been some execution attempts that didn't go so well when they've tried to use. I guess some different though or I think only one time it was different drugs that don't get lost in weeds on that. Tell me basically what you've written about the last when he hears about the death penalty. Article I read it I was actually electrocution looking at the constitutionality. Of that -- hysteria that at all the problems. Associated with that they went that was engaged and really start to take out there and denouncing electrocution and I went on to write extensively as I continue to do -- and the all the problems essentially it -- lethal injection. So in terms it to me any unknown professor obviously but if I had a choice of the electric theater again lethal injection I would -- neither but beyond that I would have to go with. The the lethal injection IQ I don't think of anything that could be controller to me than putting some money in a chair. And electrocuted him but yet there I guess obviously was found to be legal for a long time and still is. -- -- You know electrocution and at that dot. Method of execution in the country for very long time in the first. In kicking in 1998. Until another 1990s and early 1990s it was. Primary method of execution. So when it comes to an end of the constitution of solves a bit. When it comes a definition of cruel and unusual punishment I would think when the founding fathers. First put that phrase end they'd could they have anticipated I mean it was a method of execution -- -- that execution in this country before we have electrocution -- it. Hanging that would sound fathers were thinking about the eighth commandment and walk away we were we actually keep people are. It's a really horrible way that either tortured properties and its founding fathers really wanted to were very concerned about that. Let me answer your question that we do have a concept that made the announcement. Call the evolving standards of decency which recognizes that society people changes overtime and we certainly have changed. So -- -- really make a comparison and -- I don't know if you've gone of the medical part of this I presume you have between. Com has some money lying on a table and for whatever reason they gas belittle they do they do some other things some MI under playing and that as they call it a botched lethal injection execution. Injection executions of the execution currently that by the injection there's three drugs the first -- inmate -- the -- the paralyzing agent. That politically paralyzed and it states that would like to people process. But that because it may literally can not are attracted -- the cardiac arrest in extraordinarily. Painful. That is conscious and aware what's going on in the black people thing happened to mr. Lockett in Oklahoma that list. Recent botched lethal injection -- beta is aware conscious and is being injected. With these second and third drugs that is paralyzed. And that can be portrait stat I I think it's a slip of the cleanup which is better lethal injection and electrocution. One thing I get -- about it and you know logically. It sounds crazy but. Yeah if you if you think about it practically pragmatically it might make sense it. You look at Philip Seymour Hoffman and one of the great lines I saw was somebody was writing about his death and he said people are saying he died of -- heroin overdose they. He shouldn't say that they should they died of heroin is what killed in. And if it people die of overdoses I would imagine a deaths from heroin would be that terrible I would imagine you'd be high. Never done it I don't know and then you do -- fall asleep but are there not other methods that could be done. I'm chemically by injection without that is what every college done. -- troika of drugs that are used. I think the thing to emphasize here is a properly performed lethal injection execution. Say pie and scary experience anesthesiologists. But can come out here lately I've been excellent there is consensus on match. Is that is that it's not just about the drugs that we saw that in the Oakland. Obama made that -- hardly even got the -- it's and the administration if you don't have competent people doing this. And we very often do not have competent people that no matter what kind of drugs instead you have apparatus you have available. It's simply not going to be our going to war. It's not a hospital but I think it's the president would all the problems associated with that kind of environment. So we -- do what you're saying is medical professionals don't get involved with us. It did it but I think that the people who are most trained and the best people to perform these executions at the very people. Appropriately are not supposed to do it for. For professional reasons and for ethnic reasons. So would the way it's carried out -- to have. Is somebody a prison official. I don't know who it is that in the injection Neil is that we're talking about here. Profit -- so secretive. We don't know exactly who it performing these executions that kind of information is not. Revealed the -- content is that there's. That engagement and and there are you know their testimony in interviews with these people. Glad that it's happened we had seen that problems with at least executioners are. But that the doctors say it is buried it was a case of -- doctor being involved in 54 executions there. Doctor had been barred from every hospital in the state. That says the only job that doctor could have and he testified that he was dyslexic. And that he you know common -- thought he commonly -- -- drug. So. Is it ever doing -- is not qualified. -- and enter unless given I would think there are dyslexic doctoral pharmacists is not something you'd wanna have an everyday life. That's why I think that that's a pretty scary procedure. So. Even though everybody looks at the drug combinations and that's the focus now because. It department cracked the pats so much problem getting the -- that now many -- flat -- if you -- just saying. What really get well constant active action is who is performing. Com. And again professor amendment trying to demean this conversation and all but I'm just wondering. Com. And you gonna think this Sicilian I don't mean it to be -- -- again pragmatically you would think there are. Thousands of of junkies that are able successfully inject themselves with with heroin and I guess when you say about the process crowd shrouded in secrecy it's tantamount to the execution -- is our neighborhood. And that's actually where -- thought. Emailed all the time racing very. Good points that your race thing why is that so difficult to kill someone. And again I don't mean this -- disrespectfully but Obama -- -- all. Goal oriented league goal oriented as -- -- it is easy as possible Monica and tempers. That's right. The problem is that that you know. It's taking place at the present. It's not a -- do it over again I think these are incompetent people were injecting. Drugs and someone in the in the lock key technical mr. Lockett was getting his drugs. They were out -- that they collapsed and they worked out he'd never even got that. It's comparing it -- is trying to advertise and simply not. Getting any of the tribes could. So that I think it's the people. And what's happening it it's really aren't likely not so much having to do with the drugs. Professor before we let you go on. It would resume today at some point in your studies you've. It looked into the -- Agassi of capital punishment is that I preventable kind of thing doesn't work it in terms of deterring crime. You know the jury out on whether it deters crime at the -- does that. It -- the -- conditions have been going down rapidly for the last twelve years. And so our crime rate so they're not dead as overall correspondence between how much we execute people and and a decline in crime. How much we do now. Professor I appreciate you time fascinating -- -- we -- to talk to you again. --

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