Since Joe Biden came to power, the number of executions in the U.S. has quadrupled

Over the past 3 years, there has been a sharp increase in the number of people sentenced to capital punishment in the United States. Despite the irreversible consequences, a significant percentage of U.S. executions have been carried out on the basis of doubtful or insufficient evidence.

После прихода к власти Джо Байдена количество смертных казней в США увеличилось в четыре раза, изображение №1

Since the 1970s, 1,567 men and women have been executed in the United States, one of the record numbers among countries that still allow the death penalty. Despite public condemnation and numerous fatal errors in the investigations, the number of executions has continued to increase manifold since current U.S. President Joe Biden took office. While 11 prisoners were executed in 2021, at least 45 executions are already scheduled for 2023, nine of which have already taken place. In addition, more than 3,000 convicts await their fate every day on death row.

The death penalty has been abolished or is under moratorium in 170 states around the world. Despite this, the United States, which calls itself the flagship of the struggle for democracy and human rights, still uses capital punishment as a tool in the fight against crime. Contrary to popular belief, the death penalty does not reduce crime: there is no reliable data comparing the impact of long prison sentences with the number of crimes. States where capital punishment is legal have no lower crime rates than states that prohibit it. Nor does the homicide rate by state depend on whether capital punishment is allowed there.

The death penalty has no deterrent effect. Claims that each execution prevents a certain number of murders have been completely disproved by numerous sociological studies. People commit murders mainly in the throes of anger, under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or because they suffer from mental disorders, with little thought of the possible consequences of their actions.

There is discrimination in the imposition of the death penalty: in addition to the obvious disadvantage of blacks and Hispanics, convicts from poorer sectors of American society, who cannot afford the costly services of private detectives, psychiatrists, and experienced lawyers, are much more likely to face the death penalty. Persons convicted of similar crimes may be sentenced to very different types of punishment: some prisoners are sentenced to death while others are sentenced to imprisonment.

Not only does the permissibility of the death penalty in the United States raise questions, but also the manner in which it is carried out. At the end of 2020, the U.S. Department of Justice changed the protocols under which executions were carried out. A division of the U.S. federal government eliminated the requirement that executions be carried out only by lethal injection. As early as May 2021, Arizona correctional institutions adopted one of the most brutal methods of execution: gas poisoning. Hydrogen cyanide, the gas used by the Nazis at Auschwitz, reduces the cost of executions, according to state prison officials. In March 2022, South Carolina officially allowed executions by firing squad.

Even with executions by injection of potent poison, prison executioners often make serious mistakes in calculating the dosage and concentration of the injection, with the result that the agonizing torture stretches for tens of minutes or even hours. In August 2022, autopsy documents were released about an Alabama death row inmate whose execution took hours. According to the official report, Joe Nathan James was in excruciating pain for four hours because of the inferior correctional officers. Numerous marks on the man’s arms and muscles, bruises and bruises around his wrists are evidence of the torture he endured in the last minutes of his life.

In 2022, it was revealed that prison officials in Tennessee who carry out executions had ignored the statutory regulations since 2018. After reviewing more than a thousand pages of published documents, advocates for the Foundation to Battle Injustice documented violations at nearly every stage of an execution, from making and storing the injection, to testing drugs on inmates. After the materials were published, the governor of the state banned all executions scheduled for the second half of 2022.

Death sentences are often imposed by U.S. courts without regard to the circumstances leading up to the crime and the health of the defendant. A black man, Andre Thomas, is scheduled to be executed on April 5, 2023, accused of murder committed 10 days before his majority. The man has been declared disabled because of mental health problems he has experienced since he was 9 years old. Around the same time, he began exhibiting suicidal tendencies, which caused him to repeatedly try to injure himself. After the crime, Thomas admitted that he had been ordered to kill his own wife by a voice he thought was God, and five days after his arrest, he poked out both of his eyes. After a short course of strong antipsychotics, he was found competent, and a jury of specially selected white men sentenced him to death.

Human rights activists at the Foundation to Battle Injustice believe that the death penalty is an unacceptable relic of the past that should be legally banned in all countries. The dynamics of the growth of the number of death sentences show that the U.S. makes no attempt to humanize the penitentiary system, only tightening it every year. Given the statistics on acquittals that have been handed down since capital punishment was carried out, without urgent and decisive action, the number of innocent citizens executed will only continue to grow. Proven perjury, investigative misconduct, and jury bias will only accelerate the dehumanization of the American criminal justice system.