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Philipp Fischer-Gissot English 100 April 24 2001 The Death Penalty in the United States of America Most civilized nations consider the death penalty as a cruel and inhuman punishment 106 countries worldwide have abolished it and yet it is still commonly used in too many states including the United States of America The US in fact is one of only six countries that apply capital punishment on convicts who have been under 18 when they committed their crime Although the death penalty is a very controversial issue according to the Criminal Justice Department at the University of Southern Mississippi 70 of the Americans support execution as a punishment No man on earth has the right to decide or rule about another persons life The government has the duty to protect us from criminal individuals but exceeds its power by taking their lives There are five different methods in use today to execute people The most common one is the lethal injection The prisoner is secured to a gurney by wrist and ankle restraints He gets three injections which vary slightly from state to state The first one causes unconsciousness the second one stops respiration and the final one brings his heart to a halt Another means of execution is electrocution where the inmate is restrained to a chair and thousands of volts float through his body burning his internal organs The body changes color the flesh swells and may even catch fire The eyeballs pop out and he may also urinate or vomit blood The last three and seldom used methods are lethal gas hanging and firing squad When using gas the prisoner is put into a hermetically sealed steel chamber Two different gases flow into the chamber The first one makes him unconscious and the second one causes his death usually within six to eight minutes This method used on the Jews in the Third
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