I can't figure out why you haven't mentioned the execution of Ronnie Lee Gardner, by firing squad. Seems like a natural topic for you.
I see some argue that it's a better way to go than lethal injection.
Here's a video (not of the actual execution, of course).
There are worse ways to go, and the method was his choice.
There's no real reason for my not writing about this; it certainly is right up my alley. In that video they say the prisoner chose a firing squad because he had lived by the gun and wanted to die by the gun. That sounds like macho jail-house talk to me. I would guess the reason was to go out with a bang, to make the biggest sensation out of his execution he could.
The reason they have that method in Utah is related to the Mormon belief in Blood Atonement. Now, that's some pretty archaic eye-for-an-eye nonsense, wouldn't you say? In his wonderful book about Gary Gilmore, the famous author Norman Mailer went into great detail about how this philosophy plays a part in the thinking of the most hardened and non-religious criminals. It's fascinating stuff.
But my impression of Ronnie Lee was that he was nothing more than a poor aging murderer grasping for the last bit of drama and excitement left to him. I don't know if he realized it, but his story was big news in Europe and probably in the rest of the world. Unfortunately, the thrust of those news stories is always, "what's wrong with the United States that they still do stuff like this?"
What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.