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Fire The Firing Squad

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As KSL has said before, the firing squad option as a means of carrying out capital punishment in Utah should be abandoned.

Recently, the prestigious 27-member Utah Sentencing Commission voted unanimously to support elimination of the firing squad. And a state lawmaker has pledged to sponsor a bill to bring about the change. It would leave lethal injection as the means of execution in Utah.

These are positive developments!

The challenge, now, becomes one of crafting a measure that addresses some fundamental questions. Foremost is the impact repeal of the firing squad option would have on the sentences of the eleven men currently on death row in Utah. And is an alternative means of execution to lethal injection needed to accommodate condemned inmates with severely damaged veins from longtime intravenous drug use?

Clearly, they are resolvable issues.

No other state uses the firing squad. Because it's so rare, Utah executions attract inordinate media attention. Often, coverage focus shifts away from the criminal, the crime and the victims to the method of execution.

Such spectacles are unnecessary and unwanted!

KSL hopes Utah lawmakers will follow the advice of the Utah Sentencing Commission. It is time to fire the firing squad!

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