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The Machinery of Death Marches On



With a bare majority of the Supreme Court having waved the matador’s cape, the state of Arkansas is proceeding with the killing of arbitrarily selected convicts:

On Monday evening, at 7:25 p.m., Jack Jones was executed by lethal injection in Arkansas’s Cummins Unit. And just a few hours later, a second inmate, Marcel Williams, was put to death as well. Arkansas can now claim the grim distinction of carrying out the first double execution in the U.S. since 2000.

According to the AP, U.S. District Judge Kristine Baker issued a stay of execution for Williams this evening, but after roughly an hour, lifted it. Thus, as of 9:22 on Monday evening, nothing prevented the state of Arkansas from killing two men in one night. And because Williams’s warrant expired at midnight, officials were motivated to act hastily.

Meanwhile, Arkansas’s district attorney is combatting claims that Jones suffered during his execution. Williams’s attorneys reported that 40 minutes were spent trying to insert the IV into Jones’s arm. Baker issued her stay for Williams upon learning this account, but ultimately, her actions indicated confidence that the second execution should proceed.

These random killings will not make anybody safer or bring anybody back to life. But at least these men seem to be clearly guilty of the crime for which they were executed and they were not convicted at trials where the judge was screwing the prosecutor, so one small step for The Natural State.

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