The botched Oklahoma execution is a perfect example of why the United States needs to reform capital punishment ["White House: Execution inhumane," News, May 1]. Despite the crimes that this man committed, it is unacceptable that a human being was forced to suffer for a long time until he finally died of a heart attack. It is simply cruel.

This is a prime example of why the death penalty needs to be abolished. I feel that it almost defeats the purpose of imprisonment. Inmates should have to pay for their actions by facing them for the rest of their lives, and feel the guilt.

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Prematurely ending the existence of others under the excuse that it is payment for their crimes only adds to the suffering and tragedy that surrounds them and their victims. We sink to their level and indulge in cruelty by restraining an individual and injecting a lethal dosage.

Jessica Cudahy, East Meadow