People on death row should not be used for Medical Research or experimentation. I have several reasons why I believe this to be true. First of all, that is explicitly against the way our law system is designed. We don’t believe in cruel and unusual punishment. Our government is based around a persons right as a human being and US citizen. This reminds me of concentration camps. Hitler thought that the Jews deserved to be experimented on and used for bizarre medical experiments for the “good of Germany”. Who decides what is an acceptable medical experiment and who has to have it. They are still humans and for us to degenerate into forcing them to life threatening medical experiments lowers us to their level. We are now committing a crime by forcing someone to endure medical procedures against their will.
Enough about the moral implications. Now lets discuss some more practical reasons why using death row inmates for medical experimentation and research is a bad thing. 90% of death row inmates come from poverty. They can’t afford lawyers. Wouldn’t common logic indicate that if they come from poverty they probably haven’t had very good medical care? They represent only one small section of the population. Medical testing should be done on a wide range of people to get the most accurate results. Also their care in prison would not be equal to the care that an average person on the street would get.
Another thing that must be taken into account is the fact that over half of all inmates currently incarcerated are drug addicted. This will also skew any medical study that would be done. Years of drug addiction and abuse of the body will cause different results on those people than the average non-drug user. Any research would have to take this into account. Also it is expensive and sometimes very sought after. Should we really offer death row inmates the newest latest cancer innovations, when there are non-criminals out there who are dying for it. This type of testing is expensive and requires close monitoring. Who is going to pay for this medical monitoring? Well, I will give you one guess. The taxpayer that is who. We already spend almost a million dollars per inmate on death row, why jack the cost anymore.
Many inmates on death row are mentally ill. Should we really force the mentally ill to endure medical experimentation? If we do then we are becoming inhuman just as the people we are trying to execute.