Oklahoma readies for 25 executions in 2 years. But critics ask, ‘Why the rush?’

On Thursday, Oklahoma executed the first of more than two dozen death row inmates over the next 29 months — an average of one execution per month over the next two years. If carried out in full, the unprecedented number of 25 executions would put to death 58% of the state’s death row inmates, who include a flurry of incarcerated individuals with mental health disorders and others who have maintained their innocence.

Given the state’s complicated history with executions, which includes botched procedures and a number of exonerations of death row inmates, legal experts and critics alike are perplexed by its fervor to kill so many people in such a short amount of time.

“Why the rush to execute 25 people?” Tracy Hresko Pearl, a professor at the University of Oklahoma College of Law, queried in an interview with Yahoo News, calling 25 executions in two years “horrifying.”

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