Pulling the Plug on the Electric Chair

When Florida's Supreme Court posted photos of the bleeding, bubbling corpse of 340-pound triple-murderer Allen Lee "Tiny" Davis on the Web, the court may have sentenced to death a particularly American form of execution: the electric chair.

Opponents have long argued that electrocution was cruel and unusual punishment even before the chair took a man's life for the first time in the late 1800s, George Westinghouse, one of the pioneers of electricity, argued against it. He was opposed by Thomas Edison.

But after Florida made the gruesome photos Davis public on th