China Executes the Most People in the World, But Texas Goes Big Too


Remember how your mom used to tell you that the spanking was because she cared? According to Amnesty International findings published today and reported by the New York Times, China wins the global “tough love” award, having killed more of its own people in 2009 than all other nations combined.

The actual number of 2009 Chinese executions is thought to be in the thousands, though it’s a state secret — much like whether Dad was really going to wash your mouth out with soap or if it was just an idle threat. (Nine times out of 10, it was for real.)

There were 2,390 executions worldwide in 2008, and China played a part in at least 1,718 of them. For you mathematically inclined folks, that’s nearly three-quarters.

Plucky Texas also showed up strong, committing 24 of the 52 American executions. (Let’s hear a shout-out for the U.S.! We were the most execution-happy country in the Americas — in fact, we were the only country in the Americas to execute anybody. If that’s not capitalism in action, I don’t know what is.)

Meanwhile, during the Reign of Terror that kicked off the French Revolution, some 16,000 to 40,000 folks were beheaded. So, Amnesty International should probably consider that before they get too gung-ho about anything.