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Capital Punishment: Con

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Essay title: Capital Punishment: Con

Capital Punishment

In 2004, 125 people where added to death row and 60 others where executed (PBS). The death penalty is the most severe form of punishment in the United Sates today, once a jury has convicted a criminal of an offense they can recommend the death penalty if judge agrees then the criminal will face execution. Lethal injection is the most common form of capital punishment used today. In 1972 capital punishment was ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court because it was deemed a cruel and unusual punishment. The decision was reversed in 1976 when new methods of execution where introduced. Capital punishment is a much debated issue and there are many different ideas involved in these debates such as its deterrent value, the possible killing innocent individuals, and the cost of the death penalty. I believe that the death penalty is wrong and should be stopped as soon as possible.

“Fear of death deters people from committing crimes.”(Haag). People that are for capital punishment say that having the death penalty stops crimes before they are committed. They also believe that if it’s attached to certain crimes it will make people stop committing those crimes for fear that if they do then they will be executed. The problem with this is that no matter what punishment you put onto a capital crime, whether it is death or life in prison, there will still be plenty of people that will commit it without thinking about its consequences. There are currently 43 federal crimes punishable by death; many of those crimes are different forms of homicide. Basically any form of murder is punishable by death, but why not life imprisonment without the possibility of parole? Isn’t the thought of wasting the rest of your life in a jail cell as much of a deterrent as being put to death? Countries that no longer have the death penalty have not experienced an increase in the number of murders committed. If capital punishment deterred crime so much it then these numbers would have gone up drastically. Certain types of people have been desensitized to the point that they believe human life has no value whatsoever. Those are the people that commit immoral crimes as murder, they don’t look at the possible out comes of killing someone. To the 'born killer' no deterrent is effective and they will kill whether or not there is a chance they will get caught. Lack of foresight and morals, however, cannot be used as an excuse for murder. Some say that capital punishment is retributive justice, and no direct connection to murder rates can be applied to it. There are no actual statistics about the deterrent value of capital punishment, they’re not available because it’s impossible to know who could have been discouraged from a committing a crime. But the only way to find out is to get rid of capital punishment, when murder rates stay the same the government will wonder why they kept the death penalty in effect for so long.

The Bible requires the death penalty for a wide variety of crimes including sex before marriage, working on Saturday, and of course murder; if we still followed this code than there wouldn’t be very many people around today. Even God himself imposed the death penalty for various reasons includeing wickedness, being abusive to strangers, lying about church donations, practicing birth control, and even being overly curious. Almost all if not all the population would have to be eradicated if God still practiced this. Currently Christians are against the death penalty, even though there religion says it’s acceptable the Catholic Church has come to realize that the death penalty is out dated and inhumane.

Baptists made a statement in which they called capital punishment discriminatory. They went on to say that the death penalty is mostly used in cases where the defendant is poor, powerless, or educationally deprived. This seems to be true. Only 3.4 percent of death-sentenced murderers from 1923 to 1972 went to college. An offender who is wealthy, and holds a position of influence rarely gets sentenced to death. An accused that is friendless and lonely pays the extreme penalty while the accused that have power or wealth get a well-educated lawyer whose use of legal technicalities and influence usually manages to get his client a much easier sentence. This was demonstrated in the O.J. Simpson murder trail when he said “If a man like me, having very little money and even less command with the court system were to murder my wife, I wouldn’t get away with my life. “ Of course most people know that having a good lawyer will help you get out of almost anything with little more than a slap on the wrist. I speak from experience when I say this, I was recently charged with a reckless driving (95 in a 45) and got away with four month supervision.

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