Capital Punishment: An Ongoing Arguement Essay example

Capital Punishment: An Ongoing Arguement Essay example

Length: 1042 words (3 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Since the year 1608, over 15,269 people have been executed in the United States and its predecessor colonies (Smykla, and Espy). With the multitude of persons executed, there is still little evidence proving the effectiveness of capital punishment when concerning future violent crime rates. The death penalty is also costly when compared to the cost of imprisoning a violent criminal for life. With such a definitive punishment and with its finality, there have also been a large number of persons executed who were in fact shown to be innocent at a later time. Although there is a lengthy history of the death penalty in the United States, there is an immense disparity in regards to those who support capital punishment and those who wish to abolish it, however, with the abundance of evidence in support of its abolishment, capital punishment should cease to exist in the United States until a time where it proves to be efficient and beneficial to society.
There is little evidence, if any at all, that supports the fact that capital punishment deters crime rates. In a study on capital punishment and its deterrence effects by Lawrence Katz, Steven D. Levitt, and Ellen Shustorovich, presented with little systematic evidence that the execution rate influences crime rates (Katz, Levitt, and Shustorovich 318-343). There are many reasons why the death penalty does not deter crime rates such as the prolonged time period on death row, usually ten years, the ease of appealing to reduce sentences to life in prison, and the fact that some criminals do not have the education to be rational enough to think about the punishment before committing the crime. Some proponents of capital punishment argue that if executions were delivered swiftly, then...


... middle of paper ...


... individuals but governments as well (Prejean ). The United States must lead by example and make responsible decisions and policies in order set examples so that citizens may follow suit.



Works Cited

Drehle, Von. "Life in Prison One-Sixth as Expensive." Miami Herald 10 July 1988: 12A, col. 1. Print.
Katz, Lawrence, Steven Levitt, and Ellen Shustorovich. "Prison Conditions, Capital Punishment, and Deterrence." American Law and Economics Review. 5.2 (2003): 318-343. Print.
Murray, Frank. "Innocents on Death Row." Insight on the News. 15.43 (1999): 30. Print.
Prejean, Helen. Dead Man Walking. United States: Library of Congress, 1993. Print.
Smykla, John, and Watt Espy. "Capital Punishment in the United States." National Archive of Criminal Justice Data. N.p., 1987. Web. 6 Jul 2011. .

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Capital Punishment Is A Form Of Punishment Essays

- Capital Punishment is a form of punishment, administered by the government, which sentences people to death for their crimes. Many of these crimes are murders and rape, and it doesn’t discriminate either. Blacks, whites, the mentally retarded, and even the military have faced capital punishment. There have been many legal issues with how to administer capital punishment, but now we have a system to constitutionally administer capital punishment. Even with these revisions, there will always be an ongoing debate on whether to keep or abolish capital punishment....   [tags: Capital punishment, Prison, Crime]

Strong Essays
1345 words (3.8 pages)

The Argument of Capital Punishment Essay example

- There not many issues in the criminal justice system that have caused more heated discussions and arguments as consistent and strong as that of the argument of capital punishment. There have been many religious arguments involved in both sides of the argument, citing both the need for justice and the sanctity of human life. This debate regarding the death penalty has become a complex issue in recent years with concerns as to the equality of the criminal justice system, the position of physicians in assisting in executions, and the likelihood of reform, improvement and rehabilitation amid individuals currently serving on death row....   [tags: Capital Punishment, Death Penalty]

Strong Essays
1845 words (5.3 pages)

The Argument Against Capital Punishment Essay

- Capital punishment has always and will always be a subject that people will never agree on. Execution has been used as a punishment for crimes, more specifically murder. Once, in 1972, on the grounds that it "violated the Constitution 's ban on cruel and unusual punishment" (MacKinnon, "Ethics" 289) capital punishment was abolished but was soon reinstated in 1976. Since then, the use of the death penalty has been argued. A major argument supporting capital punishment is that it would help to prevent future crimes - specifically, murder....   [tags: Capital punishment, Crime, Murder]

Strong Essays
1280 words (3.7 pages)

An Examination of Capital Punishment Essay

- Capital punishment also known as the death penalty is when a person who has been convicted by the court of law can be sentenced to death. This occurs when a defendant is being tried with a criminal offense; such as the conscious murder of a peace officer on active duty, or a federal agent. This punishment has been a constant debate throughout our history. People claim it to be unjust or a cruel and unusual punishment, while another part of our population claims that this consequence is not used enough....   [tags: Capital Punishment, Death Penalty]

Strong Essays
1383 words (4 pages)

The Punishment Of Capital Punishment Essay

- Since the beginning of civilization, people have sought justice by punishing wrongdoers. This punishment is usually proportional to the the crime that has been committed, an idea derived from the Babylonian “eye for an eye”. While the contemporary American public has generally agreed with punishments for less serious crimes, the ultimate punishment for capital crimes is still debated. Over decades, numerous court cases and precedents have shaped how and when the death penalty is executed. Even after years of innovation, the government has failed to produce a method of execution that is guaranteed to be quick and painless....   [tags: Capital punishment, Crime]

Strong Essays
1199 words (3.4 pages)

Essay on Argument for Capital Punishment

- Argument for Capital Punishment Since the 1970's, almost all capital sentences in the United States have been imposed for homicide. There has been intense debate among Americans regarding the constitutionality of capital punishment. Critics charge that executions are violations of the “cruel and unusual punishment” provision of the Eighth Amendment; while supporters of the death penalty counter that this clause was not intended to prohibit legal executions. In the 1972 court case of Furman vs....   [tags: Capital Punishment Death Essays]

Free Essays
1903 words (5.4 pages)

Essay on Argument for Capital Punishment

- Argument for Capital Punishment If it were up to me, every murderer in this country would be put behind bars on death row and have their life taken from them just as they took the life of another. The guidelines of " an eye for an eye" go back thousands of years. Many countries still hold true to these guidelines. Although America doesn't follow the same as these countries, I believe when it comes to murder, they should. Putting people to death for committing murder makes other potential murderers think twice about killing someone....   [tags: Argumentative Persuasive Capital Punishment ]

Strong Essays
944 words (2.7 pages)

Capital Punishment Essay

- a) Through the Utilitarian perspective, Bedau is a firm believer in the removal of capital punishment; Bedau thinks that no reason is good enough justify the more severe punishment like death penalty on the moral ground, and no evidence of deterrence and prevention is sufficient enough to support the retribution of justice to keep capital punishment. Bedau have raised several arguments direct to the issue of death penalty: The morality of self-defense and death penalty; the efficiency prevention and the deterrence through capital punishment; then finally the inequity treatment towards the racially disadvantaged and poor....   [tags: Capital Punishment, Death Penalty]

Strong Essays
2003 words (5.7 pages)

Capital Punishment Essay

- Not many issues come to mind that have affected society in such a way that has resulted in protests, out roars and heated debates as ha the issue regarding the death penalty. Debates have hovered around as long as capital punishments beginning; differing on viewpoints whether to abolish it or not and whether or not it is s just form of punishment. The different ends of the spectrum arguing their beliefs has resulted in a divided society with innumerable tallies under the pros and cons to the issues at hand....   [tags: Capital Punishment, Death Penalty]

Strong Essays
652 words (1.9 pages)

Capital Punishment Essay

- There are not many issues that come to mind that have had the same effect on societal divides as has the issue regarding the death penalty. Debates swirling around the grounds of whether to abolish it or not has long since divided society on different beliefs in America, resulting in a concept that stirred up countless numbers of arguments and valid points. People’s outlooks on the issue have varied on situations involving the death penalty. The very mention of it sparks a certain passion within the justness and fairness of the American judicial system....   [tags: Capital Punishment, Death Penalty]

Strong Essays
657 words (1.9 pages)