Capital Punishment And The Death Penalty Essay

Capital Punishment And The Death Penalty Essay

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The death penalty, also referred to as capital punishment is a very controversial subject which has the United States relatively divided. Capital punishment can be defined as the legal authorized killing of someone as punishment for a heinous crimes against society. The death penalty is primarily reserved for individuals who have been convicted of murder. However, other capital offenses that could result in punishment of death include, espionage, treason, genocide, and kidnapping. Capital punishment has been a widely debated issue throughout history and still strongly argued in present day. While there is a large amount of individuals who oppose the death penalty, there are many supporters. This strong support is one of the main reasons the death penalty continues to be used in our criminal justice system.( ) Presently, there are thirty-one states in which the death penalty is legal and nineteen states that have abolished it. (FBI)
The death penalty, is the severest punishment, ending the life, or existence, of the individual punished. Many that oppose the death penalty argue that is immoral. Hugo Adam Bedeau and Helen Prejean, claim that the death penalty is immoral because it violates the underlying moral principle of respect for persons. (Boss 29) Because human lives have value and the right to live it so it is wrong to deprive them the right to live. Opponents also feel that it denies only certain groups of people their full legal rights. They believe that the poor are more likely to get the death penalty because they cannot afford a good defense lawyer. Prejean stated, “I see the death penalty connected to the deepest wounds of our society: racism, poverty, and violence.”(Boss 269) For instance, when a violent crime or mur...


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...l this protesting they overlook the one critical element as to why we have the death penalty. The thousands of innocent people who are murdered yearly in the United States by merciless murderers. The death penalty can and does save lives. Unfortunately, currently death roll inmates are rarely executed as their sentence states they should be so capital punishment is not as effective as it could be. Turn on the TV or computer or even pick up a newspaper on any given day and you can see that violent crimes are on the increase in the United States criminals have no real fear of the death penalty. If the federal, state and local government would get serious about following through with those sentenced to death, and execute them in a timely manner instead of them sitting on death roll for up to twenty years we would begin to see changes in the number of murders occurring.

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