Edward I. Koch uses his essay “The Death Penalty: Can It Ever Be Justified?” to defend capital punishment. He believes that justice for murderous crimes is essential for the success of the nation. The possibility of error is of no concern to Koch and if would-be murderers can be deterred from committing these heinous crimes, he feels the value of human life will be boosted and murder rates will consequently plummet (475-479). Koch makes a valiant effort to express these views, yet research contradicts his claims and a real look at his idea of justice must be considered in order to create a fair nation for all.
The lasting impacts of cases such as this one have proven that the issue of capital punishment is very controversial, profound, and tense, even today. The difficulty in deciding when the punishment becomes cruel and unusual has often led to much dissention in the country, and the arguments have remained the same for centuries, even since the very first execution was conducted. Truly it almost indisputable that the death penalty causes, and shall forever cause, strife when it comes to seeking a balance between appropriate consequences and constitutionality.
For centuries, the death penalty has been used by nations throughout the world. Practices such as stoning, the guillotine, firing squads, electrocution, and lethal injections have all been common practices to condemn criminals who had enacted heinous crimes. In concurrent society, however, capital punishment has begun to be viewed as a barbaric and inhumane. From these judgments, arguments and controversies have erupted over whether or not the United States should continue to practice the death penalty. With advocates and critics arguing over the morality of the death penalty, the reason to why the death penalty exists has been blurred. Because of the death penalty’s ability to thwart future criminals through fear and its practical purposes, the practice of capital punishment should continue in the United States.
The death penalty, as administered by states based on their individual laws, is considered capital punishment, the purpose of which is to penalize criminals convicted of murder or other heinous crimes (Fabian). The death penalty issue has been the focus of much controversy in recent years, even though capital punishment has been a part of our country's history since the beginning. Crimes in colonial times, such as murder and theft of livestock were dealt with swiftly and decisively ("The Death Penalty..."). Criminals were hanged shortly after their trial, in public executions. This practice was then considered just punishment for those crimes. Recently though, the focus of the death penalty debate has been on moral and legal issues. The murderers of today's society can be assured of a much longer life even after conviction, with the constraints of the appeals process slowing the implementation of their death sentence. In most cases, the appeal process lasts several years, during which time criminals enjoy comfortable lives. They have television, gym facilities, and the leisure time to attend free college-level classes that most American citizens must struggle to afford. Foremost, these murderers have the luxury of time, something their victims ran out of the moment their paths crossed. It is time this country realized the only true justice for these criminals is in the form of the death penalty. The death penalty should be administered for particularly heinous crimes.
Since the 1700’s forms of the death penalty have been used for one reason or another, but today some disagree with this judicial practice. The death penalty is the ultimate punishment imposed for murder or other capital offenses, and in Alabama a capital offense is murder with eighteen aggravating factors. In 1972 the Supreme Court moved away from abolition, holding that “the punishment of death does not invariably violate the constitution” (Bedau, Case against 2). Since 1900, in this country, there have been on the average more than four cases each year in which an entirely innocent person was convicted of murder (Bedau 7) and because of these startling numbers people are against capital punishment. It is a horrible reality to convict an innocent person of a crime and even worse to put this person on death row. There are even more horrific stories, like the one of Roger Keith Coleman, who was executed in Virginia despite widely pu...
In the Time article, “The Death of the Death Penalty”, David Von Drehle addresses the controversial issue of the death penalty. The death penalty in the United States is a declining and flawed method of punishment. The problem of the American death penalty is still an issue in this day and age. Von Drehle compresses the flaws of the death penalty into five simple reasons.
There are many false impressions floating around through American society concerning the death penalty; this paper hopes to clarify some of the more prominent, noticeable ones.
Recently in the United States, there has been 875 prisoners executed, but not one has been proven innocent. The death penalty provides justice to the families involved in the worst crimes (Jacoby). “The execution of a murderer sends a powerful moral message: that the innocent life he t...
The Death Penalty is cruel and unusual, however we still give constitutional acceptance to the federal system. It presents “a relic of the earliest days of penology, when slavery, branding, and other corporal punishments were commonplace. Like those other barbaric practices, executions have no place in civilized society.”(1) It is wrong to advocate the the use of the capital punishment when numerous options are available to those in need of rehabilitation. Three of the most prominent problems with continuing this archaic method of retribution are innocents conflicted with inaccurate verdicts, the death penalty being a state-sanctioned killing that only continues the evolution of violence, and the nation's taxes going towards the purchase of fatal narcotics used in the killings of fellow human beings.
The debate over capital punishment in America is a controversial issue. Whether it is an ethical, legal or moral issue, it remains one of the most highly debated subjects of our time. According to David Muhlhausen’s article, “The Death Penalty Deters Crime and Saves Lives”, more than sixty seven percent of Americans still agrees with capital punishment. However, that still leaves a third of American’s who are against it. He believes that it is greatly needed to help deter crime and prevent unneeded loss of innocent lives. In the article titled, “Death penalty is dead wrong: it 's time to outlaw capital punishment in America completely” by Mario M. Cuomo, he states that he has always believed that the death penalty was wrong and believes it has mistakenly killed innocent people. Jack Greenberg wrote an article titled, “Against the American System of Capital Punishment,” and he too disagrees with capital punishment because of the fact that there are too many failures and
The issue of capital punishment in the United States is a complicated and controversial one, one that is emotionally charged and morally perplexing. Some people believe that it is a necessary evil; the only punishment fit for the crimes that we as a society have come to abhor, and the only punishment that all criminals fear. Others see its continuing practice as a source of shame; a cruel, costly and archaic form of punishment that has no place in modern America. I feel THESIS – STILL WORKING
A phrase commonly presented in American society, “An eye for an eye,” is used to represent the ideology of the death penalty in the US. The death penalty also known as capital punishment is defined as punishment by death for a crime. In its simplest form, it is “state sanctioned killing (Jones).” Recent facts show that as of, “April 1, 2010, there are approximately 3,260 individuals,” waiting for their execution date while on death row in the US (“Death Penalty”) .It has been reported that, “since 1973 over 130 people have been released from death row with evidence of their innocence (“Death Penalty”).” The execution of an innocent citizen, along with the violation of the, “cruel and unusual clause” and the extensive cost of killing an inmate are all plausible reasons why the death penalty should be eradicated.
In 1997, 80% of Americans favored the death penalty. A recent national poll found that, that number has significantly dropped to an all time low of 63%percent. In addition, those favoring the death penalty dropped to fifty percent when those polled were asked to assume that the alternative to the death penalty was life in prison with no chance of parole. And, the amount of death sentences imposed in the United States during the recent years has dropped to the lowest level since capital punishment was reinstated. Hence, it would seem that our society’s attitude toward capital punishment is changing as well. What was once ordinary is now abnormal, and what was once essentially unquestioned is now questioned.The debate over the legitimacy or morality of the death penalty may be almost as old as the death penalty itself and, in the view of the increasing trend towards its complete abolition, perhaps as outdated. Capital punishment is horribly flawed, ineffective at deterring crime, completely unethical, outrageously expensive, and has no place in a civilized society.