Eliminating the Death Penalty

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Murder by definition is the destruction of another human being. When polled, ninety percent of adults, aging from twenty to forty, responded that murder was wrong. In 1994, Polly Klaas, a twelve-year-old girl was abducted from her own home. Her body was later found, and her killer, Richard Alan Davis, pleaded guilty to charges of kidnapping and first degree murder. When polled, seventy-five percent of the same adults felt that sentencing Richard Alan Davis to death was not wrong. The death penalty can often be approached in this matter. The definition seems somehow inadequate when it is compared to the crime. It is a paragon of situational ethics, and solid moral arguments are slim. As with many debates of human rights, the moral implications tend to be individual. But, the facts against the death penalty are less vague. Concrete examples of false convictions, unnecessary pain, and barbaric practices can be found within this practice. Due to the imperfect nature of human behavior, no one human entity possesses the arbitrary ability to end the life of another human being.

Richard Alan Davis did indeed commit what the government considers to be the most heinous of crimes. By lawful standards, if anyone deserves to be executed, it would be him. To some, it would appear that executing Davis would be the fit punishment for the crime committed. In such cases, any other form of punishment can simply seem inadequate. Jailing these people for life just doesn’t seem punishment enough. However, there is a sincere irony found within the death penalty. It brings to mind the parental saying, “Do as I say, not as I do.” The government, in essence, has granted itself rights that the individual has not. Furthermore, these i...

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...erson is murdered, it is one of the most heinous thoughts imaginable. But, to advocate execution will only leave us as hypocrites, rather than avengers of justice.

The validity of the death penalty is negligible, as is the human ability to weigh the value of life. Conceivably it is possible to decrease the levels of heinous crime today. But, when heinous crime is punished with the same, we are no better than the criminals are. Rationalization of the death penalty only equates to judicial murder. The same judges inflict unnecessary pain on the loved ones of the executed. If what we are all striving for is less pain, than we should not be advocating more. There are no easy answers, nor is there a clear line of right and wrong. Individual free will leads to differences within us all. Nevertheless, we are all still human. That has to count for something.
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