Race And The Death Penalty

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Race plays a large factor in showing how you are viewed in society. Although there is no longer slavery and separate water fountains, we can still see areas of our daily life clearly affected by race. One of these areas is the criminal justice system and that is because the color of your skin can easily yet unfairly determine if you receive the death penalty. The controversial evidence showing that race is a large contributing factor in death penalty cases shows that there needs to be a change in the system and action taken against these biases. The issue is wide spread throughout the United States and can be proven with statistics. There is a higher probability that a black on white crime will result in a death penalty verdict than black on black or white on black. Race will ultimately define the final ruling of the sentence which is evident in the racial disparities of the death penalty. The amount of blacks on death row can easily be seen considering the majority of the prison population is black or blacks that committed the same crime as a white person but got a harsher sentence. The biases and prejudices that are in our society relating to race come to light when a jury is selected to determine a death sentence. So what is the relationship between race and the death penalty? This paper is set out to prove findings of different race related sentences and why blacks are sentenced to death more for a black on white crime. Looking at the racial divide we once had in early American history and statistics from sources and data regarding the number of blacks on death row/executed, we can expose the issues with this racial dilemma. History of the death penalty The death penalty is a controversial topic that has been discussed, cha... ... middle of paper ... ...rought attention to the racial issues in death penalty sentencing which will be explained by relevant data on the subject. Blacks on death row District attorneys are widely known for making very important decisions in a court case. There are almost 1,800 white district attorneys and about 22 black in the United States. Those numbers should cause some shock because those white district attorneys are the ones who are making these serious decisions for blacks. A study was done to see if just being black could be an aggravating factor in a case. The definition explains that “Aggravating factors are relevant facts and circumstances that increase the severity or culpability of a criminal act.” (Aggravating Factor Law & Legal) This would mean that race is a relevant fact that increases blame in a case which sounds like something that would not actually be valid in court.

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