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The Death Penalty: Pros and Cons

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The Death Penalty. Immoral or moral; just or unjust? These are just a few of the questions people ask themselves when debating the Death Penalty which is arguably the most controversial topic of the United States today. Every time these words come up, we start yelling out our opinions on what we feel is right. Pro death penalty people shout deterrence across the room while the anti death penalty supporters shout about potentially killing an innocent man; some argue that is just and the murders deserve their punishment while others say we are murdering people too if we kill the suspect.

Being one of the seventy- four countries that carry out the capital punishment, the United States is currently fourth in executions per year. Beyond this, there are 25 other nations that have death penalty laws, but have not found the need to use them within the last decade. Although it seems like many people are opposed to the death penalty, an astonishing 71 percent of Americans approve of its use for specific crimes. (2006 Gallup Poll) 35 percent of people still believe that the death penalty is immoral even if they do support it. "When asked to rate the death penalty against alternative punishments such as life imprisonment, 50 percent still support the death penalty, with 46 percent believing that life in prison is a better alternative."(Issitt, Micha)

"The 'eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth,' mentality underlying the death penalty is a prescription for vengeance, not justice." was the statement Beverly Ballaro said when speaking of how the death penalty is prone to errors. In her writings, Ballaro goes on to speak of how the death penalty is not perfect, and, in fact, has many flaws such as racism which is a big topic for people who would ...

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...ave the possibility of being paroled. Statistics show that the majority of these criminals commit additional crimes upon their release.

By implementing the death penalty for each convicted killer, an estimated three to eighteen lives would be saved. (Tanner, Robert) One murder could be prevented for every 2.75 years less a person spends on death row. (Emory University) This data alone provides information about how to save innocent lives. The more research and testing completed, the more accurate today’s DNA testing is becoming. The reliability of determining guilt related to violent crimes is becoming increasingly more precise. The debate for the death penalty is an ongoing process. Some feel that the death penalty is a direct opposition of the Bill of Rights “cruel and unusual punishment” portion while others stand firm that “an eye for an eye” is fair.
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