Essay on Juveniles: Banning the Death Sentence

Essay on Juveniles: Banning the Death Sentence

Length: 1146 words (3.3 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

As parents the worst news we can imagine is harm coming to our children, but having a child face a death sentence is completely tragic. You think of the life they could have, you ask yourself where you went wrong. You put yourself in the shoes of the family your child has hurt and how they were denied of a normal life. Sufficed to say when a child is on death row their actions hurt all involved. While many oppose capital punishment, we need to look at why we should ban it for juveniles who commit capital offences.
In order to understand why juveniles under the age of 18 deserve their own capital offence punishment we have to look at the biological aspect of this reasoning. Researchers of the UCLA brain research team have found that the frontal lobe which provides humans with advanced cognition continues to develop into a person’s early 20’s. The frontal lobe undergoes far more change during adolescence than at any other stage of life. (Ortiz, 2004b, p.2)
“One of the things that teenagers seem to do is to respond more strongly with gut response than they do with evaluating the consequences of what they are doing”, explains Dr. Yurgelun-Todd of Harvard Medical School. (Ortiz, 2004b, p.2) Adolescents undergo dramatic hormonal and emotional changes the most dramatic hormonal effect is produced by Testosterone which is closely associated with aggression and increases tenfold in adolescent males. Of the 17 juvenile executions performed from 1973 – 2000 all were males. (Streib, 2004)
Those who support juvenile capital punishment point out that adolescents know the difference between right and wrong; that brain development and upbringing should not play a role in sentencing a juvenile to death. They believe that without the death pen...

... middle of paper ...

... Enterprise.
LeMoye. (2008, August 26). UNICEF. Retrieved June 5, 2010, from
Mallett, C. (2003). Socio-Historical Analysis of Juvenile Offenders on Death Row. Criminal Law Bulletin , 77-78.
Ortiz, A. (2004a, January). Evolving Standards of Decency. Retrieved May 22, 2010, from Cruel and Unusual Punishment: The Juvenile Death Penalty:
---, (2004b, January). Adoloscence, Brain Development and Legal Cupability. Retrieved May 2010, from American Bar Association:
Streib, V. L. (2004, April). Juvenile death penalty today: Death sentences and executions for juvenile crimes, January 1973 - April 2004. Retrieved May 2010, from The International Justice Project:

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Life Without Parole for Juveniles Essay

- Supreme Court ruling Graham v. Florida (2010) banned the use of life without parole for juveniles who committed non-homicide crimes, and Roper v. Simmons (2005) abolished the use of the death penalty for juvenile offenders. They both argued that these sentences violated the 8th Amendment, which prohibits cruel and unusual punishment. While these landmark cases made great strides for the rights of minors passing through the criminal justice system, they are just the first steps in creating a juvenile justice system that takes into consideration the vast differences between adolescents and adults....   [tags: Criminal Justice]

Strong Essays
958 words (2.7 pages)

Essay on Life Comes With A Death Sentence

- “Every life comes with a death sentence” is a quote from Walter White, on the famous TV show Breaking Bad, after being diagnosed with cancer. This statement is true, and will continue to remain true for as long as humans are sentient beings. Death carries with it a number of emotional hurtles that are faced by the family and friends of the deceased. How do funerals change with different religious affiliations, specifically between Catholic, Islam and secular followers. Moreover, what values do funerals possess that have made them such a backbone to society....   [tags: Funeral, Burial, Funeral home, Death customs]

Strong Essays
1295 words (3.7 pages)

Juveniles Tried in Court Essay

- Laws regarding the age at which young people can be tried as adults must change because allowing juvenile offenders lighter sentences under juvenile court laws is only enabling their behavior and failing to teach them about real consequences to crime, yet not always in the best interest of the child such as alternatives are. It is necessary in some cases to send the juvenile to adult court for prosecution. But it is really hard to keep kids safe in an adult jail. Also by not giving youth their own separate facility they are not getting the proper education that they need to survive if they are ever released from prison (Gerdes 118-122)....   [tags: juvenile offenders, light sentences, jail]

Strong Essays
1165 words (3.3 pages)

The Death Penalty Should Not Be Sentence Essay

- United States of America is the only country is the only country in the world were Juveniles offenders are able to be sentence the death penalty. Juveniles lack maturity and does have a develop sense of responsibility. Being under the age of 18 children are not yet fully developed and able to understand how their actions could cause harsh punishment. Based on the eighth amendment children should protected from death penalty, because it cruel and unusual for adolescents. Therefore, it is constitutional to allow juveniles to be sentence the death penalty because immaturity, a high percentage suffer from abuse, and lack of understanding ones’ actions and punishment....   [tags: Crime, Miscarriage of justice, Prison]

Strong Essays
1356 words (3.9 pages)

Sentencing of Juveniles Essay

- The Sentencing of Juveniles Today, we live in a society faced with many problems, including crime and the fear that it creates. In the modern era, juveniles have become a part of society to be feared, not rehabilitated. The basis of the early juvenile justice system was to rehabilitate and create safe havens for wayward youth. This is not the current philosophy, although the U.S. is one of the few remaining countries to execute juveniles. Presently, our nation is under a presidential administration that strongly advocates the death penalty, including the execution of juveniles....   [tags: Juvenile Crime Criminal Sentence Essays]

Strong Essays
2565 words (7.3 pages)

No Death Penalty For Minors Essay example

- The Death Penalty is the execution of criminals for committing crimes regarded so bad that this is the only acceptable punishment. It establishes order in society by putting the fear of death in to would be killers. Although this works for the most part, one has to wonder if a child who commits murder thinks about the fact that it can lead to a death sentence. Studies by the Harvard Medical School, the National Institute of Mental Health and the UCLA’s Department of Neuroscience found that the frontal and pre-frontal lobes of the brain, which regulate impulse control and judgment, are not fully developed in adolescents....   [tags: No Death Penalty for Juveniles]

Free Essays
463 words (1.3 pages)

Essay on Death Penalty Applied to Juveniles

- Death Penalty Applied to Juveniles      In 1643 a sixteen year old boy was put to death for sodomizing a cow. Three hundred and fifty years later, sixteen states have legitimized the execution of juveniles. Four of those twelve states have lowered the legal age of execution to twelve. For whatever reasons the death penalty has been supported by the public since this country's existence. In this day and age of increasing violence, both juvenile and adult, it is time to re-examine the use of the death penalty as the ultimate solution to crime....   [tags: Argumentative Death Row Persecution Essays]

Strong Essays
1688 words (4.8 pages)

Death Sentence Essay

- Capital Punishment, killing a criminal through a lawful process, is one of the most highly debatable subjects in the world. Execution can be done in any of the following ways, beheading, electric chair, firing squads, guillotines, hanging, lethal injection, poison gas, crucifixion and stoning. The most popular form used in the United States of America is lethal injection. Some may argue that this is the most civil way of killing the criminal, but others would argue that the death penalty is not civil at all whatsoever....   [tags: Capital Punishment]

Strong Essays
985 words (2.8 pages)

Juveniles and The Death Penalty Essay

- Juveniles and The Death Penalty *No Works Cited One of the most controversial issues in the rights of juveniles today is addressed in the question, "Should the death penalty be applied to juveniles". For nearly a century the juvenile courts have existed to shield the majority of juvenile offenders from the full weight of criminal law and to protect their entitled "special rights and immunities." In the case of kent vs. United states in 1996, Justice Fortas stated some of these "special rights" which include; Protection from publicity, confinement only to twenty-one years of age, no confinement with adults, and protection against the consequences of adult conviction such as the loss of civil...   [tags: Papers]

Strong Essays
1599 words (4.6 pages)

Juveniles Essay example

- Juveniles The Chambers Dictionary defines juvenile as "young; pertaining to or suited to youth or young people. Having or retaining characteristics of youth, childish." The Texas judicial system defines a juvenile as one between the ages of 10 and 16. Juvenile courts have been established to provide justice for anyone classified as a juvenile who commits a crime. Although some argue that juveniles are well served in these courts, it is in the best interest of society that juvenile offenders be tried and prosecuted as adults....   [tags: Papers]

Strong Essays
800 words (2.3 pages)