Proponents of capital punishment believe that killing criminals is a moral and ethical way of punishing them. They feel there is justification in taking the life of a certain criminal, when in fact that justification is nothing more than revenge. They also feel that the death penalty deters crime, although there have been no conclusive studies confirming that viewpoint (Bedau).
Most death row inmates are members of minority groups that tend to be poor. The fact they are on death row can be explained as a direct result of their marginal economic status. These alleged criminals receive legal representation that is not adequate for the serious crimes of which they are accused, simply because they cannot afford to pay for expensive defense attorneys (The Death Penalty). In virtually all cases of indigent defendants, underpaid and less experienced Public Defense attorneys are appointed by the court to represent the accused. Investigative monies are usually limited or nonexistent. This is one reason why minorities are over-represented on death row. More affluent white defen...
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... clearly support the argument against capital punishment. There can be no justification for the taking of any life, no matter what the transgression. By taking that life we, as society, have chosen to become as monstrous as those whose heinous crimes we abhor.
ACLU Briefing Paper No. 14: The Death Penalty. ACLU http://www.aclu.org/library/DeathPenalty.pdf 04/26/00
Bedau, Hugo A. The Case Against the Death Penalty. Ethics Updates.
Issues and Controversies: The Death Penalty. Issues and Controversies on File http://www.facts.com/cd/i00015.htm#I00015_b 05/01/00
Radelet, Michael L., updated by the Death Penalty Information Center. Post-Furman Botched Executions. The Death Penalty Information Center
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