Capital Punishment: The Pros And Cons Of The Death Penalty

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Since 1976 there have been 1,469 executions. 158 deaths by electric chair, 11 executions by gas chamber, 3 executions by hanging and firing squad, and 1,294 deaths by lethal injection. As of December 31, 2017 there have been 161 exonerations in 28 different States. This translates to roughly 11% of the 1,469 killed being exonerated before their execution. The term exonerate refers to when a person is convicted of committing a crime, but later is proved to be innocent. The death sentence, commonly referred to as capital punishment, is the highest degree sentence in the United States and reserved criminals convicted of the worst possible crimes. Capital degree crimes vary greatly among the states, but mainly include robbery-murder, murder involving rape of the victim, murder of an on-duty police officer, and child murder. Although these crimes are abhorrent and unjustifiable, capital punishment is a barbaric form of justice and rationalization for its existence is backed by false claims and a thirst for vengeance. It is an irrational and immoral legal concept to justify murder with murder. Although nothing can excuse the terrible …show more content…
It is argued that it would be cheaper to kill people serving time for severe crimes. However, it is just the opposite. Studies have shown that the cost of the death penalty is far more expensive than a system using life sentences as the most severe punishment. California, which has the largest death row in the US, has spent over $4 billion on the death penalty since 1978, carrying out only 13 executions. The main reason the cost is so high is because the average cost for just the defense at trial in a federal death penalty case is about 8 times that of a non-capital murder case. (About the Death Penalty) There is also a misconception that the death penalty deters crime. Studies show that the death penalty shows to have no impact on crime