Death Penalty Paper

Submitted By lovelyyliz
Words: 1341
Pages: 6

Elizabeth Madrigal
Professor Parker
13 April 2015 Death Penalty The death penalty: the punishment of execution, administered to someone legally convicted of a capital crime (“Definition of Death Penalty in English”). Recently, the death penalty has become a widely debated issue due to the publicity it has gained, especially from botched executions (pertaining to lethal injections), and the cost of it. However, the death penalty is much more than what the opponents of it claim it to be. The death penalty is a method in which justice is served; it is not just given out to any criminal, the death penalty is reserved for the worst of the worst. There are many methods in which the death penalty is carried out, and those include: lethal injection, electrocution, gas chamber, hanging, and firing squad. Lethal injection is the leading method in which death penalty executions are carried out, with 34 states authorizing this method. After lethal injection comes electrocution, which only eight states authorize, and those eight states are Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Kentucky, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia. Next comes the gas chamber method of execution, which only California, Arizona, Missouri, and Wyoming authorize. Only three states authorize hanging as a method of execution, and those states are Delaware, New Hampshire, and Washington. The least popular method of execution is by firing squad, with only Oklahoma and Utah authorizing this method (“Methods of Execution”). A popular argument that those who are against the death penalty like to use is that it is simply too costly. Although the cost of the death penalty varies case by case (it will be different with every case, because some trials will take longer, or there may be other factors which affect the overall cost of the case), it has been shown that the death penalty is more costly than life without parole. A death penalty case is approximately $1,028,700 more than a non- death penalty case with similar factors (“What Costs More the Death Penalty or Life in Prison?”). However, it is important to note that with the death penalty, the criminal will be gone sooner or later, and he/she will have no way of taunting the family of the victim by reminding them of the crime. If a person is willing to commit such a heinous crime, then they should be prepared to face the repercussions. The most fitting example of someone who deserves the death penalty is Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, one of the Boston Marathon bombers. Tsarnaev is currently awaiting his fate of either being sentenced to death, or being sentenced to life without parole. Dzhokhar, along with his brother Tamerlan, killed three people and injured more than 260 other people in the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings (“Boston Marathon Bombings”). If there were ever any case in which the death penalty was necessary, it would be this one. With the death penalty, Dzhokhar would be extremely limited in regards with who he would be able to contact, yet if he were to get life without parole, he would eventually work his way up to being able to contact people, and write back to his self-proclaimed fans, due to “good behavior”. Another argument that those who oppose the death penalty make is that the high number of botched lethal injections should be cause to do away with the death penalty. Last year, on July 23rd, a lethal injection execution took place in Arizona, on convicted murderer Joseph Rudolph Wood. The problem with this execution on Wood was that the drugs with which he was injected was a “cocktail”, which didn’t mix so well together. It took approximately two hours for Wood to actually be declared dead; he was still alive an hour after he had been injected with the mix of drugs used for his lethal injection (“Botched Lethal Injection Takes Nearly Two Hours to Kill Arizona Inmate”). The concept that opponents of the death penalty don’t understand are that there are different methods of carrying out the