The Death Penalty The first established death penalty laws date as far back as the Eighteenth Century. Although some may think the death penalty is a cruel form of justice, it has actually improved over time. Death sentences have been carried out by such means of crucifixion, drowning, burning alive, quartering, and even impalement - just to name a few. With that being said, some still disagree with means of today’s death penalty. Jack Greenberg, Professor of Law from Columbia University, believes there are much more effective ways of dealing with criminals rather than the death penalty. He goes on to defend his opinion in his article “Against the American System of Capital Punishment”, stating that racism could play a major role in capital punishment. Siding with Greenberg is author David Chandler, who also believes that the death penalty is an insufficient way of dealing with the worst of criminals. Ernest van den Haag, on the other hand, disagrees with Greenberg and supports the death penalty, which he makes very clear in his writing “The Ultimate Punishment: A Defense.” He believes that racism is not an issue and that the death penalty serves as an intimidation factor to deter criminals. Siding with Van Den Haag is Dr. Don Boys, author for Cornerstone Communications. He uses a religious aspect as to why man has the right to decide whether or not a man deserves to live. Although the death penalty has a few perks, it should be abolished for a few reasons. It has never proven to deter crimes more effectively than other punishments, there are serious economic consequences, and most importantly it denies criminals their natural born right to life. Greenberg and Van Den Haag have two very different opinions, but Greenberg is able to back up his opinion with facts, and makes it very clear as to why the death penalty should be abolished. There are multiple factors involving the death penalty that prove there are more effective ways of dealing with society’s criminals. First, the death penalty has never been shown to deter crimes more effectively than other punishments. David Chandler includes studies recently conducted in Oklahoma and California that have failed to prove that capital punishment has a deterrent effect on crimes in America. Oddly enough, it has been discovered that there is a significant increase in killing and homicide rates after the death penalty has been reinstated. The ideas behind capital punishment may have good intentions, but as Greenberg states,“Americas simply does not have the kind of capital punishment system contemplated by death penalty partisans” (Greenberg). Greenberg makes a valid point when he says the potential killers have most likely convinced themselves they will not be caught after they have committed the crime (Greenberg 37). He goes on to say the majority of people who commit murders either do not expect to be caught or do not carefully weigh the differences between a possible execution and life in prison before they commit the crime; these murders are most often committed in moments of blinding anger or passion. However, Van Den Haag still believes that capital punishment serves as a deterrence despite recent studies proving otherwise. Van Den Haag is convinced that the death penalty inflicts fear into hearts and minds of could-be criminals. He shares his views with Sir James Fitzjames Stephen who says,“Some men, probably, abstain from murder because they fear that if they committed murder they would be hanged. Hundreds of thousands abstain from it because they regard it with horror (Stephen 16)”. Van Den Haag also believes criminals would prefer imprisonment for life rather than receiving the death penalty. Later in his article he also states that even if the lives of just a few victims are saved due to deterrence of the death penalty, then it is doing its job. On the religious aspect, Dr. Boys quotes Genesis 9:6,”whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for
April 15, 2013
Is the Death Penalty Just and Applied Fairly?
The death penalty, also known as capital punishment, is the punishment of execution, administered to someone convicted of a capital crime; it is the most severe form of corporal punishment. The death penalty in the United States has been an ongoing debate throughout history. Capital punishment has been banned in many countries, except in the United States; there are thirty-three states that currently…
The Death Penalty
The first established death penalty laws date as far back as the Eighteenth Century. Although some may think the death penalty is a cruel form of justice, it has actually improved over time. Death sentences have been carried out by such means of crucifixion, drowning, burning alive, quartering, and even impalement - just to name a few. With that being said, some still disagree with means of today’s death penalty. Jack Greenberg, Professor of Law from Columbia University, believes…
violence is not the answer to any problem and murder is a sin for those who are either religious or not. The death penalty goes against this value. Committing murder is generally unacceptable and is a crime, so the death penalty shouldn't be any different. There is no clear evidence to support the absolute effectiveness of the death penalty in deterring crime in a society. The death penalty should not be used to punish criminals because it neither discourages crime nor reduces the crime rate, it does…
THE DEATH PENALTY
The graph to the right shows the results of a 2008 poll of 500 police chiefs in theUnited States, conducted by R.T. Strategies of Washington, DC. Police chiefs ranked the death penalty last when asked to name one area as "most important for reducing violent crime." Higher priorities included increasing the number of police officers, reducing drug abuse, and creating a better economy.
A study of the deterrence value of the death penalty focused on whether the death penalty deterred…
The death penalty is a very controversial issue. Many people have different opinions about how criminals should be disciplined. Even over 50% of Americans favor the death penalty. Many people want the death penalty to be abolished, and there are others who support the death penalty but only in certain cases. As for me, I am in favor of the death penalty.
People will take advantage of others and commit crimes as long as it is in their best interest to do so. The purpose of our entire…
The Death Penalty
The Death Penalty is a touchy subject to talk about to other people simply because as humans we have different opinions on it. Some feel it is unconstitutional or just straight up wrong, others feel like there is nothing wrong with it. My argument on it is that it is a fair punishment. I do agree it is a harsh punishment but it is harsh to keep people from doing certain crimes and if people do those crimes knowing the punishment then they deserve what happens to them.
been made regarding the fairness and moral acceptance of the
death penalty. Is the death penalty murder? Is execution an evil act? How do you handle the
death penalty through the eyes of religion? All questions that come to mind when the topic of the
death penalty surfaces. The subject of the death penalty is a very sensitive one. Most do not
know how to answers these questions. But one aspect, of the trail leading to either the death
sentence or not, is completely done all wrong. If two people…
The death penalty has been a very controversial topic for quite some time. Many oppose it; however, many are for it. There have always been problems with the death penalty system, and are becoming more evident. “California was spending about $100 million a year on death penalty cases as of 2008 in state post-trial costs alone.” (Jost 2010 Pg.8) Also, many capital defendants are still receiving inadequate representation at trial and that many or even most death row inmates…
of the Death Penalty
Over twelve hundred men and women have been killed in the United States as a result of capital punishment. There are over three thousand inmates on death row as of April 1, 2013. Multiple people are removed from death row every year before their executions because the evidence in their trials are reanalyzed and considered compromised. Many have been executed before their trials were deemed flawed, therefore they were executed for essentially no reason. The death penalty should…
February 23rd, 2015
The Death Penalty
The argument of whether the death penalty is effective is a controversial problem. Many
people believe that the death penalty is cruel & goes against basic human morals. Others
think otherwise and believe that it can be used to prevent further crimes.
People are just human beings that make mistakes, we live to make mistakes & learn from
them. If the incarcerated was innocent & put to death, nothing can be done to make