The execution of a criminal as punishment for their crime is an age-old punishment known as the death penalty. Death sentence laws date back to ancient Babylonia, and numerous texts and inscriptions document this practice. It's still going on in the United States, despite all the progress we've achieved as a nation in terms of education and other areas. In fact, the United States is the only advanced democracy that does not abolish the death penalty. Our civilization is demonstrating barbaric qualities if it continues to use this punishment method. What this study asserts is exactly what I'm saying here. Laws are supposed to protect people, not murder them. The death sentence is barbarous. Starting with the history of the death penalty in the United States, this paper will explain why the death penalty should be abolished.
The first recorded execution in the United States occurred in Virginia in 1608 when Captain George Kendall was hanged for spying for Spain. Numerous people have since been put to death in various colonies for offences ranging from murder to adultery to rape to theft to witchcraft to arson. Many philosophers and writers began arguing in the 1700s. The death penalty became a state-specific issue after the country gained its independence. Despite the fact that several states have outlawed it, it is still practised in some (Burkhead, 2009).
The big question is whether or not the death penalty is still justified despite its long history. A resounding "no" is the answer since killing someone serves no purpose.
In the United States, there are no federal statutes that explicitly oppose the death sentence. The Eighth Amendment of the United Specifies Constitution states that the federal government should not impose disproportionate penalties or punishments that amount to undue torture. The purpose of this amendment is to prevent the government from imposing excessive punishment on any one person or group (The Library of Congress, 2012). In many circumstances, the meaning of these rules is up to debate, and the laws themselves aren't always clear. After multiple Supreme Court rulings, many states still had their own laws surrounding the death sentence. After all the death penalty provisions were ruled illegal in 1972, the Supreme Court wiped off all of our death row inmates. Many states immediately retooled and reworded their death penalty statutes in order to keep them in place. Further, the Supreme Court attempted to abolish the death sentence by decreasing the offences that qualify for this punishment. Among other examples, the Supreme Court overturned a Louisiana court's decision to convict an eight-year-old girl's father of rape in 2008. According to the Supreme Court, the punishment was out of proportion to the crime. The Supreme Court's decision to strike down the death penalty for the rape of a child was a major victory for victims' rights. As a result of this judgement, the subject of suitable penalties for certain offences is also raised.
For the simple reason that society does not allow the offender to receive any form of retaliation, the death penalty is an unacceptable punishment for any crime. He or she has a better chance of making amends for their transgressions if they are forced to live in a small space for the rest of their lives. Otherwise, the goal is not met. That the death sentence serves as deterrence is also untrue. According to recent crime figures in the United States, this is clearly visible. Murder rates soared by 122% between 1963 and 1980, with the city of New York seeing an increase of 400%. In other cities, the situation is considerably worse. On the basis of 1970 homicide statistics, according to MIT, an average American was more likely to be murdered than an American soldier who served in World War II, according to their findings (Koch, 1985). The death sentence hasn't reduced crime, but simply exacerbated it, as this evidence shows. This demonstrates that the death penalty is an ineffective deterrent to crime. This is another reason why the death penalty should be abolished. If a decision is made incorrectly, there is nothing that can be done about it.
People are deeply divided over the issue of capital punishment, with some believing it is ethically correct while others believe it to be unjust. The only way to bring these disparate groups together on this issue is to abolish the death penalty in its entirety. Racial tensions are exacerbated when people are put to death. Organizations such as the ACLU and the NAACP claim that the death sentence is administered in an unfair and unconscionable manner. Black men who rape white women in the South are more likely to be executed than white men who rape black women, according to the authors of a recent study. This creates a new divide in a country already plagued by racial tensions. The death penalty is brutal in this regard as well, as it exacerbates tensions within society and robs people of the opportunity to lead fulfilling lives.
According to a moral, legal, and ethical perspective, the death sentence is inhumane. Consequently, it should be repealed as soon as possible.
Burkhead, Michael. (2009). A Life for a Life: The American Debate Over the Death Penalty. North Carolina: McFarland & Company Inc Publishers.
Bruck, David. The Death Penalty. New Republic. 1985. Available at: http://admin.faulkner.edu/admin/websites/cwarmack/bruck.pdf
Koch, Edward. Death and Justice. New Republic. 1985. Available at: http://faculty.rcc.edu/jjohnston/English50/readings/death_and_justice.pdf
Gottfried, Ted. Capital Punishment: The Death Penalty Debate. Boston: Enslow Publishers. 1997.
Guernsey, Joann. Death penalty: Fair Solution or Modern Failure. Minneapolis: Twenty-first Century Books. 2009.
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