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Capital Punishment

Essay by 24  •  August 21, 2010  •  688 Words (3 Pages)  •  1,364 Views

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Each year there about 250 people added to death row and only 35 of them are

even executed. The death penalty is the harshest form of punishment actually enforced by

the United States government. Once the jury has convicted a criminal offense they go to

the second part of the trial, the punishment part. If then the jury considers the death

penalty, then the judge agrees that the criminal will have to face a form of execution.

Lethal injection is the most widely used by today's

death row criminals. For a period

between 1972 to '76, capital punishment was ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme

Court. There are many reasons for why they thought that. The death penalty was looked

at a cruel and unusual punishment under the eighth amendment. This decision was

switched when a new method of execution was formed. Capital punishment is a difficult

issue and there are many opinions as there are people on this earth.

Since the beginning of the United States there has been over 13,000 legal

executions. Texas has executed the most people since the death penalty has been

reinstated in 1976. There are only about 30-60 prisoners killed yearly. "The Bible requires

the death penalty for a wide variety of crimes, including sex before marriage, adultery,

homosexual behavior, doing work on Saturday, and murder. It even calls for some

criminals to be tortured to death by burning them alive"(SOURCE 1). Some of the things

stated in the last quote were a little morbid, and made me question in what I truly believe

in. John Stuart Mill once stated, " When there has been brought home to any one, by

conclusive evidence, the greatest crime known to law; and when the attendant

circumstances suggest no palliation of guilt, no hope that the culprit may even yet not be

unworthy to live among mankind, nothing to make it probable that the crime was an

exception to general character rather than a consequence of it, then I confess it appears to

me that to deprive the criminal of the life which he has proved himself to be

unworthy--solemnly to blot him out from the fellowship of mankind and from the

catalogue of the living-- is the most appropriate as it is certainly the most impressive,

mode in which society can attach to so great a crime the penal consequences which for the

security of life it is indispensable to annex to it", this was stated before Parliament on April

21, 1868. I find that in this passage a lot of good is said. How can you not agree with

what he said.

In 1994 there were 2,850 persons awaiting execution. Yet like stated before only

30-60 are executed yearly. This is ridiculously low number compared to 199 persons

executed

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