“The end does not justify the means.” We are all familiar with the matter of capital punishment and what a controversy it is across the country. I believe the death penalty is an immoral and unnecessary act. Even if capital punishment is meant to be a stand against violence, the action is still wrong. The good intention does not change that in any way. The nature of this issue ties into religion, basic morality, and governmental issues, but beneath all the politics we have to ask ourselves if taking a human life is ever acceptable, no matter how good the intention is. Who are we to decide who lives and who dies?
The facts of capital punishment are finally starting to meet the public’s eye. The death penalty was used to help lower crime and cut prisoner costs, but the healthy motive has been lost. There are no significant decreases in crime rate and it costs more to have a prisoner on death row that to put them with the general population in the jails. As of December 31, 2004 there were 3,282 prisoners on death row. One prisoner a day costs $80 from the U.S. Taxpayer, so it is costs every taxpayer $30,000 per year to care for prisoners on death row. It doesn’t help the matter that prisoners on death row cost three times as much as the general population and are usually held there for an average of ten years while their case is shown to different courts. This is hurting our already injured economy, when there are actions to be made to get to a much needed solution.
The essay ?Death and Justice: How Capital Punishment Affirms Life,? by Edward I. Koch, is a rather conservative outlook of the death penalty from a member of the Democratic Party. It first appeared in The New Republic, a magazine that is known for its controversial articles. In the essay, Koch effectively argues the fact that capital punishment is not only a deterrent for crime, but also affirms ...
Some have already gotten to that solution. Thirty four states in the U.S. allow the death penalty. One hundred thirty seven countries have abolished it, but there is still a long way to go. Some countries even execute minors. Executions have modernized from hanging, to the electric chair, to a firing squad, to lethal injection.
The two sides of this controversy show up in heated debates everywhere. The 7 in 10 Americans that support the death penalty believe that certain crimes are worthy of the consequence of death and it removes some convicts from our society. Non supporters believe every human life has value and we it is hypocrisy for us to say murder is wrong with the death penalty in our legal system. In no way does this defend the actions of murderers and rapists, but we need to ask ourselves what is right and what is wrong. It is never right to kill someone. The death penalty may be legal, but the action is not justified.
Aside from politics the biggest issue of capital punishment is morality. You don’t need a religion to believe that no one deserves to die and sometimes people just slip. It doesn’t make it right, but people can make a horrible decision in just a matter of seconds that they would have never thought they would make. The consequences need to be faced with full responsibility, but we cannot say murder is wrong when we kill murderers.
Recently, something happened in my life that was an eye opener for me and really made me think about some of the men on death row.
Two Judge students were involved with three other people resulting in a home invasion at gunpoint. When they were arrested and awaiting their charges comments of the most horrific means showed up on blogs everywhere. As I was looking through I saw the comment five bullets, five solutions. Of course, their crime was not a capital crime, but this made me realize that sometimes good people make bad decisions, and everyone has some good in them. Everyday we all slip in little ways and make bad choices, some worse than others. People snap, and it could happen to any of us. They deserve a harsh punishment because they were wrong, but who are we to judge life and death? Only God has that authority.
... the arbitrary use of the death penalty or to preclude its use against people innocent of the crimes of which they were convicted. ... At the very least, politicians should not make demagogic calls for the death penalty, misleading the public and obscuring the need ... Amnesty International opposes the death penalty as a violation of fundamental human rights - the right to life and the right not ...
To get to a solution we need alternatives. The CUADP (Citizens United for Alternatives to the Death Penalty) have come up with a plan to replace the death penalty. Citizens convicted of capital murder should serve a minimum of 25 years before being considered for parole, and in some cases no parole opportunity will be allowed. While in prison prisoners can work small jobs to help pay their own restitution and donate funds to crime victim organizations. This will give them a better quality of life while they are behind bars and it will help our economy with the cost cut. Alternatives are right in front of us, all we have to do is work past the controversy. Can you take a stand?