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Death Penalty Essay Example

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Death Penalty

(Bedau 2005, p.In Furman, it was ruled that some state statutes were unconstitutional, which allowed that death penalty statutes had to be rewritten. Advocates of the death penalty began proposing new laws for capital punishment. In other words, advocates of the death penalty interpreted this as an opportunity to write new laws so that there would be no more doubts of retaining the death penalty. It was reported that there were 35 states that rewrote their death penalty statutes.A study dealt with 245 persons arrested for homicide in Philadelphia in 1970. Of these 170 were eventually convicted of some charge. Sixty-five percent of defendants who killed a white got either life imprisonment or a death sentence, while only 25 percent of those who killed a black did. Since these murders produced only three death sentences (all imposed on blacks who killed whites), most of the apparent racial unfairness involved life imprisonment, not execution.” (Martinez 2002 p.Michael Mello (1997), a death-row lawyer, said that the system of capital punishment is flawed. Mello tells of how a convict named Stanley, considered mentally retarded, was executed for some inefficiencies of the trial attorney.Deterrence means “the belief that criminals would end their careers in crime due to the threat of punishment [death] by the criminal justice system” (Levinson, 2002, p. The deterrent effect is an old issue that has been proved and disproved.There is no econometric analysis that capital punishment has greater deterrent than alternative penalties (Roger Hood cited in Hodgkinson, 2004, p. Studies conducted by John Sorenson, Robert Wrinkle, Victoria Brewer and James Marquart, found that capital punishment had no deterrent effect in the state of Texas. Texas has a high number of sentences and executions.Kronenwetter (2001, p. 27) says, “Abolitionists argue that most murderers cannot think rationally enough to be deterred by any penalty, including death. Most murders are crimes of passion, committed in moments of intense rage, frustration, hatred, or fear when the killers aren’t thinking clearly of the personal consequences of what they do. People in such state are incapable of taking such consequences into account.Murder and other capital offenses are committed in moments where criminals do not have time to think that what they were about to commit are punishable by

References

Bedau, H. A., 2005. An abolitionist’s survey of the death penalty in America today. In: H. A. Bedau and P. G. Cassell, eds. 2005. Debating the death penalty: should America have capital punishment?: The experts on both sides make their best case. U.S.A.: Oxford University Press.

Franck, H., Nyman, K., and Schabas, W., 2003. The barbaric punishment: abolishing the death Penalty (The Raoul Wallenberg Institute Human Rights Library, 12). United Kingdom: Kluwer Law International. 34-35.

Hodgkinson, P., 2004. Capital punishment: improve it or remove It? In: P. Hodgkinson and W. Schabas, eds. 2004. Capital punishment: strategies for abolition. United Kingdom: Cambridge University Press.

Levinson, D., 2002. Encyclopedia of crime and punishment. United States of America: Sage Publications.

Martinez, J., 2002. “The executioner’s face is always well hidden”: social science arguments against capital punishment. In: J. Martinez, W. D. Richardson, and D. Horsby, eds. 2002. The Leviathan’s choice: capital punishment in the twenty-first century. United States of America: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.

Mello, M., 1997. Dead wrong: a death row lawyer speaks out against capital punishment. Madison, Wisconsin: The University of Wisconsin Press.

Rae, S., 2000. Moral choices: an introduction to ethics. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan Publishing House.

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preview essay on Death Penalty
  • Pages: 8 (2000 words)
  • Document Type: Essay
  • Subject: Law
  • Level: Undergraduate
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