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Capital Punishment Essays (Examples)

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Death Penalty the United States
Words: 1676 Length: 5 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 67004188
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Murder cannot be a decried and yet practiced by the same entity without being hypocritical. Innumerable individuals on death row have been wrongfully convicted due to any number of reasons. The appeals of death row inmates sometimes never get heard. Those inmates who cannot afford to fight a good appeal are the worse off of all. Because DNA testing and more traditional forms of evidence can be used to reverse the death penalty, caution should be used when sentencing a citizen to death. Death is irreversible; life in prison is not. The families of the wrongfully convicted deserve such consideration.

Moreover, the death penalty is meted out unjustly to a greater number of poor, minority, and disabled population. Capital punishment reveals biases and flaws in the American judicial system. The death penalty is also extremely costly even though it would seem that killing a convict costs less than feeding one.…

Works Cited

ACLU. "Race and the Death Penalty." 2003. Retrieved Feb 21, 2008 at  http://www.aclu.org/capital/unequal/10389pub20030226.html 

Amnesty International. "Cost of the Death Penalty." Retrieved Feb 21, 2008 at  http://www.amnestyusa.org/Fact_Sheets/Cost_of_the_Death_Penalty/page.do?id=1101084&n1=3&n2=28&n3=99 

Bonner, Raymond and Fessenden, Ford. "States With No Death Penalty Share Lower Homicide Rates." The New York Times. 22 Sept 2000. Retrieved Feb 21, 2008 at http://www.truthinjustice.org/922death.htm

Death Penalty Focus. "Cost Studies." Retrieved Feb 21, 2008 at  http://www.deathpenalty.org/index.php?pid=cost

Death Penalty Evolution of the Death Penalty
Words: 1773 Length: 5 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 64265095
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Death Penalty

Evolution of the Death Penalty in Supreme Court Jurisprudence

Capital punishment has been in existence for centuries. As early back as the Eighteenth Century B.C., the use of the death penalty was found in the Code of King Hammurabi (Death Penalty Information Center [DPIC], 2010). The utilization of the death penalty for designated crimes continued through the years and became incorporated in Britain's penal system (DPIC, 2010). Britain's use of capital punishment carried over into colonial America (DPIC, 2010). Since that time, the death penalty has been a part of the American criminal justice system. However, its use has not been without strong opposition. This paper explores the Supreme Court cases exploring this controversial topic and discusses the evolution of jurisprudence on the subject matter.

Much of the legal support or opposition for the use of the death penalty has been at the state level. Where the death…

References

Atkins v. Virginia, 536 U.S. 304 (2002).

Death Penalty Information Center. (2010). Part I: History of the Death Penalty. Retrieved November 17, 2010, from  http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org /part-i-history-death-penalty

Furman v. Georgia, 408 U.S. 238 (1972).

Gregg v. Georgia, 428 U.S. 153 (1976).

Death Penalty Annotated Bibliography
Words: 3713 Length: 12 Pages Document Type: Annotated Bibliography Paper #: 44252530
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Death Penalty+ Annotated Bibliography

It has been theorized and even proven that many laws that are in place in America are the product of JudeoChristian religious beliefs, practices and writings, that have over the years been toned down to better meet the needs and standards of the U.S. society. here is a clear sense that some penalties for breaking the law have little if any effect on crime committed in the future, i.e. act as deterrents to crime and penalties for crime range from paying small fines to capital punishment. Opponents of capital punishment have always claimed that it does not deter crime while proponents have claimed that it does. Opponents have also claimed that the death penalty is a violation of the 8th amendment, cruel and unusual punishment and that it does not belong in any civilized society. Proponents on the other hand state that it is important to…

Tonry's book is a detailed and comprehensive look at racial disparity in the U.S. legal system. The work is troubling but based on serious inquiry and serious thought. In the work he discusses how many experts have convened over the years to determine that there is no reason to believe that capital punishment is more of a deterrent to violent crime that life sentences and yet the U.S. government is still alone among all Western nations to retain its legality.

Zimring, F.E. (2003) The contradictions of American capital punishment. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Zimring's book is a fascinating discussion about the history of capital punishment in the U.S. with comprehensive look at the ebb and flow of the laws that entrench it and the many theories and contradictions that are embedded in it. He is also very effective at providing a relatively balanced look at just why in a social, political and legal sense that capital punishment exists today and especially at the manner in which it is applied, including an extensive look at why the appeals process is so vast and strict. His thesis is basically that the process is so "moral" and "ethical" because it is the stop gap effort of the nation to come to terms with why the death penalty is still on the books at all.

Death Penalty Anti Historically Much
Words: 5884 Length: 20 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 76641365
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A good example is the 1985 murder of convenience store clerk Cynthia Barlieb, whose murder was prosecuted by a district attorney bent on securing execution for Barlieb's killer (Pompeilo 2005). The original trial and all the subsequent appeals forced Barlieb's family, including four young daughters, to spend 17 years in the legal process - her oldest daughter was 8 years old when Cynthia was first shot, and 25 when the process ended without a death sentence (Pompelio 2005). During those 17 years, Cynthia Barlieb's family was forced to repeatedly relive her murder.

hen a person is murdered, it is understandable that American society demands justice, particularly on behalf of the victim's family and loved ones. But we can not advocate capital punishment under the guise of protecting the interests of victims' families, and then cut those members out of the process when they do not support the death penalty. and,…

Works Cited

American Civil Liberties Union (2002). "ACLU Praises Supreme Court Refusal of 'Sleeping Lawyer' Case as 'Acknowledgment and Reminder' of Death Penalty Problems." Retrieved Sept. 30, 2006 at  http://www.aclu.org/capital/unequal/10466prs20020603.html .

American Civil Liberties Union (2002). "DNA testing and the death penalty." Retrieved Oct. 1, 2006 at  http://www.aclu.org/capital/innocence/10392pub20020626.html .

Amnesty International (2006). "Death penalty." Retrieved Sept. 30, 2006 at  http://www.amnestyusa.org/abolish/index.do .

Antonio, Michael E. (2006). "Arbitrariness and the death penalty: how the defendant's appearance during trial influences capital jurors' punishment decision." Behavioral Sciences & the Law. March 2006.Vol.24, Iss. 2.

Death Penalty as Justified Murder
Words: 2596 Length: 8 Pages Document Type: Research Paper Paper #: 70372808
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However, the reasons why people commit crime are as different as the individuals themselves. Intentional murder comes in two different flavors. The first is the carefully plotted, well thought out, planned act. In this scenario, motivational theory takes over. The person must feel that they will gain some type of value from the action. It may be that they gain something, such as money, or they may feel that eliminating a person will offer them some type of protection. In any case, the person justifies their actions through a perceived reward in the future (Horisch and Strassmair).

In the case of an intentional murder, the death penalty may deter the action. However, several conditions must be met for the fear of death to act as a deterrent. The person must feel that there is a significant possibility that they will be caught and punished for their crimes. In many cases,…

References

Amnesty International. Death Penalty. 2008. www.amnestyusa.org/death-penalty/page.do?id=1011005).

Death Penalty Information Center. Facts About the Death Penalty. March 1, 2009.  http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org /FactSheet.pdf' target='_blank' REL='NOFOLLOW'>

Death Penalty Cannot Be Equalled
Words: 1491 Length: 5 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 33996901
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[James fieser] We also have to assess the 'proportionality of happiness' factor in determining if capital punishment is justifiable in a particular case. That is to say that if the execution of a prisoner will save the lives of many people capital punishment can be approved in such cases. Let us for instance take the example of a captured terrorist or a suicide bomber. In this case it is fairly obvious that the destructive potential of these people would be greater and consequently their execution entails greater safety, protection and happiness for the society. Under these circumstances capital punishment stands clearly justified. Finally, the cost factor is also used by abolitionists in supporting their argument. While the legal cost of executions maybe high they are insignificant when compared with delivering justice.

The deontological theory on the other hand is concerned only with the rightfulness of an act irrespective of its…

Bibliography

1) James Fieser, "Capital Punishment," Accessed on 3rd June 2007, available at  http://www.utm.edu/research/iep/c/capitalp.htm 

2) Dudley Sharp, "Death Penalty as a Deterrent," Accessed on 3rd June 2007, available at http://www.dpinfo.com/death_penalty_as_a_deterrent.htm

3) Kenneth Cauthen, " Capital Punishment," Accessed on 3rd June 2007,

Available at,  http://www.frontiernet.net/~kenc/cappun.htm

Death Penalty Is the One
Words: 1335 Length: 4 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 2312320
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Our prejudiced minds and clouded vision make us believe that all black men are criminals resulting in a twisted criminal justice system. Thomas Sancton (1991) reveals, "...blacks and Hispanics are proportionally far more likely to be sent to death chambers than whites; that poor defendants are condemned more often than rich ones; that the existence of the death penalty, despite widespread beliefs to the contrary, in fact has no deterrent value. The execution in some states of minors and retarded inmates is profoundly shocking to many people in the U.S. And abroad, as is the multiplicity of judicial errors that have sent innocent people to execution chambers or long terms on death row."

Regardless of what people have to say about death penalty, researches and unbiased studies have shown that this form of punishment doesn't serve any good purpose. It exists because society refuses to operate with compassion but revels…

Works Cited

1) Richard a. Posner, Capital Crimes., the New Republic, 04-01-2002

2) Thomas Sancton/Paris With reporting by James Graff and Gareth Harding/Brussels, Barry Hillenbrand/Washington, Christine Whitehou, a Matter of Life or Death the McVeigh case shows how differently Europe and America view capital punishment., Time International, 05-21-2001, pp 28+.

4) Eric Pooley Reported by Sally B. Donnelly and J.F.O. Mcallister / Washington, Sylvester Monroe/Atmore, Andrea Sac, Nation/Crime and Punishment: Death or Life? Mcveigh Could Be the Best Argument for Executions, but His Case Highlights the Problems That Arise When Death Sentences Are Churned Out in Huge Numbers., Time, 06-16-1997, Pp 31+.

5) the cruel and ever more unusual punishment. Vol. 351, the Economist, 05-15-1999.

Death Penalty and Mental Illness
Words: 2519 Length: 7 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 15774261
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Moreover, in Perry v. Louisiana, 498 U.S. 38 (1990), the Court used that decision to bolster Louisiana's attempts to forcibly medicate a prisoner in order to make him death-eligible. If one agrees that the death penalty is a just penalty for one who has committed a capital crime, and that the reason that mentally ill defendants should not be executed is because they lack competence, then it does not seem unethical to allow them to be forcibly medicated in order to be competent. After all, in that scenario, avoiding medication could be likened to any other attempt to avoid punishment. Moreover, an organic physical disorder that arose after conviction, but that would have prevented a defendant from committing a crime, would not be sufficient reason not to execute a person on death row.

However, forced medication, especially for court appearances, may violate a defendant's Fifth Amendment right to present a…

References

Bonnie, R. (2007). Panetti v. Quarterman: mental illness, the death penalty, and human dignity. Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law, 5, 257-283.

Fentiman, L. (1986). Whose right is it anyway? Rethinking competency to stand trial in light of the synthetically sane insanity defense. University of Miami Law Review, 40, 1109-1127.

Ford v. Wainwright, 477 U.S. 399 (1986).

Panetti v. Quarterman, 127 S. Ct. 2842 (2007).

Death Penalty Dudley Sharp Claims
Words: 1106 Length: 4 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 46667763
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Racism is also a problem in the penal system. Furthermore, even if only one innocent person were sentenced to death it would be too many.

1. Perez's observations are most likely correct. Although whistleblowers perform an admirable and courageous act of public service, their efforts are thwarted by legal, political, and social obstacles. I fully agree with the author's observations but still believe whitleblowers are admirable. Whistleblowers should be encouraged to come forward because they ensure a more ethical society. Discouraging whistleblowing allows white collar crime to flourish.

2. Rob Perez claims that whistleblowers suffer consequences including social isolation that may outweigh the impact of their courageous deeds. Colleagues and coworkers cut off the whistleblower. A whistleblower is brought into the public eye, making it difficult for that individual to operate socially or in a business environment. A whistleblower might lose all his or her business accounts and contacts because…

Death Penalty Is the Use of Death
Words: 729 Length: 2 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 51579583
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Death penalty is the use of death as a punishment for the crimes committed by an individual. In most cases, death penalty is administered by lethal drugs or by electrocution. There has been a lot of debate on the moral and ethical aspect of issuing death penalty to criminals and many human rights groups are advocating the use of long-term imprisonment without parole (LWOP) as an alternative to death penalty. But, are they really justified in opposing the death penalty? In many cases, this justification is not valid as it leads to more crime and higher taxes for the society.

Death penalty has been present in the United States from colonial times. The first ever recorded execution was in Jamestown in 1608 and since then, it has been used as an effective tool of punishment (Supreme Court Debates, Dec 2004). With such a long history, it is no surprise that…

References

Soss, Joe; Langbein, Laura; Metelko, Alan. (2003). Why Do White Americans support the death penalty? Journal of Politics. 65(2), 397-421.

No author. (Dec 2004). The Death Penalty in America. Supreme Court Debates. 7 (9), 259.

Death Penalty and Race Arguments
Words: 4823 Length: 15 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 45563116
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Statistics show that black murderers are far more likely than white murderers to get the death penalty, especially if the victim was white. Blacks make up 12% of the population but 40% of the population on death row, as noted. Georgia can serve as a case in point. Statistics show that a black man accused of killing a white person in Georgia is substantially more likely to receive the death penalty than a white person convicted of killing either a white or a black, and forty-six percent of the inmates on Georgia's death row are black, with most on death row for killing a white person. The situation is much the same in the 35 other states that have capital punishment. In Maryland, blacks make up nearly 90% of the prisoners on death row; in Illinois, 63%; and in Pennsylvania, 60%. The disparity nationwide is even greater when the race…

References

Aguirre, a., Jr., & Baker, D.V. (1991). Race, racism, and the death penalty in the United States. Berrien Springs, Michigan: Vande Vere Publishing.

Amnesty International (1999).. Killing with prejudice: race and the death penalty. Amnesty International, Pub. No. AMR 51/52/99. London: Amnesty International.

Baldus, D.C., Woodworth, Q., & Pulaski, C.A., Jr. (1990). Equal justice and the death penalty: A legal and empirical analysis. Boston: Northeastern University Press.

Baldus, D.C., Woodworth, G., Zuckerman, D., Weiner, N.A., & Broffitt, B. (1998). Racial discrimination and the death penalty in the post-Furman era: An empirical and legal overview, with recent findings from Philadelphia. Cornell Law Review 83:1638-770

Death Penalty Support of the
Words: 1717 Length: 5 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 52067091
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The Death Penalty should not be considered as something that people desire, but as a form of punishment whose purpose is to deter crimes from being committed. Those who support this form of punishment believe that this is the only way that society can make sure that people who consider committing serious crimes can be stopped. There is a strong sentiment that those who commit the kind of crimes that would warrant the death penalty should not be put into prison for life. It is believed that this still presents these people with the opportunity to offend again.

eferences

Anderson, David. (2008). Arguments for the Death Penalty. etrieved May 25, 2010, from Web

site: http://sites.google.com/site/yesdeathpenalty/home2

Death Penalty Arguments: Deterrent or evenge. (2001). etrieved May 24, 2010, from Web

site: http://www.prodeathpenalty.com/ornellaspaper.htm

Hinton, Patrick. (2009). The Pros and Cons of the Death Penalty. etrieved May 25, 2010, from Suite 101 Web site:…

References

Anderson, David. (2008). Arguments for the Death Penalty. Retrieved May 25, 2010, from Web

site:  http://sites.google.com/site/yesdeathpenalty/home2 

Death Penalty Arguments: Deterrent or Revenge. (2001). Retrieved May 24, 2010, from Web

site:  http://www.prodeathpenalty.com/ornellaspaper.htm

Death Penalty the United States
Words: 2490 Length: 8 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 8901366
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However, this difficulty can be avoided by examining van den Haag's distinction between justice and equality. The physical reality of administering justice can never match its theoretical guidelines. Justice is a necessary tool in the aim of producing a functional society. Accordingly, inequities that arise in its practice must be tolerated -- although fought against. State sanctioned killing, on the other hand, is not a logistic necessity for any society. Death is the most severe and permanent form of punishment American society has to offer. Mistakes and breeches of justice cannot be rectified. The most direct, simplest, and easiest way to eliminate the arbitrary factors in a form of punishment not essential to society is to remove that form of punishment. Justice is intrinsically unequal, so assigning it the responsibility of life and death decisions is unwarrantable. Stephen Nathanson writes,

To do away with punishment entirely would be to do…

Bibliography

Baird, Robert M. And Stuart E. Rosenbaum. (1995). Punishment and the Death Penalty. New York: Prometheus.

Bessler, John D. (2003). Kiss of Death: America's Love Affair with the Death Penalty. Boston: Northeastern University.

Kurtis, Bill. (2004). The Death Penalty on Trial: Crisis in American Justice. New York: Public Affairs.

Sarat, Austin. (2001). When the State Kills: Capital Punishment and the American Condition. Princeton: Princeton University.

Death Penalty as a Deterrent
Words: 1156 Length: 3 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 60773956
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In contrast, other data, compiled by state and federal agencies within the last twenty years, failed "to demonstrate any deterrent value to the death penalty" and according to data from the Bureau of Justice Statistics, "when states with the death penalty (were) compared to those without the death penalty," it was shown that "a majority of death penalty states have homicide rates higher than non-death penalty states" (Espejo 58).

The death penalty has also come under other criticism, especially in relation to executing innocent persons on death row in America's prison system. Of course, with the advent of DNA testing, many death-row inmates have been exonerated after tests revealed that they could not have been involved in their alleged crimes. Yet some death penalty advocates still believe that the possibility of executing innocent people does not justify the abolition of the death penalty. As Stephen Markman puts it, "the death…

Works Cited

Bedau, Hugo and Paul Cassell. Debating the Death Penalty. New York: Oxford University Press, 2004.

Bidinotto, Robert. Criminal Justice?: The Legal System vs. Individual Responsibility. New York: Foundation for Economic Education, 1996.

Espejo, Roman, Ed. Does Capital Punishment Deter Crime? Farmington Hills, MI: Thomson-Gale, 2003.

Pojman, Louis and Jeffrey Reiman. The Death Penalty: For and Against. New York: Rowman and Littlefield, 1998.

Death Penalty Thirty-Eight States in
Words: 1680 Length: 5 Pages Document Type: Term Paper Paper #: 41962256
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The victim is unable to make peace with himself, say goodbye to his family or have his constitutional rights seen too. When a murder is committed, I believe that the perpetrator does not forfeit his rights, but rather some of the respect and convention which is usually given to a dying person. After all, what respect and convention was awarded to his victim?

Many of the states which currently allow the death penalty have victim services via the department of Corrections. The services which they provide range all the way from family support and counseling to the provision for family members of the victim to watch the execution should they so desire. This ability is limited state to state, however. It should also be noted that several of the victims services programs have been severely curtailed due to budget cuts, while the needs of the prisoner in the time surrounding…

Bibliography

John Paul II, Gospel of Life, the (Evangelium Vitae) (1995) Three Rivers Press

Quinto, Morgan "Murder Rate in 2001 National Rate = 5.6 Murders per 100,000 Population" Accessed via the World Wide Web on 17 May 2006 at http://www.morganquitno.com/cit01rank.pdf

No Author Cited "Illinois Suspends Death Penalty Indefinitely" January 30, 2000 accessed via the World Wide Web on 17 May 2006 at  http://archives.cnn.com/2000/U.S./01/31/illinois.executions.02/ 

Prejean, Helen, CSJ. "Would Jesus Pull The Switch" Salt of the Earth. 1997 Accessed via the World Wide Web on 17 May 2006 at  http://salt.claretianpubs.org/issues/deathp/prejean.html

Death Penalty and the Bible
Words: 2781 Length: 10 Pages Document Type: Research Paper Paper #: 90172774
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Death Penalty II

The Death Penalty and the Bible

The Bible is an important and valuable book providing a wealth of information, and it should be used as a determination as to whether the death penalty should be chosen for certain, specific crimes, despite the often-cited issue of separation between church and state.

Biblical Crimes

ape

Sodomy

Bestiality

Adultery

Murder

f. Other Crimes

The Death Penalty

Biblical Times

ansom From the Death Penalty

The Separation of Church and State

The death penalty has been around since biblical times, during which it was commonly used for a number of offenses. It is important to point out, however, that these offenses were punishable by death, meaning that the death penalty could be used. That does not mean that it had to be used, and there was discretion available. Here, several common crimes will be looked at in the context of biblical death…

References

Anderson, B.W., Bishop, S., & Newman, J. (2006). Understanding the Old Testament. NY: Pearson.

Anderson, E. (2007). If God is dead, is everything permitted? In Hitchens, Christopher. The portable Atheist: Essential readings for the nonbeliever. Philadelphia: Da Capo Press.

Dershowitz. (2000). The Genesis of Justice. NY: Grand Central Publishing.

Freedman, D.N., Myers, A.C., & Beck, A.B. (2000). Eerdmans Dictionary of the Bible. NY: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.

Death Penalty -- it Doesn't
Words: 1565 Length: 5 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 98720630
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165). On page 166 Bannister points out that outside of China, the numbers show a decrease in individuals being put to death through capital punishment. In 2006, the number of reported executions dropped to 1591 from 2148 in 2005; also, since 1996 more than 30 nations have "put an end to this cruel and inhuman practice" (Bannister, 170).

Conclusion

The Chief Editor of Criminal Law Review, Chen Xingliang, writes that there is a consensus among the scholars that contribute to his publication; and those scholars "…are in favor of strict limitations on the death penalty in order to eventually abolish it" (p. 41). However, Xingliang admits that the "public understanding of the death penalty is quite different fro that of these scholars" (p. 42). That is because the "public support for the death penalty is formed with an irrational understanding and thus should not be a justified factor considered for…

Works Cited

Center for Individual Freedom. (2007). Death Penalty Deters Future Murders, According to Remarkable New Empirical Study. Retrieved Dec. 1, 2010, from  http://www.cfif.org .

Bannister, Piers. (2008). The death penalty: UN victory puts total abolition within our grasp.

International Review of Law Computers & Technology, 22(1-2), 165-170.

DeathPenalty.com (2010). Does the death penalty deter crime? Retrieved Dec. 1, 2010, from  http://deathpenalty.procon.org . (Muhlhausen, ACLU, Bert, Reno, Borg, Van Den Haag).

Death Penalty a Political Science
Words: 1305 Length: 4 Pages Document Type: Thesis Paper #: 42565228
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Again, here we see that political disposition is a significant factor in shaping one's position on the subject. Those who support the death penalty tend to take a position of greater trust in the fairness and equality of the government, which is a disposition promoted itself by certain cultural, economic and racial characteristics. From this disposition, a counterargument frequently proposed against the notion of discontinuing the death penalty due to its apparent racial biases cites "a 1987 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that evidence specific to a defendant -- not statistics showing systemwide bias -- is necessary to challenge an individual's death sentence on a racial claim." (Melone, 1) This is to argue that an individual case evaluation, whereupon capital punishment is considered, should inherently protect against the permeation or ethnic, racial or geographical biases. Of course, in order to accept this argument, one must possess a certain degree of faith…

Works Cited:

Carlson, T. (2000). Tucker Carlson: Death Penalty Deserves More Vigorous Debate. CNN. Online at  http://archives.cnn.com/2000/ALLPOLITICS/stories/06/22/tucker.carlson/ 

DPIC. (2005). National Polls. Death Penalty Information Center. Online at

DPIC1. (2009). Financial Facts: Information on Costs of the Death Penalty from DPIC. Death penalty Information Center. Online at  http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org /costs-death-penalty

Gleick, E. et al. (1995). Rich Justice, Poor Justice. Time Magazine. Online at  http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,983050-2,00.html

Death Penalty -- Part One The Death
Words: 665 Length: 2 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 53486141
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Death Penalty -- Part One

"The Death Penalty Costs Too Much" -- George Sjostrom: The arguments presented by Sjostrom follow other similar lines of argument by those who oppose the death penalty. He doesn't take the ethical line or the line that putting a criminal to death doesn't deter crime. He is concerned with dollars and cents. And he alludes to the emotional price society pays for putting a person to death. It costs California taxpayers about $250 million to execute a felon (he bases that on the last 11 executions in California; it includes the cost of the trial, and the other long, drawn-out legal procedures, appeals, new trials) but it costs a lot less to just house a criminal who gets life without the possibility of parole. On top of the high cost of trial and legal fees, Sjostrom claims that there is a kind of "emotional purgatory"…

Death Penalty the Supreme Court
Words: 1237 Length: 3 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 26741978
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Although that case involved jury selection, the Court established a standard for alleging racial discrimination in prosecution. The Court held that the defendant has to show that he is a member of a cognizable racial group, that the prosecutor has acted in a manner having a discriminatory effect, and that the procedure in place allows those who choose to discriminate the leeway to do so. Once a defendant has established a prima facie showing of discrimination, the State then has the burden of proving race-neutrality. (Batson v. Kentucky, 476 U.S. 79, 96-98 (1986)). The clear reasoning of the Batson decision would suggest that since Bass could show that he is an African-American, that African-Americans are disproportionately subject to the death penalty, and that the decision whether to charge a defendant with the death penalty is left to the discretion of the prosecutor, that he has established a prima facie case…

Works Cited

Batson v. Kentucky, 476 U.S. 79 (1986).

Brown v. Board of Education, 347 U.S. 483 (1954).

Plessy v. Ferguson, 163 U.S. 537 (1896).

United States v. Bass, 2001 FED App. 0340P (6th Cir.).

Death Penalty Viewpoint There Are Contradictory Viewpoints
Words: 693 Length: 2 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 57006695
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Death Penalty Viewpoint

There are contradictory viewpoints concerning the death penalty with some viewing it as needed for family closure in capital cases and others viewing it as an excuse where closure is not clearly defined in the arguments. There are also questions of whether the death penalty actually restores communities and families, whether it really serves justice, or whether it is actually a revenge for families and society. The similarity and differences in the viewpoints bring out points of victim complexity, clarity in the word meanings, and how families can be tortured in the probation hearings when offenders request probation review.

(Bandes, Susan) argues that there is no clear definition of closure or the justice system rights to obtain closure in arguments. She claims that some families have found closure if an offender takes responsibility for the crimes committed, but feels the justice system uses closure as an excuse…

Works Cited

Bandes, Susan, Viewpoint 6: The Death Penalty Does Not Fulfill Survivors' Needs for Closure

Stambaugh, Irl and Stambaugh, Gary, Viewpoint 5: Death Penalty Would End Punishment of Victim's Family

Death Penalty Has Been a Long-Contested Issue
Words: 687 Length: 2 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 5665548
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Death penalty has been a long-contested issue among States, legislators, policy makers, and individuals alike. So complicated is the issue that no two opinions appear to be the same. Indeed, the divergence of the various opinions extend to a variety of concerns within the death penalty and the Constitution themselves, including the fairness of capital punishment and decisions relating to it in terms of gender, class, race, and so on. One of the most prominent issues within the death penalty is probably mental illness and retardation. As pointed out by one of the authors to be examined below, the law prohibits imposing the death penalty for persons who are mentally incompetent. The question is, however, how many mentally incompetent persons in fact declare their incompetence?

The case Atkins v. Virginia involves Daryl enard Atkins, who was accused of abduction, armed robbery, and capital murder. After it was revealed that he…

References

Atkins v. Virginia

Human Rights Watch. Executing the Mentally Retarded is Unfair.

Tobolowsky, P.M. Chapter 9: Mental Health and the Death Penalty: Matters of Competency and Culpability.

Death Penalty Viewpoint Summary Convicted Wrongfully for
Words: 667 Length: 2 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 72834499
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Death Penalty

Viewpoint Summary

Convicted wrongfully for the murder of a man by the name Delbert Baker, Juan Roberto Melendez-Colon spent more than seventeen years on death row awaiting his execution. His eventual release came after Mr. Baker's real killer confessed to the said murder. Now a free man, Melendez-Colon adds his voice to the call for the abolition of the death penalty. In his opinion, wrongful conviction cases cannot be resolved using DNA testing. In response to proponents of the death penalty who are somehow convinced that DNA testing could easily resolve persistent cases of wrongful conviction, Melendez-Colon points out that DNA "is quite limited because it is not present in the great majority of murder cases." To back up his assertion, Melendez-Colon observes that since 1973, only 17 of the 139 death row exonerations involved DNA. In his opinion, there is a huge amount of money that the…

Like Melendez-Colon, Philip Brasfield and Carl M. Cannon are also of the opinion that DNA testing cannot help resolve the inherent shortcomings of the capital punishment system. According to Brasfield, although post-conviction DNA testing has been of great significance in helping expose the fallibility of the said system, "DNA tests are useless in cases where no evidence is found at the crime scene." This statement effectively reinforces Cannon's assertion that DNA is largely irrelevant in a significant number of other cases including but not limited to non-rape cases. For this and several other reasons, the authors appear convinced that the execution of innocents cannot necessarily be prevented through the utilization of DNA evidence. In the opinion of both authors, the death penalty should be abolished so as to bring to an end the killing of innocents in the name of justice.

My Opinion on the Topic

It is highly likely that a significant number of people have been wrongfully convicted and subsequently executed since the 1976 reinstatement of the death penalty in the U.S. In my opinion, embracing the utilization of DNA testing (both pre and post-conviction) could help solve some of our capital justice system's fundamental flaws. Given that the said testing has in the past helped exonerate quite a number of death row convicts, its widespread utilization could help solve many more innocent lives. With that in mind, the federal government needs to further increase funding to programs that seek to enhance both the availability and quality of DNA testing. That way, we do not necessarily have to abolish the death penalty.

Death Penalty for Juveniles the
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The research shown to the Supreme Court suggests just the opposite about them (Liptak, 2005).

Third, evidence shows that many teens in jail for serious crimes have significant mental health problems. Representative Henry Waxman (D) of California noted that in his state, one of the most populous in the country, there is little competent psychiatric help for youthful offenders who are incarcerated. He and his staff found that hundreds of teens held in California services were not getting the mental health services they desperately needed (Author not stated, 2005). 70% made suicide attempts while incarcerated, and nearly 75% attacked others (Author not stated, 2005). In spite of such clear evidence of instability, nearly six out of ten California facilities lacked staff with mental health training. Youthful offenders, meanwhile, had a wide range of diagnoses including not only substance abuse but AD/HD, retardation and learning disabilities (Author not stated, 2005). These…

Bibliography

Author not stated. 2005. "Mentally ill California youth await treatment in detention." Child Protection Law Report, Feb. 11.

Liptak, Adam. 2005. "Too young to die?" New York Times, Feb. 14.

Yen, Hope. 2005. "Supreme Court strikes down death penalty for juveniles." AP Worldstream, March 1.

Death Penalty Right or Wrong For Some
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Death Penalty: Right or Wrong?

For some time I have believed that the death penalty is a necessary part of our legal system, for the protection of society as a whole. In forming this opinion, I looked at Ted Bundy, who was convicted of monstrously killing four college sorority sisters and a 13-year-old girl he happened upon while she was walking home from school. He held the poor 13-year-old girl for several days in a deserted pigsty in the hot scrub woods of northern Florida before finally killing her. Some authorities think that he may be responsible for over 100 murders, and not the thirty or so he admitted to before his death. Ted Bundy tried to negotiate his way out of being put to death by hinting that the police could clear a lot more murders, but that he would only talk if his death sentence were reversed. Authorities…

Death Penalty When it Comes
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Justice Kennedy, writing for the majority, warned about broader problems with the capital punishment. "When the law punishes by death, it risks its own sudden descent into brutality, transgressing the constitutional commitment to decency and restraint." He took into account the many dangers of the death penalty and concluded it should be restricted to homicides (Death Penalty Information Center, 2008).

The main question regarding the research for or against capital punishment as a deterrent is whether to continue the death penalty because the findings are inconsistent or to stop it for the same reason. esearchers adelet and Borg (2000), in fact, say that the findings impact how Americans perceive the death penalty. They showed how the conclusions of the research over the past several decades have influenced the debate pro-or con capital punishment. Their literature review in relationship to historical events "suggests changes in the nature of death penalty debates…

References:

Berk, R. (2005) New Claims about Execution and General Deterrence: Deja Vu All over Again? Journal of Empirical Legal Studies 2(2), 303-330

Death Penalty Information Center. Retrieved May 22, 2008.

 http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org /

Dezhbakhsh, H., Rubin, P. & Shepherd, J. (2003) Does capital punishment have a deterrent effect? American Law and Economics Review, 344.