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Death Penalty and Life Imprisonment - Essay Example

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Death penalty and life imprisonment Debate on which is more appropriate in the penal systems all around the world, between life in prison and the death sentence has been a controversial issue. This is between the proponents and the opposers of these punishments, as they both have advantages and disadvantages in issues of morality and economic implications for governments…
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Death Penalty and Life Imprisonment
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"Death Penalty and Life Imprisonment"

Download file to see previous pages However, it is disputed because of mistakes made in sentencing that are claimed to be rare. The death sentence is given when there exists conclusive evidence on the guilt of a suspect (Smith). The evidence is usually in the form of DNA, and a plus for the death row inmates is that there is a chance to appeal the decisions to sentence them to death. Therefore, it is argued that any person convicted to death stands a chance to prove their case and plead their innocence allowing them to live. In this case, the claim is that it is extremely difficult to sentence an innocent person to death owing to the numerous appeal opportunities accorded to them. In addition, the presence of DNA testing helps to exonerate many, although not entirely. Therefore, the DNA of the convicted may lead to conviction of many due to wrong time and wrong place occurrences, circumstantial evidence. Thus, the Death sentence is appropriate in ridding the society of people committing capital offences, in spite of doing injustice to some. However, life in prison as a sentence is the viable option as compared to the death sentence as delivers more and reduces the chances of exposing innocent people to risk of dying (procon.org). This is because; life in prison is swift, severe and certain providing justice to the victims of the committed crime. In addition, another reason for the support of death penalty is the cost that the society has to bear concerning maintaining prisoners on life imprisonment (Smith). Therefore, the financial and economic costs of maintaining a prisoner serving life are astronomical to the tune of $50000 a year (Smith). This is more than an individual spends in their normal day-to-day life outside the prison as some earn even less than that. Sentencing such a person to death is easier for the society, as it does not have to shoulder the costs of providing for the needs of the inmates. In addition, the death sentence is more suitable as those sentenced to life in prison are at times released under the context of rehabilitation and overcrowded prisons. This allows them to return to the society and continue with their criminal activities. This way, taking the life of the criminal, ensures with maximum certainty that the crime will not be committed again, but by the same person. However, this is not the case, as there is existence of sentences that subject criminals to life imprisonment with no chance of parole. This way, inmates have way of leaving thus the death sentence is rendered redundant. However, Life imprisonment is the better option of the two due to its deterrent nature, as the death sentence is not a deterrent measure to stopping crime. This is because; only sane people can plan any crime that is punished by death, as they have the time and ability to carry out the plans that end up in the crime (Smith). This way punishing people by having theme serve time in prison where they cannot enjoy their freedom and some rights reduces the chances of similar crimes recurring, either perpetrated by the same person or other members of the society. In addition, life in prison ensures that no more crimes are committed by the government in the name of protecting the safety of the public through executions (Procon.org). This way, it allows resources to be turned to other issues that require attention other than attempting to exhaust legal channels in a bid to save lives. This ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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