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Therefore, unethical practice of capital punishment must be stopped.
In general, research has focused primarily on issues of deterrent efficacy, discrimination, and more recently, the question of innocence. The overwhelming majority of the empirical research has focused on the question of deterrence, largely as a consequence of widely held public beliefs and attitudes that the death penalty serves as an effective deterrent to murder. The following section will examine each of the foregoing areas of research with particular attention being placed on the question of deterrence since it comprises the largest portion of extant empirical research.
Public opinion polls consistently show that the majority of Americans supports the death penalty (Senna & Seigel, 2002). High support triggers legislators to seek the death penalty; or it at least gives the appearance that it is in the best interest of society for them to seek the death penalty. Seeking the death penalty gives the impression that America is tough on crime; it gives the impression that America still believes in the harshest form of retribution; it gives the impression that nothing is wrong with the death penalty and its application; and, it gives the impression that America is in accordance with the American population that supports the death penalty. Although Americans show a high level of support for the death penalty, it can be argued that support is based on abstract or generalized question wording. For instance, even as late as 2002, most polls show strong support for the death penalty in the abstract with a seventy-two percent approval. When alternatives are given, support drops drastically. Support drops to 56% if the alternative is no parole for twenty-five years; support drops even further to 49% if the alternative is no parole ever; support for the death penalty decreases even further to 44% if the
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The main assertion by advocates of the death penalty is that it helps to deter prospective crimes. Another assertion is for exercise of justice. However, even the opponents deem that there is injustice in imposing capital punishment. There is much controversy since opponents indicate that death penalty does not produce deterrence in reality.
Considering the diversified nature of such punishment; some of them are deserved to be mentioned. In ancient and medieval ages crushing by elephants was considered to be one of the most practiced forms of capital punishment. Among the countries who had restored to this practice India might be the most infamous one.
Such crimes are called capital crimes or capital offences and mostly include murder, espionage, treason and sexual crimes. Capital Punishment has been widely practiced in the past where people were hanged to death or their heads chopped off often for small crimes.
As we enter the 21st century, it becomes apparent that many countries step into the new century after shedding off their old skins by discarding practices that seem cruel; Capital punishment is one such practice. Many states have abolished capital punishment as it no longer compliments their stance on certain topics for example; human rights.
Michigan, Alaska, Hawaii, Oregon, District of Columbia, Rhode Island, Wisconsin, Maine, North Dakota, Minnesota, West Virginia, Iowa, and Vermont are the American states/places in which death penalty is prohibited. In all the other American states, death penalty is legal.
By examining the arguments on both sides and working to refute those arguments against it, the author is able to present a coherent and compelling set of arguments for continuing the practice; albeit with a few key adjustments. The question of whether or not a person supports or opposes the death penalty is an issue that attracts a great deal of attention currently in the United States.
These questions, and more, lead to the complexity of the death penalty debate. This paper will explore the moral reasoning for and against capital punishment, whilst taking into account two very different cases where the death penalty was used in the United States.
Only in few states such as Michigan, Alaska, Hawaii, Oregon, District of Columbia, Rhode Island, Wisconsin, Maine, North Dakota, Minnesota, West Virginia, Iowa, and Vermont, it is prohibited whereas in all the other states the death penalty is legal. There are many arguments in favor and against death penalty.
There were many instances where punishments applied were successful in instilling fear in the minds of the people. But when the crime committed crossed the acceptable code of conduct according to the ruling society, punishments had to take a menacing and life snatching form. This was known as capital punishment.