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Death penalty - Research Paper Example

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Name Student number Why should the Death Penalty be abolished The Death penalty is one of the most controversial forms of punishment. Its roots in the context of corporal punishment has been criticized for its harshness and inhumanity; but it has also been lauded for its apparent effectiveness in deterring crime and brandishing corresponding punishment for severe and heinous crimes…
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Download file to see previous pages The criminal justice system is implemented under imperfect conditions. Risks of convicting innocent individuals within the system have been seen all too often. These risks are some of the primary considerations in the opposition of the death penalty – that innocent individuals may be put to death because of this imperfect system. For which reason, this paper now seeks to discuss the abolition of the death penalty. It presents arguments and supporting theories and discussions on the abolition of the death penalty within the criminal justice system. Discussion I believe that death penalty should be abolished because it is an inhumane punishment. “Death destroys an individual’s status and his or her very existence in organized society” (Chenwi, p. 97). In effect, the death penalty is a form of punishment which practically strips a person of his rights and his rightful place in an orderly and peaceful society. The severity of the death penalty as a punishment degrades human beings and strips them of honor. It summarizes and defines their life into one act of violence and deems such life to be unworthy of continuance. And such summary judgment is something which should not be supported The imposition of the death penalty must be prevented because of the criminal justice system is basically imperfect. No matter what evidence is often unearthed from any criminal investigation, to some degree, such evidence cannot often completely prove a person’s commission of a crime. The possibility of convicting a person of a crime he did not commit has been proven true time and again (Cole and Smith, p. 405). The possibility therefore of sending someone to his death for a crime he did not commit is also a strong likelihood. This is a risk we cannot prevent and manage with the death penalty because, unlike imprisonment sentence which can be carried out in jail, carrying out the death sentence is irreversible. On the off chance that a person is indeed later proven innocent, imprisonment affords a person freedom. But death? Death is a one-way ticket. Lang also set forth these same arguments. He argues that there is a distinct possibility that a person who is wrongly convicted of a crime would be sentenced to death. This is a strong possibility which is too grim for me to consider. It would be wrong for us to close our eyes to this grim possibility. Lang discusses the injustices suffered by Michael Blair as a basis for his opposition to the death penalty. He discusses how evidence eventually presented in court successfully proved that Blair was innocent of the crime being charged against him. However, this was after fourteen years spent in death row. This was after fourteen years of emotional trauma – waiting for the possibility of having his head next to the proverbial chopping block. Blair also lost fourteen years of his life – a life which could have been productive in terms of career, family, and social life. Until and unless we can absolutely avoid more ‘Michael Blair’ incidents can we safely consider the possibility of imposing the death penalty as a means of deterring crime and rendering punishment to criminals. It would be difficult to gauge and decide that things would have been better off for people like Michael Blair, but in considering the cases on mentally retarded individuals, being ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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