StudentShare
Contact Us
Sign In / Sign Up for FREE
Search
Go to advanced search...

Death Penalty in the united States - Essay Example

Comments (0) Cite this document
Summary
At the beginning of the twenty-first century, the position of the United States on the law and practice of capital punishment is singular. Alone among the Western democracies, state governments in the United States authorize and conduct executions as criminal punishment and show no clear indication of a willingness to stop doing so…
Download full paperFile format: .doc, available for editing
GRAB THE BEST PAPER95.1% of users find it useful
Death Penalty in the united States
Read TextPreview

Extract of sample "Death Penalty in the united States"

Download file to see previous pages Capital punishment is essential in the legal system because punishment should be proportioned to the evil of the offense. Retribution becomes a moral obligation. The offender is to be killed by the state only because he brings death upon himself; but this dead man with a beating heart is to be treated decently right up to the point of gentle termination because he also remains a person, a rational agent of free will. Murderers had previously agreed to submit to the rule of civil authority and partake of its privileges and its responsibilities by engaging with society. Those who violate the laws have broken a trust with the citizenry, which, by exacting a penalty, seeks compensation for an act considered an affront to the purpose for which submission to civil authority was commenced (Bigel 46).
The very high ratio of condemned prisoners to executions in many states-200 to 1 rather than the 40 to 1 in many northern jurisdictions- has meant that there is no longer a clear and proximate relationship between death sentences and executions. More than seven out of ten respondents regard the removal of the threat that "the killer might kill again" as an important benefit of the death penalty, but 68 percent regret that the current system results in "mistaken executions." More than six of ten respondents are concerned about the jurisdictional differences in death sentences and executions, but six of ten also think the system provides "closure" (Colson 27). This set of profoundly mixed feelings about the death penalty suggests that public responses to death penalty surveys might vary importantly by the context and the wording of questions. By contrast, the abolitionists see the impact of executions as a statement of pervasive importance about the relationship between the government and the individual. Abolitionists in the United States view capital punishment as a fundamental political issue; proponents usually assert that the question is neither fundamental nor political.
From a Biblical view, Charles W. Colson, author of the essay The Death Penalty is Morally Just, notes that to be punished "is to be treated with dignity as human beings created in the Image of God" (Colson 62). The death penalty, as a punishment for murder, reaffirms a criminal's humanity by taking on responsibility for their actions. It is contrary to the idea that execution degrades a convict sentenced to death. According to van den Haag (1994),
"[P]hilosophers, such as Immanuel Kant and G.F.W. Hegel have insisted that, when deserved, execution, far from degrading the executed convict, affirms his humanity by affirming his rationality and his responsibility for his actions"( 257).
In spite of benefits and advantages of death penalty, there is a social pressure against this punishment. Still, the death penalty had become an exceptional punishment in all Western democracies by the start of the twentieth century, reserved for only the most serious of offenses, rarely imposed, and regarded as particularly problematic. In all the developed nations, other methods of punishment had replaced the executioner as the principal punishment for serious offenses. Executions remained a ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
Cite this document
  • APA
  • MLA
  • CHICAGO
(“Death Penalty in the united States Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1500 words”, n.d.)
Retrieved from https://studentshare.org/miscellaneous/1531913-death-penalty-in-the-united-states
(Death Penalty in the United States Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1500 Words)
https://studentshare.org/miscellaneous/1531913-death-penalty-in-the-united-states.
“Death Penalty in the United States Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1500 Words”, n.d. https://studentshare.org/miscellaneous/1531913-death-penalty-in-the-united-states.
  • Cited: 0 times
Comments (0)
Click to create a comment or rate a document

CHECK THESE SAMPLES OF Death Penalty in the united States

The Death Penalty Should Be Abolished in the United States

You feel the excruciating pain, each and every nuance of the agony, which comes with the heart-stopping effect of potassium chloride, but you cannot call out because you are completely paralyzed. This is, indeed, a possibility, and a very common one, facing those on death row in the United States today. The issue of death penalty is a contentious one, with very vociferous opinions on either side. However, the death penalty should be abolished in the United States, as it is cruel and unusual punishment. The fact is that the lethal injection, the current mode of implementing the death penalty, is carried often, if not always, carried out by untrained prison staff, without the presence of a doctor. There are a lot of mistakes made,...
7 Pages(1750 words)Research Paper

The Death Penalty in the United States

...? The Death Penalty in the United s Punishment for crimes that are considered cruel and unusual isprohibited by the Eighth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. This amendment is frequently invoked when speaking of the legal merits regarding the death penalty. Utilizing the death penalty is considered by some to be the most heinous and obvious instance of cruel and unusual punishment. Those against the use of capital punishment do not think that the government should be given with the power to kill any of its citizens. Opponents also assert that the practice is overtly costly and racially biased while not realizing the intended outcome. Proponents think it is neither cruel nor unusual, quite the opposite, they think it fair and just...
6 Pages(1500 words)Research Paper

Has the death penalty in the United States run its course

...? Death Penalty in America Death penalty, which is often described as capital punishment, is pronounced on offenders who have committed extremely heinous crimes. It is an ancient practice but in the United States it has faced several controversies in the latter half of the twentieth century (Robertson, 14). Does the death penalty serve any purpose in our current judicial system? Criminal executions were first implemented in our society as a crime deterrent to ensure that the offenders cannot engage in future crimes but time has shown that cost, errors, and effectiveness have led many to believe there are alternatives available. History of Death Penalty Death penalty law was first established way back in eighteenth century B.C. in the Code...
6 Pages(1500 words)Research Paper

The Death Penalty in the United States

...?The Death Penalty in the United s In their efforts to deter crime, many s in the US have adopted the use of the death penalty for most serious offenses like aggravated murder. The assumption behind this is that the fear of death reduces crime. Crimes subject to this penalty and the methods of execution differ between states. As of 1st April, 2008, there was a total of 37 US states that authorized the use of Death Penalty as a form of capital punishment. Despite this high utilization of death penalty, crime rates in the US are still very high and this questions the effectiveness of death penalty in deterring crime. Currently, US states with capital punishment record higher murder rates than those without. This means death penalty has...
2 Pages(500 words)Essay

The Death Penalty in the United States

...? Topic: Lecturer: Presentation: Introduction Death penalty is a premeditated and planned taking away of a human life by the government as a means of punishment for capital offences. It has been used by many countries to punish offenders of such crimes as murder, rape, arson, treason among other serious crimes. However, today it is mostly used to punish first-degree or premeditated murder in the USA. However, due to criticisms by human rights movements and religious groups especially on its inhumane and immoral grounds, many countries especially in the west have abolished death penalty. In America, execution is under the jurisdiction of the states hence some states such as Texas, Kansas, and New Jersey still impose death penalties while...
10 Pages(2500 words)Essay

Death Penalty

...? Death Penalty Death Penalty Capital punishment, also known as the death penalty, has, in the past, been exercised by many jurisdictions (Gaie, 2012). However, these days, only 58 nations actively exercise it and 97 nations have done away with it. The rest, nearly 50 states, have not utilized the law for a decade. They, however, permit it in exceptional situations for instance during wartimes. It is an issue of active controversy in numerous states and countries, and positions can differ in a single cultural region or political ideology. In the European Union (EU) member countries, the European Union Charter of Fundamental Rights incorporated in Article 2 prohibits the use of death penalty (capital punishment) (Gaie, 2012). This paper...
3 Pages(750 words)Research Paper

Discuss at least two of the U.S. Supreme Court rulings in regards to the death penalty and how it has impacted capital punishment in the United States

IMPACT OF THE DEATH PENALTY ON CAPITAL PUNISHMENT Over the years, there have been occasional incidences of execution of criminals for various capital offenses in the country (Bureau of Justice Statistics). This was practiced in various states with numbers varying in individual states. However, there were oppositions to these rulings since some people argued that it was an inhumane way of punishing capital offenders. In the case of Furman v. Georgia, 408 U.S. 153 (1972), there was debate over declaring the death as punishment for rape. After a suspension of the case for four years, it was decided that it was unjust to execute rapists and thus there were reforms throughout Supreme Courts invalidating this law. In fact, it was agains...
1 Pages(250 words)Essay

Death Penalty in the United States

...: Northeastern University Press. Bessler, one of the foremost authorities on international law and human rights, examines the death penalty in the United States vis-à-vis the Eighth Amendment. Bessler argues, throughout the book, that the American death penalty is not only cruel but also unusual. Bessler claims that the United States’ persistence with the death penalty is simply an escapist measure to avoid dealing with its socioeconomic problems. Boys, S. (2010). The Death Penalty: An Unusual Punishment America is Inflicting upon...
4 Pages(1000 words)Assignment

Death Penalty Subject of Debate in United States

...Death penalty or capital punishment has been a major issue of controversy for several years. While thirty countries have abolished it since 1990, China, the Democratic Republic of Congo, the United States, and Iran remain major executioners in the world (Derechos, n.d). China has performed more than 3400 executions in 2004 which amounts to more than 90% of worldwide executions (Wikipedia). US performed 60 executions in 2005. Some consider it an inhuman punishment, while others feel a murder warrants nothing less than death for the murderer. People argue their point on various grounds, like the moral, philosophical, religious and the human rights. Debate continues whether it is an appropriate form of punishment and this paper will argue...
7 Pages(1750 words)Case Study

The Controversies in the Death Penalty in the US

In 2003 Amnesty reported 1,146 executions in 28 countries, 88% of them in just 5 countries: The People’s Republic of China 726, Iran 108, the U.S. 65, Vietnam 64, and Saudi Arabia 52 (Netipedia.com, 2006). The U.S. went on to carry out 59 executions in 2004, 60 in 2005, 53 in 2006 and 11 until March 2007 (Death Penalty Information Center, 2007). Today, the death penalty has been abolished in the vast majority of democracies in Europe and Latin America, while it is still retained in most democracies in Asia and Africa, the U.S., Guatemala, and the countries of the Caribbean (Netipedia.com, 2006).

As on April 2, 2007, there were 38 states in the U.S. with the death penalty and 12 without. Between 1976 and 2007 there...
14 Pages(3500 words)Case Study

The Constitutions of the United States of America and the United Kingdom

The principal characteristic of a functioning democracy is the separation of powers. The concept of separation of powers is complex, although it may seem to be simple. This is because it consists of expressive and rigid components. The US Constitution represents the operational capability of the notion of separation of powers. It operates on three functions of the government. First, the executive implements legislation and supervises the administration over the state. Secondly, the legislature enacts the legislation and monitors the work of the executive and lastly, the judiciary interprets the legislations to apply land laws3.

The British Constitution is an unwritten constitution. Therefore, the limitations of the orga...
7 Pages(1750 words)Essay

United States Foreign Policy from 1945-1991

American Presidents presiding over some key events in history, such as the Cuban Missile Crisis, The Cold War, The Vietnam War, etc., were hindered from acting as public representatives due to pressure from the military-industrial complex. John Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson, Ronald Reagan, George Herbert Walker Bush, and George W. Bush – all of them were subject to these opposing interests. But eventually, the corporate-government nexus proved too powerful; and in this sense, American Presidents after the Second World War were largely restricted and powerless to uphold their higher personal values. Most of the strategic moves on part of the United States after the end of the Great War were directly in response to an anticipated th...
11 Pages(2750 words)Essay

The United Kingdom and World War I

It had shown its ability to survive a war and remained a powerful nation of the world (Hardie, Graham, and Kofman).
Almost all the nations in Europe had suffered economically due to the First World War. Most of the European nations were subjected to economic burdens imposed by the war. After the end of the war, the European governments had to make rehabilitation efforts, in respect of the cities destroyed in the war. In addition, they had to provide medical facilities to the soldiers who had been wounded in the war. These governments had to pay pensions to the soldiers, widows, and relatives of the dead soldiers. Moreover, they had to repay the public and foreign debts, and the interest on such debts. These constituted the ad...
6 Pages(1500 words)Assignment

Law Studies: Disposition after the Death

One of the first things that Abelard needs to do is to make sure his wishes are expressed in his will. He may also want to name a close and trustworthy friend to be the executor of his will such that that individual may interview the children of Abelard at the time of his death in order to make a subjective judgment as to whether the children are in fact followers of the Christian faith or if they are only claiming to be. In the event that the children have deceased, then Abelard’s furniture is to go to a museum that may also be executed by Abelard’s chosen executor. In addition to naming the executor, it is critical that Abelard ensure that communication regarding his exact intentions is in detail, within the will and...
7 Pages(1750 words)Assignment

Death Penalty: Does it Serve as a Deterrent to Future Crime

Animal instincts are directed towards self-preservation and it is the law of nature that a stronger and healthier individual has more chances of living than his weaker counterpart. The survival of the fittest has now been established as a ground reality according to Darwinian philosophy. If we eliminate our civilized thought process, it emerges as a stark reality that we would not desist from attacking another living person or animal when we are overcome by the basic needs of food, shelter, and clothing. In times of natural disasters like earthquakes, wars and floods, and manmade disasters like war, it is not uncommon to witness ravaged populations shedding the façade of civilization and resorting to violence in order to fu...
9 Pages(2250 words)Case Study

The United States Supreme Court

The Court, consisting of nine lifelong justices, bears complete authority over the Federal courts but has lesser power over those of the states. It has the power of “last word” on decisions made by these Federal courts and makes the rules that these courts have to follow in their procedures (Wagman, 1993). In addition, all Federal courts must abide by the decisions laid down by the Supreme Court, as well as the United States Constitution. With respect to state courts, the interpretations and decisions that the Supreme Court makes apply, but the Court is limited to interpreting and changing Federal laws, not state laws. Thus, the Supreme Court cannot change conditions of state constitutions or interpret laws made by ind...
10 Pages(2500 words)Coursework

Death of a Salesmen: Tragedy or Not

The diversity of the issues that have been subtly raised in his work and the way each of them has been treated in his various works have helped the author achieve the literary acclaim that he rightly deserves. The author has succinctly shown through the protagonist of the novel, Willy Loman, that the life is not a bed of roses but fraught with tragedies that force one to realize that mortality and pain are part and parcel of life It is a sensitively written play that depicts the dual nature of the life of a common man. While the play can be treated as a tragedy in the context of modern literature, some critics have contested the same under Aristotle’s interpretation of tragedy. 

Aristotle in 330BC had defined...
6 Pages(1500 words)Essay

Effects of the United States of America Troops in South Korea

Despite the few negative incidences of crime committed by the United States of America’s security troops that were deployed in the country on a peacekeeping mission.
Since the war in Korea began in the early nineteen fifties, the United States has stationed tens of thousands of soldiers, mostly the United States’ army personnel, in South Korea. Through the assistance of the South Korean troops and other neighboring governments, the American troops have been able to guard and offer maximum security to South Korean people. In line with the argument of James (2003), ‘most of the military bases in South Korea are relatively isolated’ thus the need for much attention from the troops so as to ensure maximum...
10 Pages(2500 words)Assignment

Immigration and Its Impact on the United Kingdom

For example, for farming communities, fertile and well-watered land has been a pull factor in migration. Business opportunities and political stability are also examples of pull factors.
Since the turn of the 20th century, Great Britain and Northern Ireland have experienced a great influx of foreigners migrating into the country due to pull or push factors. There have been different waves of migrations to the United Kingdom, which has had different impacts. Because of this, the United Kingdom has had to respond in several ways, which includes coming up with new acts on immigration, nationality, and providing asylum to refugees.1 However, the topic of migration to the United Kingdom has attracted different political views and...
23 Pages(5750 words)Assignment

The Death Penalty in the United States

... The Death Penalty in the United States Punishment for crimes that are considered cruel and unusual is prohibited by the Eighth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. This amendment is frequently invoked when speaking of the legal merits regarding the death penalty. Utilizing the death penalty is considered by some to be the most heinous and obvious instance of cruel and unusual punishment. Those against the use of capital punishment do not think that the government should be given with the power to kill any of its citizens. Opponents also assert that the practice is overtly costly and racially biased while not realizing the intended outcome. Proponents think it is neither cruel nor unusual, quite the opposite, they think it fair...
6 Pages(1500 words)Research Paper
sponsored ads
We use cookies to create the best experience for you. Keep on browsing if you are OK with that, or find out how to manage cookies.

Let us find you another Essay on topic Death Penalty in the united States for FREE!

Contact Us