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Capital Punishment Debate - Essay Example

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This is a dialogue between and advocate of capital punishment and a protester against capital punishment. Both parties make valid points to their cause and offer excellent points for each side of this debate.
Capital Punishment Advocate: Capital punishment deters crime because criminals will not want to risk an execution sentence…
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Capital Punishment Debate
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Capital Punishment Debate Your college Your June 18, 2006 Capital Punishment Debate This is a dialogue between and advocate of capital punishment and a protester against capital punishment. Both parties make valid points to their cause and offer excellent points for each side of this debate.
Capital Punishment Advocate: Capital punishment deters crime because criminals will not want to risk an execution sentence. Capital punishment puts the fear of death into criminals and emphasizes that there will not be a chance for rehabilitation. Dangerous criminals, like murders, would fear death because execution is permanent. Statistics have shown that in states with the death penalty, there has been a decline in murders. "Since 1994, states that have executed murderers have experienced the most rapid decline in homicide rates while states without capital punishment have seen an increase in murders (Tucker, 2001)."
Capital Punishment Protester: People may fear death, but fear outweighed by anger toward another person is enough to push the criminal over the edge. A strong rage will inhibit a criminal's judgment and a murder will occur regardless of capital punishment. Studies may show a decline in murders in states with capital punishment but these numbers are a coincidence. Statistics have also shown that capital punishment does not deter criminal activity. "Consider the twenty-seven states where at least one execution occurred during the sample period. Executions deter murder in only six states. Capital punishment, however, actually increases murder in thirteen states, more than twice as many as experience deterrence. In eight states, capital punishment has no effect on the murder rate (Shepherd, 2005, pg 2003)."
Capital Punishment Advocate: Capital punishment also makes law-abiding citizens safe. Execution of the criminal keeps the criminal from re-offending because an execution is permanent and the criminal will not be on the streets again. Future lives are saved because the criminal cannot harm another person after the prison sentence.
Capital Punishment Protester: This may be true, but there is also a down side to executing a convicted murder. Mistakes can occur and innocent people convicted of criminal activity will be executed. Does this not make the state any more than a murder Those who sit by and watch the justice system murder those believed to be murders are not any better than murders themselves.
Capital Punishment Advocate: The phrase "an eye for an eye" describes the need for capital punishment the best. If a criminal commits a murder then the murder forfeits his or her life. Capital punishment offers retribution to the victims of the crime - the murder victim and the family of the murder victim deserves justice. Capital punishment also makes the victim's family feel safe because the murderer cannot seek revenge on the family for prosecution and conviction after jail time is served.
Capital Punishment Protester: You are right. The victim and his or her family should have retribution for what was done to them, but at what expense Like I said before, there is a chance that the wrong person, an innocent person, can be wrongfully convicted. Does our society want to take the chance of executing and innocent person for a crime Jail time is less expensive then execution and if there is a mistake and an innocent person is sent to jail then the situation can be remedied. Do we need to execute murderers I think execution is unnecessary and that life in prison is an appropriate punishment.
Capital Punishment Advocate: Murderers can still commit murder within the confines of prison. Committing murder in prison is just as wrong as murdering law-abiding citizens. Criminals that have committed lesser crimes should not have to fear for their lives while paying for their crimes.
Capital Punishment Protester: The job of the law enforcement officers and the warden is to prevent an altercation in the prison that could result in the deaths of inmates. Disposing of convicted murderers in order to prevent unwanted prison deaths is not the state's job.
Capital Punishment Advocate: Regardless, Capital punishment is necessary to deter criminal activity. The state can have the option of capital punishment as a conviction but the punishment does not have to occur. The idea that capital punishment could be sentence is enough to deter the criminal from committing a crime.
Capital Punishment Protester: If the punishment is available for use then capital punishment will be used. Capital punishment does not deter the crime but makes murder of criminals legal for the state.
References
Shepherd, J. M. (2005). DETERRENCE VERSUS BRUTALIZATION: CAPITAL PUNISHMENT'S DIFFERING IMPACTS AMONG STATES.Michigan Law Review,104(2),203-255. Retrieved June 18, 2006, from Proquestdatabase. (Document ID:927286821).
Tucker, W. (2003) "Capital Punishment Reduces Murder Rates." Does Capital Punishment Deter Crime. Ed. Roman Espejo. San Diego: Greenhaven Press. Opposing Viewpoints Resource Center. Thomson Gale. Apollo Group. 18 June 2006 . Read More
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