The Irony of Capital Punishment
Capital punishment has been a part of our justice system since the beginning. For many years the controversy of the death penalty has created social issues that question the validity and fairness based on concerns of moral and human rights. Even though many other nations use this form of justice, the fact that the United States views itself as a leader of human rights brings question to whether we are practicing what we preach. Nevertheless, the majority of US citizens are in support of the death penalty but does that make it rational? In the following paragraphs I will discuss my opinions on capital punishment and talk about issues concerning the death penalty as a deterrent to crime, should it be abolished and whether should youths convicted of violent crimes receive the death penalty. I will also explain how the irony of capital punishment makes it an issue of ethics having that both sides of this issue have valid positions that will keep the idea that as long as there is crime, capital punishment is here to stay whether we like it or not. One of the main purposes of capital punishment is to prevent other violators from committing violent crimes; yet and still crime rates remains relatively high in the United States. I feel as though when people participate in acts of violence, especially murder, the thought of some sort of extreme punishment is considered. In an article, The States and the Death Penalty by David C. Nice, he informs how conservatives feel severe penalties are needed to deter crimes and that liberals believe that some crimes are due to forces beyond an individuals control and can be rehabilitated. On the other hand, there are some criminals that do not care about the fate of their own lives and in some cases commit suicide after they have killed. Once this has happened capital punishment is no longer a deterrent but just another form of retribution. The fact is the death penalty is not an efficient way to deter crime and I believe saying that it does deter crimes is “sugar coating” the issue. We would like to think that if people knew they would be extremely punished for heinous crimes, violence would cease, but in a world with no remorse capital punishment is a solution to settle the score.
My position on the death penalty is parallel to the majority of most citizens. I do believe that it is necessary in certain cases, but there should certainly be fairness across all margins to prevent specific groups, such as the poor and minorities, to not be subjected because of inadequate defenses. The article, The Death Penalty in the United States and Worldwide, from the text points out that “poor people cannot afford to hire the best lawyers, but must rely on court-appointed attorneys, who typically are overworked and underpaid” (pg 177). Also criminals who are proven to be mentally ill should be exempt. Other scenarios, however, call for the merciless alternative of justice; for example individuals involved in mass murders such as shootings, bombings and other terror attacks are a major threat to society and should be put to death. Life is so precious and valuable to me and someone with no regard for the lives of innocent people to easily kill is inhumane; therefore should not be able to walk this earth with mankind. I also feel that criminals who assassinate important figures such as the president should also get the death penalty. I do not feel the death penalty should be abolished mainly because it can deter acts of retaliation. Families of killed victims will always seek justice and the death penalty may be the only way they feel justice is served. Without capital punishment families may feel the need to put the law in their own hands. For those who are in favor of the death penalty feel that justice is practiced when people suffer for their wrongdoings based on the level of crime. Each criminal should get what their crime deserves and in the case of a murderer what their...
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