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Assessment Artifact: The Death Penalty

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Assessment Artifact: The Death Penalty
Assessment Artifact: The Death Penalty
Apart from a short time in the mid-to-late 20th century when a freeze on capital punishment was ordered by the U.S. Supreme Court, this system of punishment has been in constant use in the United States for most of its history. Proponents and opponents have always been at odds over whether the practice should be continued or abolished completely. Lining up on one side are those who believe that the practice deters crime and is cheaper than warehousing a criminal for life in a maximum-security prison and lining up on the other side are those that believe the practice is inhumane and fraught with inconsistencies which make it antiquated and a barbaric form of punishment. Even though the United States
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Opponents of the practice most often utilize moral or legal grounds as the basis for their arguments or in some cases a combination of the two. Most often cited in the arguments against the use of the death penalty are the contentions that the use of the death penalty constitutes cruel and unusual punishment as prohibited by the Eighth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. This argument is the one which was used in the 1972 case of Furman v. Georgia which alleged that Georgia’s death penalty statutes constituted cruel and unusual punishment and led to a temporary moratorium on the use of the death penalty until state legislatures came up with concise procedures, in the words of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Warren Burger, “legislative bodies may seek to bring their laws into compliance with the Court’s ruling by providing standards for juries and judges to follow in determining the sentence in capital cases or by more narrowly defining the crimes for which the penalty is to be imposed” (Banner …show more content…
This fact alone is enough to make most nations embarrassed for the United States. The U.S. occupies the middle of the list with significantly less executions than its nearest larger competitor Pakistan but still more than Somalia whose government is in shambles because of decades of genocidal civil war. Another important factor is that most of the nations on the list, apart from China and North Korea, are predominantly Muslim nations who execute criminals for violations of religious laws as well as criminal ones which probably account for many of the executions carried out in those nations. I personally believe in the death penalty for several reasons. I think it’s much more inhumane to force someone to spend their entire life without freedom and I think I don’t think it’s fair to taxpayers. No-one deserves to spend a lifetime behind bars as that is maximum suffering whereas execution provides a swift end. Our prison systems are clogged and it’s partly because of the profit being made but also because of misplaced compassion and empathy. This will lead to further problems down the line if we don’t harden up and get serious about how we handle the most heinous criminals

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