Hugo Adam Bedau (Against) Philosopher
The editor effectively displays his position on the death penalty, by announcing it in his very first sentence that “he strongly opposes the death penalty no matter what the crime or criminal.”(loc367) The editor effectively demonstrates his knowledge on capital punishment by recapping the history behind degrees of murder.(loc386) In Pennsylvania 1793, the state divided murder into two categories, first and second degree murder, and to confine the punishment of death to offenders convicted of murder in the first degree. First degree murder is defined to include both premeditated murder and felony murder, that is, any killing in the course. (Loc.388) In America the creation of degrees of murder and the limitation of a death sentence to offenders guilty of first-degree murder amounted to a recognition that not all murderers are equally bad, dangerous, and irredeemable. The editor effectively demonstrates his expert knowledge on capital punishment subject by recapping the history of aggravating factors and how that now takes a big part in the death sentence. The conviction of first degree murder is no longer enough to sentences a person to death. The defendant and the crime must also exhibit so-called “aggravating circumstances” in order to be “death eligible” The law now demands that a jury find at least one aggravating factor to sentence someone to death. (loc401) The editor effectively proves his expert knowledge on lethal injection as he talks about the lethal injection now dominating all other methods of execution, because there is no bodily mutilation, no disfigurement, no delay, no odor, and apparently no pain. An opponent of the death penalty can no longer argue that the death penalty is unconstitutional because it is cruel and unusual punishment. The editor effectively expresses his professional opinion stating that “There is doubt that widespread adoption of lethal injection in The United States and because of this...
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