Death Penalty

Topics: Capital punishment, Murder, Crime Pages: 5 (1848 words) Published: October 17, 2011
Capital Punishment
Capital Punishment can be defined as the sentence of execution for crimes as murder and some other serious crimes, which are punishable by death. Capital punishment is a long debated issue which extends well beyond a question of mere legality. A number of additional factors including ethical, economic, social and religious arguments have and continue to be made for both its definition and its importance. Opinions have certainly been formed for each, and the topic remains very relevant today. There are two central key words when talking about death penalty: cruel and unusual punishment. Cruel can shortly be defined as “disposed to inflict pain or suffering” or something that just plainly causes suffering. In attempting to define cruel and unusual punishment, federal and state courts have generally analyzed two aspects of punishment: the method of and the amount. When demonstrating what death by execution is, it is also very important to consider the process to it. At only 20 years old, Cortne’ Robinson is the youngest man in Texas to be on death row. A journalist from The Marshall News Messenger reports this following case. Robinson broke into the house of Mr. and Mrs. Zabokrtsky. Robinson robbed the couple and killed Mr. Zabokrtsky, as well as raping and kidnapping Mrs. Zabokrtsky. Luckily, Mrs. Zabokrtsky was able to escape out of the trunk of Robinson’s car. This was not Robinson’s first offense, however. In 2007, he was charged with burglary at G.W. Carver Elementary school (Richardson p. 13). The combinations of Robinson’s criminal background with the testimony of Mrs. Zabokrtsky led the jury to the decision of death by lethal injection (Richardson p. 13). The jury found it would be necessary to give him death by lethal injection because the jury states “Robinson would be a future danger in any society” (Richardson p. 9). Without capital punishment, many murderers, much like Robinson, would be let out Scott-free. The death penalty may deter violent crimes and slow down the rate of murders due to the severity of the outcome for the ones whom commit the offense. Elechi, a journalist from African Journal of Criminology and Justice Study states that it “may be a belief that the public executions helped keep violent crime lower” (p. 31). Some would claim that common sense supports the inference that if the threat of the death penalty decreases, the rate of murders will increase. Therefore, if the threat of the death penalty increases, then the homicide rate may decrease. Since society has the highest interests in preventing murder, it should use the strongest punishment available, which is the death penalty. If murderers are sentenced to death and executed, potential murderers may be disinclined to kill others for fear of losing their own life.  The bottom line is people fear death more than anything else. Mostly, they fear death that is deliberately inflicted by law and scheduled by the courts. The threat of the death penalty may deter some murderers which may have not affected their mindset to kill. If one would consider prisoners that already are serving a life sentence and are tempted to murder a prison guard or another prisoner, the only penalty that could discourage them from doing so would be the final penalty: death. Even if they are not frightened by this penalty, they will certainly not be affected by any other punishment. The death penalty can be compared to the way a robber is put in prison. The robbers are put there to prevent further robberies. The same situation occurs for murderers. Vicious murderers must be punished to the highest degree to prevent them from murdering again and to set an example for others who are thinking about taking another person’s life. The punishment of going to prison is not a strong enough sentence for people who murder another. The death penalty is the only way it is going to stop these crimes because prison life provides food,...

Cited: Elechi, O., E. Lambert, and L. Ventura. ""An Examination of Death Penalty Views of Nigerian and U.S. College Students: An Exploratory Study.".” African Journal of Criminology and Justice Studies: AJCJS 2.2 (2006), 101-147. ProQuest Criminal Justice, ProQuest. Web.  3 October 2011.
Halperin, Rick. "Ohio executes Daniel Lee Bedford." (2011), Web. 3 October 2011.
"More Jobs, Not Jails Are Needed In America.” New Pittsburgh Courier  16  Sep. 1995, City Edition: Ethnic NewsWatch (ENW), ProQuest. Web.  3 October 2011.
Richardson, Robin. "Jury sentences Robinson to die. “Marshall News Messenger. 15 March 2011. Web. 3 October 2011.
Scott Kraus.  "Mental health may figure in defense.” McClatchy - Tribune Business News 16 May 2011 ABI/INFORM Dateline, ProQuest. Web.  3 October 2011.
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