Is the Death Penalty Applied Fairly?

Topics: Crime, Murder, Death Penalty Pages: 3 (1215 words) Published: December 3, 2012
Running head: The Death Penalty

Is the death penalty just and applied fairly?
Michael Wirth
PHI103: Informal Logic
Instructor Philip Bence
2 December, 2012

The Death Penalty
Capital punishment has been used around the world for many thousands of years as a way of enforcing justice when someone has done wrong by what standards that the cultures have. Over the past few centuries capital punishment has started to be questioned by many people in Europe and in the United States. Many people who support the death penalty cite reasons such as deterrence and not wanting to spend money a person who will never be a productive member of society again. Many who are in opposition to the death penalty say that the death penalty is killing innocent people and is actually not saving any money at all and that it is in fact costing too much and that it is wrong to simply kill someone who commits a crime. There are also questions to the fairness of the death penalty and many who question if it is being applied fairly. Both sides of the debate over the morality and legitimacy of capital punishment will be presented in this paper with this author taking one side. While the thought of having someone put to death is not something that anyone would like, the death penalty is the only way for ultimate justice to be administered for victims provided that it is fairly administered.

The cost of the death penalty is reason that many people use as a reason to not use capital punishment but not many people ask why it is so high. The actual cost of the death penalty varies state by state but it averages out to 1.26 million per case (Zimmerman, 2009). This is a staggering cost when you compare it to taking care of an inmate for life, which has a median cost of 740,000 dollars (Zimmerman, 2009). But the question is why is the cost so high. In the 1960’s, the Supreme Court began a wholesale review of the capital punishment system. In 1963, the Supreme Court began imposing...

References: William, T. (2000). WHY THE DEATH PENALTY WORKS. American Spectator. Retrieved from http://web.ebscohost.com/ehost/detail?vid=8&hid=110&sid=86aeb0e4-6b7d-47c4-84cf-cd660ac9583b%40sessionmgr112&bdata=JkF1dGhUeXBlPWlwLGNwaWQmY3VzdGlkPXM4ODU2ODk3JnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#db=aph&AN=3599272
Zimmerman, P. (2009). Statistical Variability and the Deterrent Effect of the Death Penalty American Law and Economics Review. Retrieved from http://web.ebscohost.com/ehost/detail?sid=ee097b5c-6ea9-4cf6-9bb6-a1a87a5f7762%40sessionmgr113&vid=5&hid=110&bdata=JkF1dGhUeXBlPWlwLGNwaWQmY3VzdGlkPXM4ODU2ODk3JnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#db=eoh&AN=1094427
Keil, T. (2006). Capriciousness or Fairness? Race and Prosecutorial Decisions to Seek the Death Penalty in Kentucky. Journal of Ethnicity in Criminal Justice. Retrieved from http://web.ebscohost.com/ehost/detail?vid=6&hid=110&sid=7dc24b7e-8934-4a3a-a770-4fbc9d497bf7%40sessionmgr115&bdata=JkF1dGhUeXBlPWlwLGNwaWQmY3VzdGlkPXM4ODU2ODk3JnNpdGU9ZWhvc3QtbGl2ZQ%3d%3d#db=aph&AN=23226016
Brown, K. (1999). Debating the death penalty. Lincoln Journal Star. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/247869121/13AC357D9272144128/13?accountid=32521
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