Capital Punishment On Trial Essay

1850 words - 7 pages

Capital Punishment on Trial

Capital Punishment is an issue that has been argued over from the dinner table in

the average American home the the oval office in the White House for countless amounts

of years. The opposing sides each state their claim on why we should, or shouldn't allow

the death penalty to be administered to those criminals who the courts believe should be

killed. Each argument has very valid reasons on why the death penalty is right and wrong,

and they both have convincing points to prove their argument. The social problems within

capital punishment vary from it being morally right or wrong, humane or inhumane, to the

excessive time and money that is spent during appeals and stays of execution. This paper

will focus on the problem of the justice system, and why we should and should not grant

numerous appeals and stays of execution.

Capital Punishment has been around since the days of Christ, and its results have

not changed, only the way capital punishment is administered has. States such as

California use the gas chamber as the means to end the convict's life, while Texas and

Florida have used the electric chair in the past, the remedy for death is now by using

leatheal injection to end the convicts life. Death has always been used as a way to deter

criminals from engaging in criminal activity. In the days of the old west, a man would be

hung if he was caught stealing another mans horse, and during the Cold War, death would

be handed down if you were convicted of treason against your country in many of the

nations involved. Today though, the death penalty is given in a selected amount of murder

cases where the jury or judge feels that it is the only way to go about giving the murderer a

just sentence, and that life in prison sentence would be to lenient. In 1995, prison

authorities saw the largest number of state mandated killings since 1957, and with more

that 3,000 inmates on death row in this country, and several legislative moves to cut the

appeals process, a execution boom seems imminent (Bruderhof 1996).

Pain. Anger. Frustration. Hatred. These feeble words do not describe the anguish

felt by the families of murder victims. Ted Bundy was responsible for the deaths of more

than fifty young women across the United States (Lamar 34). Bundy was finally sentenced

to death by the state of Florida in 1978 after being convicted for the kidnapping and brutal

murder of a 12 year old girl and the deaths of two Florida State sorority sisters. As if the

loss of a loved one is not enough for a family to deal with, Bundy remained on death row

for nearly ten years. Three stays of execution and endless appeals kept Bundy alive for

almost a decade, when his victims lives were untimely and viciously taken from them

(Lamar 34). Many in fovor of the death penalty feel that if a sentence of death is handed

down, then it should be enforced immediately, not as a question of...

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