Capital Punishment On Trial Essay

1720 words - 7 pages

Capital Punishment is an issue that has been argued over from the dinner table inthe average American home the the oval office in the White House for countless amountsof years. The opposing sides each state their claim on why we should, or shouldn't allowthe death penalty to be administered to those criminals who the courts believe should bekilled. 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 withincapital punishment vary from it being morally right or wrong, humane or inhumane, to theexcessive time and money that is spent during appeals and stays of execution. This paperwill focus on the problem of the justice system, and why we should and should not grantnumerous appeals and stays of execution.Capital Punishment has been around since the days of Christ, and its results havenot changed, only the way capital punishment is administered has. States such asCalifornia use the gas chamber as the means to end the convict's life, while Texas andFlorida have used the electric chair in the past, the remedy for death is now by usingleatheal injection to end the convicts life. Death has always been used as a way to detercriminals from engaging in criminal activity. In the days of the old west, a man would behung if he was caught stealing another mans horse, and during the Cold War, death wouldbe handed down if you were convicted of treason against your country in many of thenations involved. Today though, the death penalty is given in a selected amount of murdercases where the jury or judge feels that it is the only way to go about giving the murderer ajust sentence, and that life in prison sentence would be to lenient. In 1995, prisonauthorities saw the largest number of state mandated killings since 1957, and with morethat 3,000 inmates on death row in this country, and several legislative moves to cut theappeals process, a execution boom seems imminent (Bruderhof 1996).Pain. Anger. Frustration. Hatred. These feeble words do not describe the anguishfelt by the families of murder victims. Ted Bundy was responsible for the deaths of morethan fifty young women across the United States (Lamar 34). Bundy was finally sentencedto death by the state of Florida in 1978 after being convicted for the kidnapping and brutalmurder of a 12 year old girl and the deaths of two Florida State sorority sisters. As if theloss of a loved one is not enough for a family to deal with, Bundy remained on death rowfor nearly ten years. Three stays of execution and endless appeals kept Bundy alive foralmost 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 handeddown, then it should be enforced immediately, not as a question of morality, but simply asan act of justice.The death penalty already exists in thirty six states, and given its existence it shouldbe...

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