Lethal Justice Essay

1600 words - 6 pages

There are guilty people who walk free every day. It is appalling is that there are people who are responsible for egregious crimes such as premeditated murder, that walk free or are allowed to live the rest of their lives provided with nourishment and clothing. These same people are the people that tax dollars are spent supporting. Some of these people do not deserve to live after the crimes they have committed. For example, Joe Atkin’s was a man who was sentenced to 10 years in jail for murdering his half brother. His adopted father’s constant pleas for parole were ultimately accepted and Atkin’s was released from his sentence on parole. Atkin’s went on to murder 13 year old Karen Patterson by shooting her repeatedly in her bed. Atkin’s then proceeded to kill his adopted father in cold blood (McAdams 1). There must be a more severe form of punishment equivalent to the cruelty of crimes that people like Joe commit. What other retribution is appropriate for this situation other than capital punishment? The death penalty has been used as a form of capital punishment since the early 1600’s and should still be enforced worldwide (Eddlem 4). The death penalty must be enforced and exercised to the full extent of the law because it lowers the amount of premeditated murders and punishes capital crimes.
Furthermore, premeditated murders are nearly impossible to stop. It is just a truth that when people have the determination to kill, they will find a way to do just that. The death penalty will not stop a man from doing so, nor will it bring the victim back to life. However, it does give justice to the victim’s family and friends as well as punish the murderer for his blatant crime. For every 1,000 murderers, on average, there are 2,000 victims (McAdams 1). That is 2,000 victims whose deaths may have no justifiable cause. Their murderers deserve to be punished in the most severe way possible. This is where the death penalty comes into play. It has been proven that a higher number of executions equates to a lower number of homicides (Dezhbakhash 512). Dezhbakhash also goes on to show the rates of murder by number of executions and analyzes its patterns in The Deterrent Effect of Capital Punishment:
We can identify three distinct periods in Figure 1 : (1) the early 1960s with high (but falling) executions and falling murder rates, (2) 1964 to the mid- to late 1970s with very few executions and rapidly rising murder rates, and (3) 1990 to 2000 with soaring executions and sharply declining murder rates. The pattern during the remaining period (1980-89) is not as clear or persistent, although the two series still have opposite trends. (512)
This evidence makes it clear that execution rates help to deter the number of murders that occur. The death penalty as a form of capital punishment deters homicides by discouraging future premeditated murders from being committed. Most of society fears death, therefore using death as an intimidation factor will...

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