Living On Death Row Essay

2026 words - 8 pages

  Capital punishment has been a largely debatable topic over its long past and probably one of the most recognizable topics in history as well, due to those who think it may be too costly, to those who think it’s not enforced enough. Since the days of fighting gladiators all the way up to the age of texting and Facebook, the use of the death penalty has gone down tremendously but is in fact still used today.
  Some people think it is inhumane to kill a human being and is just an act of revenge for the criminal’s actions. While others think it is only fair to execute criminals on death row to punish them for what they did, saying that since such murderers took a life that their lives should be taken in return. The fact that they get to live the rest of their lives being able to have limited daily exercise, meals, clothing, appliances, and get to be outside even though they took someone’s life is not right in my opinion. Basically the only thing taken away from them is freedom. Maybe that’s all that is needed in some cases, then again maybe not. In my opinion the death penalty should be used in every state as a maximum punishment for the criminal’s actions. That way criminals know what the result very well could be for their actions.
  One major debate on capital punishment is the whether or not it deters crime rates. The Death Penalty Information Center says that criminologists did a recent study on whether or not capital punishment deters crime rates stating, “87% of the expert criminologists believe that abolition of the death penalty would not have any significant effect on murder rates” (Radelet and Lacock). But then another study reported by Death Penalty Information Center shows that the percentage of murder rates were consistently lower in the states without the death penalty over the states with it (“Deterrence”). So given the information from the studies, in my opinion it does deter crime rates. As one of the biggest topics regarding the death penalty, it will continue to be a controversial debate due to personal opinions and beliefs.
  The time spent on death row can be quite long depending on the case. Inmates usually spend anywhere from 6 to 10 years on death row before actually being executed, but can be known to spend over 20 years (Death Penalty Information Center). The reason capital punishment takes so long to carry out is for a couple of reasons. One is that the appeals process has many steps that can take up quite a bit time. Each state has a different process when it comes to the death penalty but they are all very similar. “The other reason it takes so long is because it is the maximum punishment, and there can’t be any errors during the process (Layers.com).” No state wants to be known for wrongfully executing a criminal.
  The direct appeal is an appeal given to everyone that is sentenced to death. The appeal is made to the state’s highest court in which someone can seek an appeal from a conviction and death sentence....

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