Opposition Against Death Penalty Essay

1790 words - 7 pages

The predominant school of thought in the American populace lies with the vigorous acceptance for the execution of murderers. While the majority of Americans tend to believe in the inherent right of the state to exact capital punishment on suspected murderers, an increasing opposition to the death penalty can be seen both within the US and globally. The supporters believe that by killing the criminals, the country can be a safer place at the same time as discouraging future criminals. But, as facts continue to prove, enforcing the death row has little to no effect in the deterrence of criminals and instead, can leave innocent people hanging from a noose. The whole system of capital punishment is visibly flawed as its ability to execute the real criminals based upon DNA evidence continues to fail. Also, by killing criminals instead of using life imprisonment, the government continues to waste life and morally corrupt the public by settling random violent acts with systematic violent acts. Although some believe that murderers and cold-blooded killers should be immediately assigned the death penalty, death row should not be used as its process contains several flaws and it degrades the value of human life when alternative actions can be taken.
From a historical standpoint, the use of capital punishment has survived through the ages, starting during the rule of Hammurabi in the Babylonian area. His Code dictated the earliest forms of the death penalty, which applied to a broad scope of punishments all under a single law, like, “an eye for an eye”. Developing and/or conservative countries, mostly located in Asia, enforce the death penalty for various crimes, such as adultery, rape, kidnapping, and treason. These countries, although part of the UN, have decided against the abolishment of capital punishment. Some, like the US have entered a nonbinding agreement on the moratorium of the death penalty, but since it is non-binding, the nations continue to execute. However, most retentionist countries, those who continue the use of capital punishment, do not apply the death row for all crimes, “Execution is the most suitable penalty for those who have deliberately committed murder” (Williams 17). The majority of those retentionist nations do not use the death penalty unless murder of any kind is involved. Some countries do not use the death penalty unless high crimes, such as instigating war, are committed by the felon. Ordinary crimes, such as theft, robbery, or murder are not dealt the death row card, and instead have varying degrees of punishment, the highest form being life imprisonment with parole. Not all retentionist countries carry out the executions and have not used the death penalty for the last decade or so, while those countries who enforce the death penalty do so avidly, “The United States, China, Iran, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia in 2012 ranked the top 5 countries with executions, which superseded the number of executions in the rest of the...

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