English 10 1°
8 April 2014
The Death of Capital Punishment
Humans, by nature, strive to preserve life, not end it; it’s this sense of moral that makes us human, and yet, some believe we have the right to take another humans life. Since childhood, we have been taught the indisputable truth that murder is wrong so why is it okay If it’s done so by our government. Capital Punishment, more commonly known as the death penalty is simply an illusion of humane professional murder (Zivot). While capital punishment may or may not deter the world of crime, one person at a time, it does so in a manner that not only abolishes a life but also the humanity of those whose believe in it through its violations, financial costs, and faults; therefore capital punishment should be put to death.
Supporters of this form of this sanction believe that capital punishment does more to protect and benefit society than to harm it, in that it could provide closure to a community or deter that community from future crimes (Kay). Some people would associate the death penalty with the saying “an eye for and eye” in that it provides closure to the affected families (Dobbs). Late Professor of Jurisprudence at Fordham University, Ernest Van Den Haag claims, “Common sense, lately bolstered by statistics, tells us that the death penalty will deter murder... People fear nothing more than death. Therefore, nothing will deter a criminal more than the fear of death” (ProCon.org). Naturally, people fear death, therefore people use this logic to claim that the threat of the death penalty daunts criminals who otherwise might not have been. To summarize, supporters of the death penalty argue that the death of criminals does nothing but bring forth beneficial attributes to society. This can be supported by statistics as far back as 1930 (see fig. 1) but since then, new studies have shown that the murder rate in death penalty states are up to 46% higher than those without. While some may believe that capital punishment may deter crime and bring closure, that doesn’t veto the substantial negative effects of the death penalty.
Admittedly, the death penalty may provide benefits to the families affected by a heinous crime. Nevertheless, capital punishment violates our rights as members of the United States. "Death is... an unusually severe punishment, unusual in its pain, in its finality, and in its enormity... The fatal constitutional infirmity in the punishment of death is that it treats 'members of the human race as nonhumans, as objects to be toyed with and discarded.” says William J. Brennan, Justice of the US Supreme Court (ProCon.org). The eighth amendment states that cruel and unusual punishment shall never be inflicted. This is a phrase describing punishment which is considered unacceptable due to the suffering, pain, or humiliation it inflicts on the person subjected to it. And yet, even with this information, only a few months ago in Ohio, Dennis McGuire...