The Death Penalty Argument Essay

2015 words - 8 pages

The Death Penalty Argument

"A young girl by the name of Faith Hathaway had been kidnapped in
Mandeville. Two boys - - we later found out their names to be Robert
L. Willie and Joseph Vaccaro - - kidnapped the girl outside of a local
lounge there. And brought her up here. They raped her up the hill
here. We're at Frickie's cave in Washington Parish outside of
Franklinton. And then they blindfolded her and they beat her up there.
They blindfolded her, made her walk down the hill. Come up would say
another hundred yards down into the bottom of the cave, raped her and
beat her, kicked her some more. Managed to drop her purse and
belongings up here about 100 yards or so and then brought her down in
here where we're standing now. And raped her and killed her. Raped her
again. Did some very vile things after she was dead also." (Mike
Varnado Interview).

Ever since the dawn of urban-development crime and petty-thievery have
become factors of this capitalized society. Many people, from our
ancestors - through to today's voting public - have debated over the
type of punishment criminals receive for the crimes they commit. Our
society has come to the conclusion that petty crimes should receive
short-term imprisonment; but the debate on horrendous acts of
violence, murder, has not been so easy to resolve. Many of us propose
using the oldest form of punishment known to mankind - Capital
punishment. Others argue life imprisonment where criminals can reform
and apologize for their actions. People have gone-as-far as saying
that the death penalty is too extreme.

To be fair to the families of murder victims, especially the family of
Faith Hathaway; and the families of the accused - I can't help but
stress that the death penalty is a viable and just form of punishment;
when it is implemented without prejudice.

Over the centuries the Church have taken both sides on the endless
debate of the death penalty. In 1974, out of a commitment to the value
and dignity of human life, the U.S Catholic Conference, by a
substantial majority, voted to declare its opposition to capital
punishment. The issue of capital punishment involved both "profound
legal and political questions" as well as " important moral and
religious issues" (Bernardin 1978). And so we find that the death
penalty continues to provoke public controversy and to raise moral
questions that trouble many. In Pope John Paul II's Evangelium Vitae,
he announced the Church's near total dislike to the death penalty. The
Pope wrote that execution is only appropriate " in cases of absolute
necessity, in other words, when it would not be possible otherwise to
defend society. Today, however, as a result of steady improvement in
the organization of the penal system, such cases are rare, if not
practically nonexistent"(Pope John Paul II). The...

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