To Kill Or Not To Kill

1271 words - 6 pages

The development and practice of capital punishment is a lengthy and arduous journey. Perhaps, more so, is the argument itself surrounding the act. To begin, capital punishment is the execution of an offender sentenced to death after conviction by a court of law of a criminal offense ("Capital Punishment"). Britain's influence on America's use of the death penalty began in the early 1600s. Simple acts such as denying "God" or retaliating against one's parents subjected an individual to death. Of course, as time passes, the guidelines of capital punishment have changed. In modern society, crimes of murder, kidnapping and treason have become the principles for extreme penalty. With the changing ...view middle of the document...

In his analysis of the multiple regression technique, David Mulhausen interprets the data and concludes it effects on the deterrence of capital punishment.
As the three probabilities surge - arrest, sentencing, or execution - the crime rate deflates. For each execution, on average, there are three fewer murders. Another resulting factor is the shortening waits of time for execution. For each additional 2.75-year reduction in the death row wait, one murder is prevented (Mulhausen).
Next, the cost of an execution is less than keeping an offender in prison with LWOP [Life without Parole]. On average, in the State of California, LWOP costs $90,000 per inmate every year. There are also contributing factors such as maximum security, costly appeals, and extra-curricular activities that increase the cost to $57.5 million annually for just one inmate (DPIC.com).
On the contrary, the adversaries proclaim that judicial execution does not inhibit crime. The use of capital punishment as a deterrent to crime is false for many reasons. To start, many murderers are unaffected by the threat of death due to their disposition. "Intense crimes are often unplanned, and stem from emotional stress, influences of alcohol and drugs, and this is when logical thinking is suspended (Fridell 66)." In addition, premeditated murders typically cause the criminal to concentrate on detection, arrest, and prosecution. The threat of even the severest form of punishment will not discourage those who expect to escape detection and arrest. While fear of punishment does not deter most potential murderers, opponents say, the actual enforcement of LWOP does prevent harm (Fridell 72). In addition to isolating violent criminals with LWOP, it punishes the convicts more severely than death itself. Every day an inmate is subjected to his or her cell, the constant loneliness requires them to confront their heinous crime. What better punishment is there? Death will only put the punishment to an end. Another contributing factor to prove the ineffectiveness of the penalty and deterrence are the studies conducted by comparing murder rates in states with executions and without executions. The National Research Council did a study between California, Texas and New York between 1974 and 2009. The homicide rates were identical; they went up at and declined at the same time. However, Texas had 447 executions; California followed with 13; and lastly, New York with zero. Obviously, the death penalty was not the effect of the declining murder rates. In the same study, the conductors analyzed the U.S. and Canada's murder rates. The results were conducive to the study with the three states. The murder rates were symmetrical with each other, yet Canada had no executions since 1962. After the reestablishment of capital punishment in the U.S., rates were at a high, while Canada's rates were in decline (National Research Council).
Moreover, the...

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