The death penalty is part of capital punishment
The death penalty is part of capital punishment
which is a state-sanctioned form of punishment.
It is associated with putting a person to
death through execution. There are a wide range criminal activities referred to
as capital crimes that are punished using
the death penalty. They include genocide, murder, war crimes, treason
and crimes against humanity. In the United States, a death penalty is a legal form of punishment in more than thirty states, and it is a penalty that dates back to
the country as a colony of the British government. The United States is considered as the only western country that
applies the death penalty. The United States went as far as developing lethal
injection as a form of capital punishment. Although
the death penalty is a common form of sentencing, it has grown to
be an issue of controversy whereby many nations and states are against it. This
paper will explore the death penalty as used in the United States (Oppose the Death Penalty, 2017).
The death penalty is legally
provided for in the bill of rights in the eighth amendment which offered
prohibition for cruel methods of punishment. It was
based on previous, harsh and cruel methods used for capital punishment
such as execution by the use of a firing squad. The Fifth Amendment was then drafted with an inclusion of the death
penalty as a means of capital punishment.
However, for the sentence to be passed,
it had to be indicted by a grand jury. The fourteenth amendment of the
constitution specifies that a due process of the law for the deprivation of
life has to take place (The Death Penalty should be abolished, 2017).
The death penalty has been met by a
lot of opposition. Many people believe
that the sentence deprives an individual the right to their own life. Some factors make the death penalty
unnecessary. One of the main reason is that there are alternative measures that can be
used for sentencing. Life imprisonment without parole is one of them.
Since cases associated with capital punishment are minimal and sometimes rare,
offering life in prison instead of the death penalty is a better alternative.
It preserves life. Another reason that the death penalty needs to be stopped because sometimes cases end up with
the conviction of innocent people. A good example is where suspects have been convicted because of lack of adequate technology
for examining evidence in the past. Current technologies associated with
forensic science have uncovered cases form the past where people were
wrongfully convicted. There is a high risk of executing innocent people which
is morally incorrect. Many people have been wrongfully
convicted because of insufficient evidence to exonerate them form cases.
Morally speaking, the death penalty becomes a very unethical way of passing judgment
(The Death Penalty should be
is that there is a lot of racial
disparities when it comes to the death penalty. Race issues see more African Americans
convicted and executed than any other racial group. The moral standing of the death penalty about
racism is the death penalty makes it a very unattractive and unethical system
of justice in the society. Another factor is
associated with how wealth and affluence influence
sentencing. Wealthy people can have
better representation. Wealthy people have a higher chance of avoiding the
death penalty that poor people. The above are reasons as to why the death
penalty does not represent justice in the society. It is a system that is greatly influenced by other negative aspects
of the society (Oppose the Death Penalty, 2017).
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