Is it a question of morality or is
it our responsibility as humans to filter out the evil from our society? For
decades people have debated whether Capital Punishment should be practiced by
our Government. (5)”Capital punishment also called the death penalty is execution,
as a permanent punishment for a crime often called a capital offence or a capital crime.
Reserved for only the tyranny of evil men, it's use can be dated back to
Eighteenth Century B.C. under the rule of King Hammaurabi of Babylon.
Today 40 out of 50 states currently
use Capital Punishment as a form of justice. This judicial practice has
undergone many changes and is practiced in a few different ways. Much like it
did in the colonies, Capital Punishment varies from state to state. In New York execution is
carried out by means of lethal injection. Other methods include electrocution,
firing squad, hanging and the gas chamber. Methods of execution are different
depending on where you go. In the time we live in only the harshest crimes are
punishable by death. Generally any type of intentional murder is punishable by
death, and in some cases treason, hi-jacking of an aircraft, aggravated
kidnapping, wrecking a train and terrorist acts can be punishable by
death. In despite these strict guidelines under which Capital Punishment
is practiced, its efficiency and righteousness are consistently in question.
Protestors who are in favor of this practice see it as a necessity in our
society. During the trial of Gregg v. Georgia the Supreme Court stated,
"Certain crimes are themselves so grievous an affront to humanity that the
only adequate response may be the penalty of death.(3)" It is clear our the
majority of U.S. states practice this justice, but protestors view Capital
Punishment as a violation of many Religious beliefs. One argument includes
direct conflicts of one of the Ten Commandments, "Though shall not
kill." Other arguments against the death penalty include the costs, racism
and execution of innocent wrongfully accused victims.
Some advocates suggest the death
penalty is not enough, because while it eliminates the murderers it cannot
bring back the victims. Protestors argue Capital Punishment is nothing but
revenge. This may be a truthful standpoint, but one may ask what punishment
really is. One of the four fundamental objectives to punishment is retribution.
It is clear Capital Punishment serves as retribution to the families of
murdered victims. Killing an evil man and eliminating him from society may not
dramatically cut violent crimes, but it certainly prevents the possibility of
these convicted murderers from killing any more innocent people. It is evident
there are many strong arguments in favor of Capital Punishment, at the same
time protestors are standing strong and continually propose information in
hopes to one day eliminate Capital Punishment from our society.
In the world we live in today, any
issue dealing with the delicacy of life will be heavily debated.
were see ourselves as one nation created equally under God. It is difficult to
incorporate religious arguments due to the simple fact that religious beliefs
have become so broad. Slowly it has become harder for large populations even in
the same societies, to identify with one single belief. Despite this our nation
as a whole is a believer of God. This creates much controversy when our
Government intentionally breaks laws set forth by God. (7)Rabbi Peter J.
Rubinstein who is Senior Rabbi of the Central Synagogue is against Capital
Punishment. Rabbi Rubinstein holds obvious religious views against the death
penalty. One example of an obvious religious viewpoint is the inevitable truth
that we did not create life so we do not have the right to take it away.
"The death penalty costs North Carolina $2.16 million per execution
over the costs of a non-death penalty murder case with a sentence of
imprisonment for life.” In Florida
from 1973 to 1988 an average of 3.2 million dollars was spent per execution.
Across the nation in California
90 million dollars are added to the normal cost of justice per year. Out of
that 90 million, 78 million dollars is lost to the cost of a trial. When a
prosecution seeks Capital Punishment as a sentence the defendant has numerous
opportunities to appeal. Each appeal gives the defendant more time to live, but
more importantly each appeal costs great amounts of money. The money spent on
these Capital Punishment trials may be viewed as wasted money. Many protestors
feel the money spent on the death penalty can more effectively be used to fight
against criminals, possibly educate these mislead people. Another argument is
how the death penalty can also give the wrong message to the public. As a
nation we practice execution of evil criminals. That concept of eliminating
negative aspects of society can be easily misunderstood. Our Government finds it
expectable to eliminate certain people from our society. It raises the bar of violence for people who
follow and live under this Government. What our Government does is eliminates
people who are seen as socially unacceptable and morally unjust. In simpler
words our Government eliminates people they find do not fit into the society
they have created. This gives a controversial message to anyone who has found
themselves in a situation where they find other people to think or act in