However, statistics have shown that the death penalty is applied racially and discriminatorily. Three out of five murder cases in which the victim was white and the defendant was black resulted in the defendant receiving a death penalty. Professor Katherine Beckett of the University of Washington reechoed this fact by stating that, jurors in Washington “were four and a half times more likely to impose a sentence of death when the defendant was black than they were in cases involving similarly situated white defendants.” So where is the justice that advocates of the death penalty are imploring? Moreover, the rich are more likely to escape a death penalty than the poor. The DPIC has reported that most defendants in capital cases cannot afford an attorney. Thus, if equal justice for all is anything to go by, then justice should be equally distributed regardless of race and economic
There is also a large disparity between races when it comes to sentencing convicts to Death Row. Looking just at the federal death penalty data released by the Department of Justice between 1995 and 2000, 682 defendants were charged with death-eligible crimes. Out of those 682 defendants, the defendant was black 48% of the cases, Hispanic in 29% of the cases, and white in only 20% of the cases (Coker, 2003).
The death penalty is very discriminatory when it comes to racial issues. "The death penalty is fraught with abuses and the potential for abuse" (Moral Arguments 1). Capital punishment is
The Death Penalty and Race To look closely at many of the mechanisms in American society is to observe the contradiction between constitutional equality and equality in practice. Several of these contradictions exist in the realm of racial equality. For example, Black s often get dealt an unfair hand in the criminal justice system. In The Real War on Crime, Steven Donziger explains,
The study conducted by MSU examined jury selection as well as the decisions made by said juries. “The MSU study of capital charging and sentencing found that those who kill whites are more likely to get the death penalty than those who kill blacks. The MSU study found that a defendant is 2.6 times more likely to get the death penalty if the victim is white.” (ACLU). Following the study, North Carolina passed a law entitled the “Racial Justice Act”. This piece of legislature made it possible for inmates to appeal their sentences due to supposed racial profiling. Since the passing of the law last year, there have been 4 successful appeals. The law doesn’t guarantee that the whole sentence will be reversed; however, it puts in place a system that allows for flaws in the length/severity of the sentence to be readdressed. The passing of the law as well as the MSU study prove that although there are more minorities being charged for crimes, the charges are of ill-willed intentions.
According to the National Registry of Exonerations (1),(2), from the year 2016 alone shows a record number of 166 exonerations, which almost one-third are wrongful homicide convictions.
224 The death penalty is a corrupt form of legal justice. For example, “…Defendants in about one-third of the Texas cases were represented at trial by an attorney who had been or later was suspended or otherwise sanctioned…”(Leibman). This use of fraudulent attorneys in a case can lead to enough inaccuracies in the evidence to wrongfully execute a person. This action is against the constitutional right given to us of equal justice for all. In addition, “…One of you two is gonna hang for this. Since you're the nigger, you're elected…”(Texas Police Officer). A Texas police officer said this to 2 men, one black and one white that were connected to the murder of a 17-year-old girl. Race plays a big part in the sentence of guilty or innocent. However, supporters of the death penalty claim “…that it enforces the laws by issuing strict punishment to the offenders…”(President George Bush). The death
The case of Troy Davis and Lawrence Brewer have brought up many discussions and controversies regarding racial discrimination (Tyner and Colucci, 1083). Troy Davis was an African-American executed on September 21, 2011 after the murder of a white off-duty police officer, Mark MacPhail (Tyner and Colucci, 1083). However, Davis always
Just recently on the news, a man is charged with murder and faces the death penalty if convicted. An officer shoot an unarmed black man in the back eight times again race is a fact for the killing. But, will race play a part in the sentencing, if found
A Georgia study found that killers of whites are 4.3 times more likely to receive a death sentence than killers of blacks. More than 75 percent of those on federal death row are non-white. Of the 156 federal death penalty prosecutions approved by the Attorney General since 1988, 74 percent of the defendants were non-white (governmentguide.com) . This shows that there is something definitely wrong with the judicial system. If this isn?t enough to convince you that the death penalty is wrong. Then people may need to look at other reasons.
The article that I read about the racial bias of the death penalty in the U.S. by David Love explained how southern states are responsible for the vast majority of African American executions in the United States. Love explicitly stated that “the application of the U.S. death penalty is unfair, arbitrary, and racially biased.” Most disturbingly, the article explained that whether or not a capital punishment defendant receives the death penalty does not depend on the facts of the case but more so on the race of the defendant and the race of the victim. Moreover, even the county in which the case was prosecuted can play a role in capital punishment sentencing.
The ethnicity of a defendant in a capital case should not play a role whatsoever in their sentencing. However, it plays a significant and crucial role in deciding who receives capital punishment. According to the American Civil Liberties Union, minorities account for a disproportionate “43% of total executions since 1976 and 55% of those are currently awaiting execution.” An interesting piece of information that I found from the article was that only 12 people have been executed where the defendant was white and the murder victim was black which is disconcerting when compared to the 178 black defendants who have been executed for the murders of white victims. The racial disparities in these statistics are alarming and troublesome.
Capital Punishment Murder, a common occurrence in American society, is thought of as a horrible, reprehensible atrocity. Why then, is it thought of differently when the state government arranges and executes a human being, the very definition of premeditated murder? Capital punishment has been reviewed and studied for many years,
Being sent to Death Row is the highest prosecution a criminal could be sentenced to and the process when determining of someone deserves a death sentence is a very bias decision. Since 1977 when capital punishment was restored there has been about 20,600 homicides and only about .7 death sentences for every 100 homicides has been given in the Cook county. The decision to impose a death sentence is not only based on the crime done but also the race of the victim. Attorneys at a state level has a less formal guide when giving death sentences. It is commonly seen how race plays a major role in the justice system. As apart of attorney protocol of determining if the death sentence is given it is seen black males will be given a higher sentence versus a white male even if the crimes where similar. In this article “Disparities on Death Row” published in Grumman points out the unjustness in the justice system. Through ethos, pathos, and logos Cornelia Grumman effectively persuades her audience to spread the issues of capital punishment assignment.
Death penalty is just a capital punishment that punishes the worst crimes and if social or racial matters are to be affected by it, then death penalty should not be at fault, but the way the system works as a whole. Senator Russ Feingold states that “We simply cannot say we live in a country that offers equal justice to all Americans when racial disparities plague the system by which our society imposes the ultimate punishment.” He puts the system at fault, criticizing it on the fact that if such a system imposes capital punishment that is plagued by racial disparities, it’s not even worth living here anymore. Furthermore, in an article written by Xiaohua Zhu, he tells us that “While it may seem regrettable to execute a handful of felons who may truly want to reform, it would be worse to abolish the death penalty without paying adequate attention to the useful purposes it serves.”. If we were to disband death penalty because of a faulty system, we are forgetting to look at the larger purpose it provides us with. In addition, he states “ the right way to avoid such an error is not to abolish the death penalty, but to improve the legal system and the administration of justice, so the death sentence is given strictly in accordance with