Death Penalty

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Death Penalty: Yes or No?
Amanda Nichole Hester
ENG 2001
Instructor Gary Henry
September 28, 2013

The debate over the death penalty has been looming over the United States of America for numerous years. The death penalty/ sentence has been around since 5th century B.C. The practice of sentencing someone to death dates back to when the colonists settled in the New World. The controversy that the death penalty has caused in the United States is startling within itself. The death penalty is in place for punishment among hard criminals and at one time was considered to be cruel and unusual punishment brought down by the Supreme Court in 1972. That is not the case in today’s society because in 1976 the
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Beyond a reasonable doubt should be in effect, but if individuals are being exonerated, then how did they get convicted in the first place? Associated costs and wrongful convictions go hand in hand with the death penalty debate. Think of it this way. If we take all the funding associated with the death penalty cases and put it into the public safety departments for more offices and proper training, wrongful conviction numbers would decline because of better training and more personnel.
Does the Death Penalty Still Serve as a Deterrent? At one time the majority of the people and lawmakers of the United States believed that having the death penalty in place served as a deterrent for criminals. We are humans and we all have choices. Criminals do not necessarily think about the death penalty while committing a capital crime, which is punishable by death. There is no factual data that proves that the death penalty serves as a deterrent for other criminals. Hence, “states without the death penalty have lower murder rates that have it, a gap that has consistently grown since the 1990s” (Carter, 2012). Evidently it does not matter if you have the death penalty in effect or not, but it appears to be better if you do not have the death penalty in place. Furthermore, in the aspects of deterrence, some believe that the death penalty still serves that deterrent purpose. Again, there is no factual evidence for their beliefs but certain individuals
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