The Death Penalty Is A Much Talked About Subject

2062 Words Mar 30th, 2015 9 Pages
Capital Punishment The death penalty is a much talked about subject. While some have strong reasons to be in support of it, others have strong reasons to be against it. The reading by Nathanson, the news article I have selected, and the movie Last Dance either implicitly or explicitly gives reasons to be against the death penalty. Berns presents an argument in support of the death penalty. I will begin by analyzing Berns’ argument. He starts by describing examples of crimes that people have a right to be justifiably angry about, such as someone being murdered (Berns 312). He uses an example of a mob of people wanting justice and argues that the law should provide such justice. However, just because a crowd of people feel a certain way about a certain topic does not mean that they are correct in the way that they feel. It is much easier for a person to stand with a crowd than stand alone with a different position. This refers to the idea of the bandwagon effect where individuals will take a certain viewpoint because they feel that others are taking a certain position. This does not mean that a position is correct, only that it is popular. The example Berns’ gives provides a weak explanation for the demand of a group of people providing enough reason for punishment being carried out. Berns continues his argument by describing how punishment makes a criminal unhappy while making the law-abiding citizens happy (Berns 312). However, this thinking is too absolute. To simply…

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