The Death Penalty Should Be Abolished

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The death penalty has been around for thousands of years, from the codification of twenty-five laws by King Hammurabi of Babylon to today with many of our political nominees for president in support of continued use of the death penalty. Those in favor of the death penalty cite deterrence and punishment as their main reasons. However, in reality the death penalty is a drain on state and local finances, there is no evidence that is serves as a deterrent to crime, and has been shown to put the lives of innocent people in jeopardy. The death should be abolished, it has caused loss of finances, loss of life, and has un-proportionately affected the poor and the impoverished people of the United States.

Today 101 countries, nearly two-thirds of countries around the world, have abolished the death penalty. The United States is not one of those countries. In 2015 the United States executed 28 people. Since the death penalty was reauthorized in 1976, more than 1,362 people have been executed. It is worth noting however that public opinion of the death penalty has waned to 60 percent, an all-time low since 1972. Still the United States, a leader in democracy and human rights, is one of only 22 countries that still carries out executions.

The American justice system, like all systems of justice around the world, is not perfect. Conviction and application of the death penalty in the United States does not guarantee guilt. In the United States of America guilty people are sometimes
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