• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Capital Punishment: The Effects of the Death Penalty

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Capital Punishment: The Effects of the Death Penalty The effects of the death penalty can be divided into three main groups: public safety, deterrence, and retribution. The death penalty is the judicially ordered execution of a prisoner as a punishment for a serious crime, most often first-degree murder. Prisoners who have been sentenced to death are usually kept separate from other prisoners pending their execution. However, isolation and eventually, the death of a convicted inmate, play an important role on public safety, deterrence, and retribution in the future. The principle of deterrence is based on the idea that the threat of punishment must be harsh enough to counter the benefits or pleasures that the criminal would receive from the illegal act. In addition, the punishment must be administered swiftly so that potential criminals will see a clear cause-and-effect relationship between the two. The most convincing argument for the deterrent effect of the death penalty comes from the commonsense belief that people fear death more than life in prison. "Once in prison, virtually all convicted murderers seek to avoid execution by appealing to reduce their sentence to 'life in prison' (Bender)." ...read more.

Middle

"Crime indicates a diseased mind in the same manner that sickness and pain do a diseased body," the Iowa Supreme Court's chief justice said. "And as in the one case we provide hospitals for the treatment of severe and contagious diseases, so in the other, prisons and asylums should be provided for similar reasons." There is something in human nature that requires a life for a life. Two years after the state abolished the death penalty, a convict was lynched in Janesville, Wisconsin. A newspaper reporter from Chicago took the incident as proof of the same natural principle "that this cannot be looked upon as the feeding of revenge, but the voice of nature within us (Banner)." Capital punishment has a retributive basis as long as capital crime was seen to be chosen freely. For certain people that are genetically or environmentally predisposed to commit crimes, the death penalty cannot be seen as a just punishment. Convicted felons may throw out a death sentence based on illness or psychotic behaviors that the criminal cannot control, yet this claim can only be accounted for with intense psychological reviews or having prior doctor's diagnosis on said mental illness. ...read more.

Conclusion

Or we should not have trucking or aircrafts or elevators because we are going to have accidents. There are going to be some mistakes committed. The question is, on balance, which way do we better promote the general welfare of public safety? R.L. Calder believes that "nothing is more remarkable in the evolution of a community than the growing regard for human life. A community is held to be civilized, or not, in exact proportion to the safety of the common citizen. When the life of an individual is unjustly taken by another individual, the horror of the community for such an act cannot be adequately and proportionally manifested except as the community surmounts sentiment and exacts the life of the killer in payment - after a trial, where all possible human excuses and palliations have been alleged, tested, and found insufficient (Calder)." For people who truly value public safety, there is no substitute. Capital punishment not only forever bars the murderer from killing again, it also prevents parole boards and criminal rights activists from giving the criminal the chance to kill again. Anna Zenner English 101 Professor Monticelli 11 November 2004 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Capital Punishment section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Capital Punishment essays

  1. Death Penalty Opinion.

    Robert Matthews a journalist once wrote, "Some people argue that the absence of Capital punishment in England is the mark of a civilized society." I believe we are rapidly becoming uncivilized. Some of the things that happen on our streets and in people's homes certainly do not constitute civilized behavior.

  2. Is the death penalty the best protection from a murderer? Is justice for the ...

    In other cases, DNA testing has also exonerated death row inmates. DNA testing was just invented in the early 1990s, due to advancements in science. If this testing had not been discovered until ten years later, many of these inmates would have been executed.

  1. Capital punishment is the infliction of death by an authorized public authority as punishment ...

    This limited the death sentence to five categories of murder and was generally seen as a fiasco. These were : Murder committed in the course or furtherance of theft. Murder by shooting or explosion Murder whilst resisting arrest or during an escape.

  2. Capital Punishment

    That is why humans need to play accurate foresights especially when making decisions about something so serious such as capital punishment and whether a person deserves to be punished by the death penalty. A second difficulty is found in measuring pleasure.

  1. Compare and contrast the themes of death in Everyman and Morality Play

    although not showing him rejecting God does reveal that Everyman is unaware of Gods presence which further reveals how the play tries to make to audience aware of God so they become religious.

  2. Examine at least 2 reasons for believing in life after death

    Descartes and Plato were substance dualists , who believed that there are two types of substance: one material and one spiritual. Descartes argued that the mind and body are intimately related, (this theory also became known as "Cartesianism"). He argued that the mind wasn't physical, and is distinct form the

  1. Capital Punishment, is it an effective or ineffective deterrent?

    ago Marc Ancel stated '...in general the modern tendency is more and more to drop the mandatory character of the death penalty. It is provided as the ultimate punishment but replaceable by another penalty'30. There are very strong arguments against the abolition of capital punishment.

  2. Capital Punishment Amendment Act 1868

    Viewing such behaviour through the class barrier may dilute and wrongly reflect its true meaning. Two main criticisms of public executions arose in the lead up to its removal in 1868. The first was rooted in the crowd, its reaction to both the offender and the solemnity of the event.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work