• 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. Capital punishment as a deterrent of capital crimes in America

    What was found to be determinant was the jurisdiction in which the crime was committed, the race of the defendant, their financial position, their sex, and the character or characteristics of their victim. Professor David C. Baldus made extensive research in more than 2,000 murders in Georgia.

  2. The death penalty; Can the death penalty be part of a civilized society?

    The justice system must be perfect if it is to do something that is irreversible. Since 1976, each state has several different methods they may choose to execute a prisoner. The five authorized methods of execution are: firing squad (which was last used 1996 in Utah), electrocution, gas chamber (last

  1. Death Penalty Opinion.

    However, this is not to say that the society which inflicts capital punishment commits murder. Murder is an offensive act. Capital punishment, however effective it may be and through whatever ignorance it may be resorted to, is strictly a defensive act.

  2. "Society in 2005 wants to re-introduce the death penalty in prisons

    This pie chart shows the statistics for how many people would agree to bring the death penalty back into the UK. It shows that a larger amount of people within the UK, are 'for' re-introducing the death penalty in the UK.

  1. Our aim of for both questions is to explore the guilty conduct required of ...

    However, the powerful drugs were administered, in my view, grossly negligently, as the doctor failed to read information that he had at his disposal, so this broke the chain of causation.

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

    The most remarkable experience that Moody has observed in his 'patients' was the fact that some saw their dead relatives waiting at he end of the tunnel, which seems to be a good back up to the belief in afterlife.

  1. Capital Punishment Sources Question

    1749 and 1802 only 13 women were executed and these were for harder crimes such as murder and robbery whereas the men were hung for smaller crimes such as pick pocketing. From source B you can also see how female executions became more and more popular from 1749 through to 1802.

  2. How might the death penalty prevent crime?

    The most extensive investigation ever in the USA on deterrence effect of death penalty was published in January 2001, by two professors: H. Dezhbakhsh, P. Rubin and by J. Shepherd. Their research suggests that capital punishment indeed has a strong deterrent effect.

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