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

Death penalty.

Extracts from this document...


Death penalty June 22, 2000, a day when technology such as computers, digital cameras, worldwide contact, mobile phones, and space shuttles, rapid fast internet, is a part of daily life. Still, this is a day to grieve. This is the day that the 36-year-old American, Gary L. Graham was executed. According to Amnesty International, who thoroughly researches the death penalty because they oppose it, Gary Graham was exposed to several types of violence in his youth. Growing up with a mentally ill mother and an alcoholic father drug and alcohol abuse were a part of his life. Under the influence of both and in order to survive, Graham started to steal food, money, anything. Although his life is what America could grieve, because nobody needs to grow up like this; America should grieve for his death. When he was 17 years old Gary had apparently fired the fatal shot that killed Bobby Lambert. Although real evidence was never found, Gary was found guilty. In his trial, his lawyers were either too busy, not interested, inexperienced, or convinced that he was guilty, because they failed to interview those who could have plead him innocent, because they did not identify him as the murderer. Because of inadequate legal representation, on June 22 two years ago, Gary Graham was executed in Texas. "One of his lawyers has admitted:" I have serious questions whether we presented a fair trial and adequate defence. History The first juvenile execution in the United States of America was in 1642, when the states, or colonies, were not even united. In the Plymouth colony of Massachusetts, Thomas Graunger was executed. Since then at least 361 people have been executed in the United States of America for a crime that they committed when they were under the age of 18. People refer to the time between 1973 and now as the "last era". ...read more.


But this is also not always accurate. Sometimes somebody who has met the victim just before he or she was murdered could have left a trace such as a lost hair. To replace the death penalty some cases end up in lifetime imprisonment, or other punishments in which the victim has either a chance to prove its innocence or learn from what he/she has done. Critics like Victor R. Streibe, who is an opponent of the death penalty, would argue that the death penalty for juveniles does not act as a deterrent to them, and should be abolished. He stated: "Harsh punishments for violent crimes are only temporary band-aid solutions, with the only long-term solutions coming from cleaning up the neighbourhood, schools, and societal structures that continue to generate such violent teenagers." Instead of investing more money in the actual execution, maybe it's time to invest money in the neighbourhoods where it is necessary, according to Streibe. There are world wide and national organizations such as Amnesty International and ACLU who promote the awareness of the effects of the death penalty. They are against the death penalty and try to convince others to become so as well. Their organizations grow every day because of this awareness and people who support their ideas. To make people recognize what is really going on in the world they try educate as much as possible. Amnesty International, for example, is a part of the society lessons taught in Europe. In those lessons they learn how to be a part of society, and how they and others react to certain events. Teaching children is a very important since they are the future leaders. Other things such organizations do are protest, provide information on events and collect signatures. "The execution of a juvenile offender is contrary to fundamental principles of American justice which punishes according to the degree of culpability and reserves the death penalty for the worst of the worst offenders. ...read more.


In the upper schools, information about the death penalty with causes and effects, such as the Amnesty International program in Europe, would be a good start. Their subject would be to discuss the issues caused by the death penalty and without it, because they will be the future voters, they are the one who can make a change in this system. When Bush became governor in Texas, "he never used his power to grant a 30- day vote reprieve even not in cases which concerned a possible innocence". Now Bush became president, think of what would happen to the USA. Keep in mind those numbers from Texas; what if you are suddenly accused of a murder? Bush isn't going to save you. The government is supposed to set the right example for society. And by killing its children, it's saying that it is ok to take revenge. The government should set the right example by not killing, because that is what executing is. Everybody deserves a second chance in life. The benefit of the government not doing so is that it shows the people of the United States of America they have a system of justice in which they can believe. According to Amnesty International Death penalty violates human rights. It violates our right of equality, our right to life, our right of protection against cruel punishments and it violates our right that gives us equal protection from the law. First of all, Amnesty International says that all the human beings on this planet are equal. But when a judge or a member of the jury decides whether or not somebody deserves death penalty, he or she has at that time, the power to decide about somebody else's life. When you have that power, the power to decide whether or not a person is going to die, you put yourself on a higher position than that person. But the UDHR says in its first article that all human beings are equal, the same. If we are equal, how can we decide about such radical changes in somebody's life at the same time? ...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. The Impact of the Black Death on the Christian Faith

    Even with their basic rights taken away from them, the Jews maintained their trade as moneylenders within society. The Christians believed that the Jews reenacted the crucifixion by performing the ritual murder of Christians. This further alienated the position of the Jews in medieval Europe, causing serious discrimination against them.

  2. Death Penalty Opinion.

    Capital punishment does not only lower the murder rate, but its value as retribution alone is a good reason for handing out death sentences. The death penalty deters murder by literally putting the fear of death into 'would be' killers.

  1. The death penalty

    then obviously this is a violation of human rights and are not being treated equally before the law. Some states in USA even execute criminals who were children at the time of their offence, or who have a low IQ, or who are mentally ill.

  2. Vampires in Myth & History

    The strigoi mort are the reanimated bodies which return to suck the blood of family, livestock, and neighbours. A person born with a caul, tail, born out of wedlock, or one who died an unnatural death, or died before baptism, was doomed to become a vampire.

  1. Black Death, epidemic of plague which ravaged Europe in the mid-14th century.

    As the movement attracted many recruits and operated outside the established Church, it was eventually outlawed by the papacy. An opposite response of some contemporaries, in the face of a disease which was unpredictable and undiscriminating, so that the virtuous in society were no more immune from sudden death than

  2. Critically evaluate arguments for and against the death penalty.

    of being charged and sentenced to the death penalty was influenced by the race of the victim. It was found that "those who murdered whites were more likely to be sentenced to death than those who murdered black victims"15. These statistics show that there seems to be quite severe discrimination

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

    Others would argue that it serves as closure and fair punishment to those who think they can get away with a crime with a prison sentence. Why does the USA continue to employ the death penalty when fifty other developed democracies have abolished it?

  2. Justice demands the death penalty for serious crimes. Discuss

    Therefore it is not a cruel or inhuman punishment. Afterall, how can the victim?s family be consoled when they know that the criminal who has murdered their beloved one(s) is living in an air-conditioned, cable-equipped prison where he/ she gets free meals, personal recreation time, and regular visits with friends and family?

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