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

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Arseny Knaifel 12JAS English Essay The death penalty; Can the death penalty be part of a civilized society? A comment on the death penalty on the example of the USA. The USA has a complex set of capital offenses, especially remarkable murder with aggravating circumstances. Those set of laws claim that murder is wrong, so in turn, we, the people of the government, murder you. These circumstances change from state to state, usually first-degree murder with conditions. Some states like North Carolina or Missouri list general first-degree murder as a capital offense with any aggravating circumstances. However, the death penalty is not a sign for a civilized society, and the following aspects should demonstrate why I think that way. The plain thought of imagining every execution that takes place can be satisfying if you are a victim party. Or it could make you feel disgusted if you are a liberal. The witnesses to the execution are usually members of the press and members of the family of the victim. They see everything. They see 20.000 volts of electricity being shot through a person's body, they see a man bound to a chair in the gas chamber when the deadly gas is coming out from under his chair and goes into his lungs, and they sometimes see a man being shot to death by a firing squad. ...read more.


When a political leader takes his side on the death penalty, it is one of the main aspects that person is looked upon by the voter. This is a major concern if you are a gubernatorial candidate, especially in one of the Southern states. The fundamental reason that capital punishment should be abolished is the fact that we have put innocent people to death. Capital punishment is our greatest punishment, it is irrevocable and if we as society consider it necessary, it must be perfect. Unfortunately for J. Tafero, it is not. Tafero was executed in 1990 for the murder of two police officers on a Florida highway rest stop. S. Jacobs was also sentenced to death with Tafero on the same charge based on a statement of a third co-defendant. In 1992, the Jacobs's conviction was inverted on a federal order of "habeas corpus" in 1992. Following the discovery that the chief prosecution witness (the third co-defendant) had given clashing statements, the prosecutor accepted a plea in which Jacobs did not admit guilt, and she was immediately released. Unfortunately for Tafero, he was executed before this evidence was heard. Also, there is the point of racism in death penalty judgments. A proved statistic says that, for a crime, it is five times more likely to execute a black person rather than a white. As seen in the film "40 days in May", E. ...read more.


D. Harding was executed by lethal gas in 1992 for the shooting deaths of two businessmen in a hotel room after torturing them. His execution went according to plan, until Harding refused to breathe deeply as is required for the gas to penetrate the blood vessels in the brain. His body resisted and he screamed for over six minutes. Death was not pronounced until ten minutes after the gas was released. Usually it takes a matter of minutes for a patient to give way to asphyxiation (lack of blood supply to the brain). A television news reporter that witnessed the execution claimed that, "We put animals to death more humanely than this." Other people who witnessed the execution were "walking vegetables" during the following days while another journalist suffered from insomnia. This might be savage justice, but not true justice. The death penalty is a practice that must be eliminated from today's society. With the many advances that society has made, executing people for crimes the person may have or may not have committed is still practiced. This is one of those issues in which our society should move forward from inhuman punishment and treatment. Not only is there a risk of executing the wrong person, but the way in which people are executed isn't humane. In order for society to be allowed to kill criminals, everything involved must be accurate and effective. The capital punishment system is not effective, and not completely justified. No proper civilized society can establish death penalty as it's a sign of inhumanity and disrespect to the planet earth. ...read more.

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