Death Penalty

By: Eric Carnivele

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Capitol Punishment

Capital punishment or the death penalty is a legal process where a person is put to death by the state as a punishment for a crime. The judicial decree that someone be punished in this manner is a death sentence, while the actual process of killing the person is an execution.


History of the Death Penalty

The first established death penalty laws date as far back as the Eighteenth Century B.C. in the Code of King Hammurabi of Babylon, which codified the death penalty for 25 different crimes. The death penalty was also part of the Seventh Century B.C.'s Draconian Code of Athens, which made death the only punishment for all crimes; and in the Fifth Century B.C.'s Roman Law of the Twelve Tablets.


In America, the death penalty has been around since our beginning. The death penalty was the only way of convicting a criminal and was used for all types of crime up until 1794, which is when the first prison was built. Over time, there has been many people trying to abolish the Death Penalty. During the 1950's through the 1970's support for the death penalty was at an all time low. In fact, in 1967 the death penalty was suspended in all states by the Supreme Court, it wasn't until 1976 that the death penalty was renewed. As time goes on, more and more states are abolishing the death penalty and declaring it unconstitutional.

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Different Forms of the Death Penalty

Political Views on Capitol Punishment

Republicans tend to favor the Death Penalty. Essentially, they favor capital punishment because they believe that it will reduce the risk of future deaths by taking the person who committed the crimes out from society, as well as creating a deterrent effect for would-be murderers. They also hold to the position that without the threat of an ‘eye for an eye’, the fabric of society itself will fall apart. While there is an element of risk of punishing an innocent, the benefits outweigh the very rare incidents of wrong prosecution.


Democrats tend to oppose the Death Penalty. They believe this because they think that there is no substantial data supporting the argument that capital punishment reduces or prevents future deaths. In addition, they argue that rehabilitation is a more humane method of punishment, a reflection on the governments higher sense of morals.

Personal Impact

I chose to research about Capitol Punishment and the Death Penalty because of the magnitude of the subject. The Death Penalty is literally a matter of life and death, this gives me a sense that this topic is extremely important to our U.S. government and humanity in general.


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Prediction

I believe that eventually the death penalty will be completely abolished in America. I believe this because there are too many people in this nation who believe that capitol punishment is inhumane. However, this will continue to be an ongoing issue for citizens and politicians in the future.


Citations

"History of the Death Penalty." Anti-Death Penalty. Anti-Death Penalty, n.d.
Web. 23 Nov. 2013. <http://www.antideathpenalty.org/history.html>.



Reggio, Michael H. "History of the Death Penalty." PBS. PBS, n.d. Web. 23 Nov.
2013. <http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/execution/readings/
history.html>.


White, Deborah. "Pros & Cons of the Death Penalty." About: US Liberal Policies.
About.com, n.d. Web. 24 Nov. 2013. <http://usliberals.about.com/od/
deathpenalty/i/DeathPenalty.htm>.


Sheiber, Vicki. Victims of Wrongful Executions. New York: Middlehouse, 1997.
Print.


Sinclair, Billy Wayne, and Jodie Sinclair. Crime. Courage. Redemption. Atlanta:
Arcade, 1987. Print.