Life or Death

Should The Death Penalty Be Allowed?

Should The Death Penalty Be Allowed?

Most death penalty cases involve the execution of murderers although capital punishment can also be applied for treason, espionage, and other crimes.Proponents of the death penalty say it is an important tool for preserving law and order, deters crime, and costs less than life imprisonment. They argue that retribution or "an eye for an eye" honors the victim, helps console grieving families, and ensures that the perpetrators of heinous crimes never have an opportunity to cause future tragedy.Opponents of capital punishment say it has no deterrent effect on crime, wrongly gives governments the power to take human life, and perpetuates social injustices by disproportionately targeting people of color (racist) and people who cannot afford good attorneys (classist). They say lifetime jail sentences are a more severe and less expensive punishment than death.

Top 3 Pros

Pro number 1:

PRO: "Accepting capital punishment in principle means accepting it in practice, whether by the hand of a physician or anyone else... If one finds the practice too brutal, one must either reject it in principle or seek to mitigate its brutality. If one chooses the latter option, then the participation of physicians seems more humane than delegating the deed to prison wardens, for by condoning the participation of untrained people who could inflict needless suffering that we physicians might have prevented, we are just as responsible as if we had inflicted the suffering ourselves. The AMA [American Medical Association] position should be changed either to permit physician participation or to advocate the abolition of capital punishment. The hypocritical attitude of 'My hands are clean — let the spectacle proceed' only leads to needless human suffering."                                                                                        Bruce E. Ellerin, MD, JD Doctor of Oncology Radiation at Sierra Providence Health NetworkResponse letter to the New England Journal of Medicine regarding an article titled "When Law and Ethics Collide — Why Physicians Participate in Executions," by Atul Gawande, MDJuly 6, 2006Bruce E. Ellerin, MD, JD Doctor of Oncology Radiation at Sierra Providence Health NetworkResponse letter to the New England Journal of Medicine regarding an article titled "When Law and Ethics Collide — Why Physicians Participate in Executions," by Atul Gawande, MDJuly 6, 2006

Pro Number 2:

PRO: "Many opponents present, as fact, that the cost of the death penalty is so expensive (at least $2 million per case?), that we must choose life without parole ('LWOP') at a cost of $1 million for 50 years. Predictably, these pronouncements may be entirely false. JFA [Justice for All] estimates that LWOP cases will cost $1.2 million-$3.6 million more than equivalent death penalty cases. There is no question that the up front costs of the death penalty are significantly higher than for equivalent LWOP cases. There also appears to be no question that, over time, equivalent LWOP cases are much more expensive... than death penalty cases. Opponents ludicrously claim that the death penalty costs, over time, 3-10 times more than LWOP."                                                                             Dudley Sharp Director of Death Penalty Resources at Justice for All"Death Penalty and Sentencing Information," Justice for All websiteOct. 1, 1997 Dudley Sharp Director of Death Penalty Resources at Justice for All"Death Penalty and Sentencing Information," Justice for All websiteOct. 1, 1997

Pro Number 3 :

PRO: "The crimes of rape, torture, treason, kidnapping, murder, larceny, and perjury pivot on a moral code that escapes apodictic [indisputably true] proof by expert testimony or otherwise. But communities would plunge into anarchy if they could not act on moral assumptions less certain than that the sun will rise in the east and set in the west. Abolitionists may contend that the death penalty is inherently immoral because governments should never take human life, no matter what the provocation. But that is an article of faith, not of fact. The death penalty honors human dignity by treating the defendant as a free moral actor able to control his own destiny for good or for ill; it does not treat him as an animal with no moral sense."                                                                                Bruce Fein, JD Constitutional Lawyer and General Counsel to the Center for Law and Accountability"Individual Rights and Responsibility - The Death Penalty, But Sparingly," www.aba.orgJune 17, 2008Bruce Fein, JD Constitutional Lawyer and General Counsel to the Center for Law and Accountability"Individual Rights and Responsibility - The Death Penalty, But Sparingly," www.aba.orgJune 17, 2008

Top 3 Cons:

Con Number 1:

CON: "Ultimately, the moral question surrounding capital punishment in America has less to do with whether those convicted of violent crime deserve to die than with whether state and federal governments deserve to kill those whom it has imprisoned. The legacy of racial apartheid, racial bias, and ethnic discrimination is unavoidably evident in the administration of capital punishment in America. Death sentences are imposed in a criminal justice system that treats you better if you are rich and guilty than if you are poor and innocent. This is an immoral condition that makes rejecting the death penalty on moral grounds not only defensible but necessary for those who refuse to accept unequal or unjust administration of punishment                                                                   Bryan Stevenson, JD Professor of Law at New York University School of Law"Close to Death: Reflections on Race and Capital Punishment in America," from Debating the Death Penalty: Should America Have Capital Punishment? The Experts on Both Sides Make Their Best Case2004Bryan Stevenson, JD Professor of Law at New York University School of Law"Close to Death: Reflections on Race and Capital Punishment in America," from Debating the Death Penalty: Should America Have Capital Punishment? The Experts on Both Sides Make Their Best Case2004

Con Number 2:

CON: "In the course of my work, I believe I have reviewed every state and federal study of the costs of the death penalty in the past 25 years. One element is common to all of these studies: They all concluded that the cost of the death penalty amounts to a net expense to the state and the taxpayers. Or to put it differently,the death penalty is clearly more expensive than a system handling similar cases with a lesser punishment. [It] combines the costliest parts of both punishments: lengthy and complicated death penalty trials, followed by incarceration for life... Everything that is needed for an ordinary trial is needed for a death penalty case, only more so:• More pre-trial time...• More experts...• Twice as many attorneys...• Two trials instead of one will be conducted: one for guilt and one for punishment.• And then will come a series of appeals during which the inmates are held in the high security of death row."                                                                 Richard C. Dieter, MS, JD Executive Director of the Death Penalty Information CenterTestimony to the Judiciary Committee of the Colorado State House of Representatives regarding "House Bill 1094 - Costs of the Death Penalty and Related Issues"Feb. 7, 2007Richard C. Dieter, MS, JD Executive Director of the Death Penalty Information CenterTestimony to the Judiciary Committee of the Colorado State House of Representatives regarding "House Bill 1094 - Costs of the Death Penalty and Related Issues"Feb. 7, 2007

Con Number 3:

CON: "The American Medical Association's policy is clear and unambiguous... requiring physicians to participate in executions violates their oath to protect lives and erodes public confidence in the medical profession. A physician is a member of a profession dedicated to preserving life... The use of a physician's clinical skill and judgment for purposes other than promoting an individual's health and welfare undermines a basic ethical foundation of medicine — first, do no harm. The guidelines in the AMA Code of Medical Ethics address physician participation in executions involving lethal injection. The ethical opinion explicitly prohibits selecting injection sites for executions by lethal injection, starting intravenous lines, prescribing, administering, or supervising the use of lethal drugs, monitoring vital signs, on site or remotely, and declaring death."                                                                                     American Medical Association (AMA) "AMA: Physician Participation in Lethal Injection Violates Medical Ethics," press release from the AMA website July 17, 2006American Medical Association (AMA) "AMA: Physician Participation in Lethal Injection Violates Medical Ethics," press release from the AMA website July 17, 2006

Summary

I think they should have the Death Penalty because murders should get what they deserve . I think that they should pay the ultimate consequences. Without this they would not have learned their leasons. I hope they do not take this away . It helps society by canceling the bad people and killers in this world.