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Death Penalty: an Exaggerated Punishment

In: Social Issues

Submitted By kontohb
Words 1507
Pages 7
Daniel Kontoh-Boateng
Dr. Susannah Chewning
ENG 101-301
13 December 2013

The Death Penalty: An Exaggerated Punishment
Furman v. Jackson, a case ruled in the State of Georgia in 1972 really aroused concerns regarding the death penalty. Technically, William Henry Furman was found guilty of murder which was supposed to attract a death sentence. However, his death sentence was said to be “arbitrarily and capriciously “applied and therefore regarded a contradiction to the eighth amendment that prohibits excessive bails and fines as well as cruel and unusual punishment. In effect, this argument hindered the death penalty law of forty states and the federal death penalty decrees and altered the sentences of 629 inmates who were on death row during that period (“The Death Penalty in America”). Now, if the death sentence of 629 inmates were commuted at the time, it means that there could have been an alternative form of punishment applied in place of the death penalty. Therefore this gives rise to questions, is the death penalty really necessary? Is the life of the murderer any less valuable than that of the victim? Over the years, the view that the death penalty is a deterrent to serious crime has been immensely debated, in this paper the debate against death penalty as a good deterrent to serious crime will be continued.
Democracy is a prime feature of the system of governance in the United States and as part of democracy the freedoms and rights of the people are held in high esteem. With the imposition of the death penalty, the intention of the Constitution of the United States to preserve the liberty and freedom as inspired by the declaration of independence (“Liberty, Opportunity, and Security for All”) has been jeopardized by rather limiting the freedoms of people by act of fear and emotional distress. Michael Radelet, a sociologist, witnesses the ordeals of…...

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