Capital Punishment, Should It Or Should It Not Be Used In Today's Criminal Judging System

1734 words - 7 pages

While Capital Punishment has been one of the most feared things of our time, it is still being questioned if it is unconstitutional. The Death Penalty is being enforced in more than 100 countries in the world and are usually in used in politically-related cases. Although it has been the case in many countries throughout the world it has been said that the Death Penalty is 'cruel and unusual punishment' which is a direct violation to the Bill of Rights. Capital Punishment is a certain copy of the earliest days of slavery, when you had no rights or any different opinion, and like then, executions have no place in our civilized society. The Death Penalty, throughout it's years of existence, has ...view middle of the document...

In 1944 Gunnar Myrdal reported in his book American Dilemma that 'the South makes the widest application of the Death Penalty, and Negro criminals come in for much more than their share of the executions' Between the years of 1930 and 1940 the African Americans only made up about 12 percent of the United States' population, but between those times they also made up about 51 percent of the people that were executed. Juries are more likely to impose the death penalty on blacks than on whites accused of the same offense (Administra- tion Office of the Courts). Of the 145 cases studied by the Administration Office of the Courts it was shown that whites would have received the death penalty at a higher rate since they met the criteria for capital punishment more often. Yet, the case studies revealed that this was not the situation. Is the value of a white life worth more than a person of color?When Capital Punishment is put into a case and the person has been killed there is no way to get back from that if they are later found to have been innocent. If a person is sentenced to life without parole and is later found to be innocent, that person can still be released, but if the person was put to death there is no way of giving life back to someone who's been executed. For example, a man about 5 years ago was set free after he was in jail for 12 years and after he was 72 hours from being executed. In his case, the prosecutors used perjured testimony and suppressed evidence which imprisoned him. The witness that set him free was a sixteen year old who while imprisoned for a separate murder conviction, confessed to killing the officer whom Randall Adams was in jail for killing ('The Case'1). For us to kill those people who have acted outside the boundaries of acceptable human behavior puts us in the same position as they are in-we become killers. It is also a view that people must take because the people on death row did not get there on their own, their families and communities share the responsibility of making those people who consider committing the brutal acts they committed, so why should they be the individuals to take the punishment ('Talking'2). Executions give society the unmistakable message that human life no longer deserves respect, they are also irrevocable and can be inflicted upon the innocent. Why did the U.S. Supreme Court change their minds about the Death Penalty?In 1972, the Supreme Court declared that under then existing laws 'the imposition and carrying out of the death penalty...constitutes cruel and unusual punishment in violation of the eighth and Fourteenth Amendments' This was found to be 'constitutionally unacceptable' But then in 1976, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the death penalty is not unconstitutional. 'The court ruled that these new statutes contained 'objective standards to guide, regularize, and make rationally reviewable the process for imposing the sentence of death'Although some of the law imposing the...

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