Essay Example on The death penalty is a punishment of thousands of years of history









The death penalty is a punishment of thousands of years of history At present there are still many countries and regions that use the death penalty as the capital punishment but there are also many countries and regions have abolished the death penalty The argument of whether to abolish the death penalty has also appeared for a long time This article will discuss why we should not abolish the death penalty from the perspectives of humanism miscarriage discrimination and deterrence When it comes to capital punishment people are always talking about whether they are humanized It seems a very cruel matter to bring death to someone even on the basis of legal process Of course this argument can always be the reason for those abolitionists The main point of these abolitionists is that death penalty violates human dignity because it deprives people of their right to life In their view the death penalty reflects the most basic animal instincts of mankind an eye for an eye life for a life Grant 2004 

From the beginning of the Renaissance after the Enlightenment especially in the Western world humanism was distributed at an astonishing speed Today humanism has become the core idea of most western countries It is not surprising that these abolitionists use humanism as one of their arguments However this reason really makes sense When it comes to humanitarianism they stand in the criminal s perspective regardless of the victim Criminals will never think of human dignity when they murder Also the death penalty will never be the reflection of humanity s basest animal instincts Actually this is just on the opposite side of humanity s basest animal instincts human is a kind of creature that can take responsibility but animals can t Haag 1985 Animals kill for surviving but the death penalty is set for those criminals to pay for what they have done stop the criminal continue to commit more severe crimes and bring deterrence to the society Abolitionists also take discrimination and miscarriage as arguments It seems that black or poor defendants were likely to be executed than equally guilty others Haag 1985 

According to the statistics black people make up 34 3 percent of defendants executed in the past but black people only make up 15 percent of the population in U S Death penalty information center 2017 It is an indisputable fact that discrimination does exist while carrying out the death penalty However just like an old saying the gun does not kill people do Media common people and even judges may have discrimination on a specific group In modern democratic countries the law doesn t have any discrimination against someone but people do Also we can never ignore the high crime rate of black people which also lead to the statistics above All in all discrimination can never be one of the arguments it doesn t make sense The miscarriage of death sentence is also one of the main problems and can also be the reason for those abolitionists However as long as it is a law there will definitely be the problem of miscarriage Abolishing the death penalty because of miscarriage is just like giving up surgery because surgeons misses may cause the death of patients which is absurd and doesn t make sense at all Also according to the statistics Since 1973 more than 155 people have been released from death row with evidence of their innocence From 1973 1999 there was an average of 3 exonerations per year

From 2000 2011 there was an average of 5 exonerations per year Death penalty information center 2017 All in all miscarriage will never be one of the reasons to abolish the death penalty too About the deterrence function of the death penalty there was an old data indicates that from 1933 to 1965 an additional execution per year may have resulted on average in seven or eight fewer murders Ehrlich 1975 It cannot fully prove that carrying out death penalty still has deterrence nowadays but in my opinion carrying out death penalty does not have much deterrence on crime legalizing death penalty does In many states of US there is the death penalty in the state law but no executions were in fact carried out for many years Wilson 1985 According to the statistics the number of execution in 1998 was 295 but in 2017 it has decreased to 39 Death penalty information center 2017 There are two main reasons resulted in this kind of situation Firstly we are becoming more and more careful and rational while carrying out death penalty nowadays Secondly there was the fewer criminal who committed severe crimes that can be given death sentence according to the law Even this kind of phenomenon also has something to do with the society it can still surely prove that death penalty still has deterrence However what deters more is the existence of the law of death penalty rather than the execution Once death penalty exists in the law and there is the inevitability that the death penalty may be carried out it deters The original purpose of the law is not to punish anyone but to maintain the stability of society

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