Attitudes Towards Capital Punishment Essay

1550 Words 7 Pages
Since its creation capital punishment has been a hot political issue. It has almost single handedly divided the United States on what is best to do with criminals who commit the most heinous crime, murder. For years capital punishment has been associated with injustice in the criminal justice system. With the enormous numbers of black or other minorities being sent not only to prison but, to prison for murder cases, with little numbers of whites being given the death penalty. When it comes to attitudes towards capital punishment in murder cases there are a lot of factors that could be taken into account but, which is the strongest. This study seeks to show that race is. The purpose of my study is to see if race has an effect on attitudes …show more content…
The methods used in study were cross-tabulations with chi squares to determine if race and gender have a significant effect on attitudes towards capital punishment. The findings revealed that there is a significant relationship between race and views towards capital punishment. With white respondents at 72% and 49% being black. “Overall, the findings reveal support for capital punishment, with 73 percent of the sample favoring the use of capital punishment while 27 percent opposing the use of capital punishment. There appears to be a significant relationship between race and views toward capital punishment, with white respondents, 72 percent, more likely to support capital punishment than black respondents, 48.8 percent”.(Dotson and Carter pg. 10) It was also found that men were 78% more likely to support capital punishment than the 69% of women. “Men, 78.1 percent are significantly more likely to support capital punishment than women, 68.9 percent”. (Dotson and Carter pg. 10) This study revealed that race is one of the strongest factors affecting the attitudes towards capital punishment but, it also revealed that gender is also a strong factor. “In examining the general trends, it is consistently shown that although race is the strongest factor affecting attitudes toward capital punishment, gender does have an impact for white respondents. White men maintain the strongest …show more content…
The GSS sampled approximately 1,500 respondents each year from 1972 to 1993. Except for the years 1979, 1981, and 1992. When no surveys were conducted. The intent of the authors was to maximize the number of African American respondents. So they used the sample size from years 1974, 1976, 1977, 1980, 1982, 1984, 1987 to 1991, 1993, 1994, 1996, 1998, 2000, and 2002 and includes 13,823 respondents, of which 1,915 were African American. The dependent variable was the respondent’s attitude toward the death penalty. Respondents were asked whether they favor or oppose the death penalty for persons convicted of murder. The dependent variable response categories included “favor,” “oppose,” and “don’t know.” A value of 1 was assigned to favor, a value 0 was assigned to other. Death Penalty (1 = favor, 0 = other). The authors had many independent variables in their study but, were just going focus on the race variable it this review. Race was their independent variable. African Americans were given the value of 1 and whites were given the value of 0. Respondents who were put in the other category were deleted from the study. One of the findings from the study was that African Americans were less likely to

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