Capital Punishment Is The Penalty Of Death Penalty Essay

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Capital punishment is the penalty of death for crimes such as murder, treason, espionage, and, with certain cases, rape and has been around since the colonies. The Death Penalty Information Center says, “The first recorded execution in the new colonies was that of Captain George Kendall in the Jamestown colony of Virginia in 1608” (“Introduction to Death Penalty”). It also says that in the late 1700s, the United States had an abolitionism movement that created a reduction on capital punishment cases in the early 1800s. This movement caused Michigan to be the first state to abolish the death penalty in 1846; however, it was still legal to use the death penalty in Michigan if the crime was treason. In the 1930s, capital punishment came back in full force and created an average of one hundred and sixty-seven executions per year. This outrageous use of the death penalty lead to the first suspension of the death penalty in June 1972, but that did not last long. In 1976, the Supreme Court ruled that if a state followed guideline that made the death penalty constitutional, than they could reinstate capital punishment, which over half of the United States did and still use today (“Introduction to Death Penalty”). While there are arguments that suggest capital punishment should be legal, the United States should ban capital punishment because it is cheaper to house criminals in prison for life, it has racial discrimination, and it violates the eighth amendment.
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