Capital Punishment Of The United States Essay

1239 Words Apr 23rd, 2015 5 Pages
Capital punishment in the United States of America is a constant source of debate. Attempts to abolish the death penalty have been made numerous times throughout our country’s history, dating back hundreds of years(citation) and still continue to this day, the debates show no sign of stopping. While capital punishment is currently legal in thirty-two states, their imposition varies widely. Along with the varying imposition, a large majority of the executions are carried out by a few select states. Texas alone accounts for over thirty-seven precent of the executions that have been carried about since 1976, while there are several states who have yet to execute a single prisoner since 1976, such as New Hampshire and Kansas.(citation) 1976 is a year of importance concerning capital punishment because it marks the year that the Supreme Court re-confirmed capital punishment as constitutional. In the case of Gregg v. Georgia, the Supreme Court held that capital punishment did not violate the eighth amendment of cruel and unusual punishment. However, many Americans continue to claim that the death penalty falls under the definition of a cruel and unusual punishment. The founding fathers purposely used vague language when writing the constitution, which leaves the definition of a cruel and unusual punishment up to the Judaical branch. The Supreme Court’s interpretation of the eighth amendment leaves us the question of “what defines a ‘cruel and unusual punishment’?”. The phrase…

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