Death Penalty Deterrence

Good Essays
In the “The death penalty 2015 year-end report” (p.14) the current President of the United States stated, “I have not traditionally been opposed to the death penalty in theory, but in practice it’s deeply troubling” —President Barack Obama. The death penalty is capital punishment and is a legal penalty in the United States. On June 29, 1972, the Supreme Court effectively suspended the death penalty because existing statutes were no longer valid. It was once again permitted under the Gregg v. Georgia decision in 1976 but established limitations on capital punishment. Today, 38 states and the federal government have capital punishment as a possible punishment according to the DPIC. (Dunham, 2015, p.2) There were 49 new death sentences in America …show more content…
People who advocate for capital punishment support deterrence, retribution, and incapacitation. The belief that society can stop crime by making punishment more severe than the benefits gained from criminal acts is the ideology of deterrence. (Sunstein& Vermeule, 2005, p.5) There are two types of deterrence. Specific deterrence aimed at deterring individual offenders from re-offending and general deterrence aimed at making “an example” of an offender to deter future offenders. Retribution is another ideology of pro-death penalty advocates, which refers to punishment for offenders that is equal to the crime committed. Incarcerating an offender to minimize their ability to re-offend is known as incapacitation ideology. Anti-death penalty opponents have several arguments against the death penalty. The argument includes that it does not deter crime, it poses a risk of executing the innocent, it is cruel and uncivilized, and is a double standard for offenders and the government. For those who oppose capital punishment the ideology of rehabilitation by reconditioning the offender as a productive member of society is the goal. I believe the best punishment for an offender who breaks the law is incarceration moreover and for murderers is life without the possibility of …show more content…
I believe the death penalty is wrong in itself and is an oxymoron. The use of the death penalty as punishment for killing another person is a contradiction. I do not agree with death penalty advocates who believe the death penalty deters crime. When a crime is committed I believe most offenders have certainly thought about the ramifications of their actions. Thus the most severe capital punishment has not in many cases deterred crimes from taking place. Lambert, Clarke, & Lambert, (2004) suggests “When other offenses are at issue, additional moral questions of commensurability and aggregation arise”. Retribution I believe is not always a proportionate punishment to the crime committed. The death penalty is not only used as punishment for murder but other crimes as well so as to the punishment doesn’t always fit the

Related Documents

  • Decent Essays

    Nathanson who is an abolitionist is going to answer negatively to this whereas Haag response who is retentionists will answer positively. Nathanson believes the death penalty is immoral, he talks about two versions of what he calls equality, as a retributivist, where the punishment must fit the crime committed. The two versions are strict Lex talionis “eye for an eye” or that the punishment must bring about the same harm to the wrongdoer as it did to the victim. Nathanson argues that there are problems with Lex talionis, it suggests punishments that are morally unacceptable. Nathanson believes that punishment does not need to be hundred percent the same, it just needs to inflict the same amount of suffering.…

    • 1083 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Death Penalty Debate

    • 1043 Words
    • 5 Pages

    I believe it is a great advantage because it can lower a great amount of people attempting murder. It intimidates future criminals from making crimes as well as performs revenge to the criminal and that shouldn 't be seen in a wrong way. There are many arguments against the death penalty, but they are usually not valid when looked deeply into the topic. It is important that all states come to an agreement and use death penalty rather than some states being legal and some not. The death penalty is useful in sentencing criminals that have committed some of the worst crimes known to society.…

    • 1043 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    He stands firm on his first argument, saying that the death penalty is not only the best but the only deterrent to crime. Ernest says the objection of life imprisonment is a light slap on the wrist and is not geared enough. Imprisonment only gives murderers more time to plot and scheme it does not change other criminal minds about making the same mistake. Some opponents of Haag stand argue that people have a right to life and morally we should not use capital punishment. An objection that Haag uses is that the right to life is forfeited if the crime that is broken is severe enough.…

    • 1380 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    It is that last group of people that I am most concerned about at the moment. Killing, as a general rule, is immoral. Is it possible to be a virtuous person and still play a direct role in bringing about the death of another person? This is a tricky question, I admit. I honestly do not full heartedly support the death penalty, but I think there are rare cases in which it would be just and in the best interest of the safety of the general public.…

    • 1641 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Against Death Penalty

    • 1736 Words
    • 7 Pages

    Should the death penalty be abolished? The answer is a resonating, no. I say this because even though the death penalty in my mind is against what I believe about not killing humans, we have human killing other humans. So with that there must be a punishment that can help deter the murderers of this world not to kill. That is exactly what the death penalty does it helps deter someone from killing another person by threatening their own life by capital punishment.…

    • 1736 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    In a Kantian world with moral laws, capital punishment does not seem to be a theoretical solution for punishing murders. But when someone does commit murder those individuals render their rights, and henceforth would acknowledge their action with consequences, such as capital punishment. Jeffrey H. Reiman presents various argument against the use of capital punishment with no adequate evidence of effectiveness. Capital punishment is a reasonable method to punish offenders for crimes committed, and is used for extremes heinous acts; it is also used under great scrutiny. Instead, Jeffrey H. Reimn conveys the notion of any violation of moral duties should be dealt with that same manner to the offender.…

    • 1490 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Some people say that crime keeps going up. Others say that it is going down as time goes on. Either way, some people feel that capital punishment is a deterrent of crime. Others feel that the death penalty is inhumane and a cruel and unusual punishment that will never be appropriate, no matter what the crime was. People who are pro-capital punishment theorize that a person is less likely to commit a crime because they do not want to die at the hands of the government.…

    • 733 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    (1350)Against the Death Penalty: An Analysis of Reiman’s “Moderate” Retribution Theory This argument against the death penalty will examine the “moderate retribution theory of Jeffrey Reiman. In this theory, the premise of retribution for murder defines the validation of the death penalty, yet not in the abuse of justice found in the American criminal justice system. Reiman believes that the death penalty should be abolished because criminals are not always cognitively aware of the crimes that they commit, which demands the rehabilitation of the individual. Reiman argues against the death penalty because it offers an extreme form of punishment for crimes that are rarely “conscious” in the mind of the criminal. This moderate form of retribution…

    • 1458 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    I feel this way because there are crimes in this would that if anybody thought of doing that being sentenced to death should cross there mind. The utilitarian theory is a perfect example of how I feel capital punishment should be looked at. I feel this way, because of the reasons behind the theory. Since it is forward-looking and hopes to deter further criminals from committing the same act it shows that the main focus is not the killing itself, but the future criminals who might commit the same act. Anyone can give their own opinion on which theory is morally right, but when it comes down to which theory is best for society utilitarian theory is by far the best.…

    • 817 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Those in favor of execution as a punishment for criminals see the death penalty as a deterrent. They believe it is the ultimate punishment, or that it will help to deter future crime. They believe that no criminal should be let off “easy”. They should not receive a…

    • 1220 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays

Related Topics