Death Penalty: Morally Wrong? Appropriate Punishment? Essay

936 Words 4 Pages
Shelby Dinkel
Wagoner
English IV
28 November 2012
Death Penalty: Morally Wrong? Appropriate Punishment? Since 1976 when the death penalty was reinstated by the United States Supreme Court there has been approximately 1,317 convicted criminals executed. Out of those executed, 12 were female. These executions have been held in 34 different states with Texas being the highest at 37 percent. The majority of the time lethal injection and the electric chair were used. However, gas chambers, hanging, and a firing squad have also been utilized (“Stewart”). Since the reestablishment of the death penalty in the United States, if it is considered cruel and unusual punishment or if it is an effective and moral way of punishing criminals has been
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These people also believe that the evil done by criminals should not be returned with state-sanctioned evil (“Mott”).
Another issue brought up by death penalty critics is a jury and judge can never be 100 percent positive that the trial was accurate. The sentence of putting a convicted criminal to death could actually be killing an innocent person. Over 100 innocent people who have been acquitted from death row are an example of why they believe this penalty should be abolished in the United States (“Update: Death Penalty”). One of the reasons that these people will favor a life sentence over death penalty is that if a convicted criminal’s sentence is reversed and they are found to be innocent, they can attempt to attain a normal life (“Update: Death Penalty”). Supporters of this type of punishment say that capital punishment is a completely moral way to handle dangerous criminals. These people argue that when a person chooses to take the life of a human being they forfeit their right to live. Popular opinion throughout the nation supports the death penalty which overturns the belief that the practice is an undemocratic act (“Update: Death Penalty”). A Gallup poll in 2009 showed that 65 percent of the American public was in favor of the death penalty while 31 percent were against it. However, the votes were split when people were asked if they would choose death penalty or life imprisonment for an offender (“Death

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