The Arguments Of The Death Penalty By Hugo Bedau

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The death penalty is a controversial subject with plenty of opponents and supporters. The supporters of the death penalty make the argument that there are some criminals that as long as they are alive they’re a danger to everybody else. The opponents of the death penalty say that a judge and a jury shouldn’t be able to decide whether or not a person should live or die. Whether or not the death penalty is a fair and just punishment for criminals has been something that has been disputed ever since the death penalty was created. One of the death penalties supporters is Ernest Van Den Haag. An argument that Haag brings up is targeted towards the people who claim that since inevitably there are some people who will be executed that are innocent. …show more content…
One of these opponents is Hugo Bedau. The first argument that Bedau brings up about the death penalty is that he believes that it is no more a deterrent than life in prison and if somebody is going to kill someone they likely won’t think about whether they get the death penalty or life in prison. For example, he brings up the case of premeditated murders and how the murderer in these cases not only plans the crime but the escape also so if the murderer believes he or she will get away then it won’t matter to them whether the death penalty would be their punishment or not. He brings up that in many different occasions the idea of increasing the number of executions per year has been brought up in court and ruled unconstitutional. One of these occasions being Woodson v. North Carolina, 428 U.S. 280 (Hugo Bedau, The Case Against the Death Penalty, July, 1992). Bedau brings up the financial part of the death penalty vs life imprisonment argument stating that while at first glance it may seem more expensive and time consuming to give someone a life sentence, in the long run inmates given a death sentence appeal their conviction much more often than one receiving life imprisonment thus costing more time and money (Hugo Bedau, The Case Against the Death Penalty, July, 1992). He brings up another situation where the argument of the death penalty deterring people is compromised, this situation involves terrorists. Terrorists most of the time kill in the name of religion and believe that dying serving their religion is the ultimate reward so threatening them with the death penalty would be pointless (Hugo Bedau, The Case Against the Death Penalty, July, 1992). A very important fact is brought up which strengthens Bedaus argument even more. Death penalty states during the 1980’s had an average of 7.5 homicides per 100,000 people as compared to 7.4 for abolition states (Hugo Bedau, The Case Against the

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