The Death Penalty Is Cruel And Unusual Punishment Essay

1213 Words Jul 1st, 2015 5 Pages
This year the state of Nebraska abolished the use of the death penalty as a punishment for murder. The Nebraska legislature voted 30-19 to override the veto of Governor Pete Ricketts according to Berman (2015). A total of 19 states currently do not have the death penalty for reasons ranging from cost, the quality of the defense, and whether or not it is cruel and unusual punishment. The Eighth Amendment of the Constitution prohibits cruel and unusual punishment, punishment to include torture, barbarous punishments, degrading punishments not known to the common law, and punishments so disproportionate to the offense as to shock the general moral sense (U.S. Const. amend. VIII). The ethics of the death penalty have long remained as a source of debate. My hypothesis is that the death penalty does not fall under cruel and unusual punishment and it is constitutional.
In the article The Death Penalty: An Unusual Punishment America is Inflicting Upon Itself; Stephanie Boys state that the death penalty is not cruel but unusual. “It is not only unusual in the effect it has upon the defendant experiencing it, but also upon a number of members in society, including: the family members of the defendant, the jury, the defense attorney, the victim’s family, staff on death row, and the executioner”(Boys, 2011). She describes that the death penalty is unusual for the defendant because while being on death row an inmate can develop extreme social dysfunctions regardless of their level of…

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