Do you believe in the death penalty?
- Susan SLv 71 decade agoFavorite Answer
I do not support it because it is not an effective way of preventing or reducing crime and because of the risk of executing innocent people. I think your answer deserves more than quick slogans. Here are answers to questions often asked about the system, with sources listed below.
What about the risk of executing innocent people?
124 people on death rows have been released with evidence of their innocence.
Doesn't DNA keep new cases like these from happening?
DNA is available in less than 10% of all homicides. It is not a guarantee against the execution of innocent people.
Doesn't the death penalty prevent others from committing murder?
No reputable study shows the death penalty to be a deterrent. To be a deterrent a punishment must be sure and swift. The death penalty is neither. Homicide rates are higher in states that have it than in states that do not.
So, what are the alternatives?
Life without parole is now on the books in 48 states. It means what it says. It is sure and swift and rarely appealed. Life without parole is less expensive than the death penalty.
But isn't the death penalty cheaper than keeping criminals in prison?
The death penalty costs much more than life in prison, largely because of the legal process. Extra costs include those due to the complicated nature of both the pre trial investigation and of the trials (involving 2 separate stages, mandated by the Supreme Court) in death penalty cases and subsequent appeals. There are more cost effective ways to prevent and control crime.
What about the very worst crimes?
The death penalty isn’t reserved for the “worst of the worst,” but rather for defendants with the worst lawyers. When is the last time a wealthy person was sentenced to death, let alone executed??
Doesn't the death penalty help families of murder victims?
Not necessarily. Murder victim family members across the country argue that the drawn-out death penalty process is painful for them and that life without parole is an appropriate alternative.
So, why don't we speed up the process?
Over 50 of the innocent people released from death row had already served over a decade. If the process is speeded up we are sure to execute an innocent person.
But don’t Americans prefer the death penalty as the most serious punishment?
Not any more. People are rethinking their views, given the facts and the records on innocent people sentenced to death. According to a Gallup Poll, in 2006, 47% of all Americans prefer capital punishment while 48% prefer life without parole. Americans are learning about the system and we are making up our minds based on facts, not eye for an eye sound bites.Source(s): Death Penalty Information Center, www.deathpenaltyinfo.org, for stats on executions and states where they occurred, poll results, reports on costs, and links to testimony (at state legislatures) of victims' family members. http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/05cius/offenses/standard_li... the FBI Uniform Crime Report for 2005. (As of now, only preliminary stats are available for 2006) Stats found here can be compared to stats on the number of executions in different states. The Innocence Project, www.innocenceproject.org Death Penalty Focus, www.deathpenaltyfocus.org, for information on why the death penalty costs so much
- El GuapoLv 71 decade ago
I used to be pro-death penalty, but I have changed my stance, for several reasons:
1. By far the biggest reason is this: Sometimes our legal system gets it wrong. Look at all the criminals who are being released after years of imprisonment because they were exonerated by DNA evidence. No matter how rare it is, our government should not risk executing one single innocent person.
Really, that should be reason enough for most reasonable people. If you need more, read on:
2. Because of the extra expense of prosecuting a DP case and the appeals process (which is necessary - see reason #1), it costs taxpayers MUCH more to execute prisoners than to imprison them for life.
3. The deterrent effect is questionable at best. Violent crime rates are actually higher in death penalty states. This may seem counterintuitive, but think about the mixed message it sends: we’re trying to take a stand against murder…by killing people. The government becomes the bad parent who says, ‘do as I say, not as I do.’
4. There’s also an argument to be made that death is too good for the worst of our criminals. Let them wake up and go to bed every day of their lives in a prison cell, and think about the freedom they DON’T have, until they rot of old age.
5. The U.S. government is supposed to be secular, but for those who invoke Christian law in this debate, you can find arguments both for AND against the death penalty in the Bible. For example, Matthew 5:38-39 insists that violence shall not beget violence. 1 Peter 3:9 argues AGAINST “eye for an eye”-type justice. Leviticus 19:18 warns against vengeance (which, really, is what the death penalty amounts to). In John 8:7, Jesus himself says, "let he who is without sin cast the first stone."
- mickkoozLv 41 decade ago
No. No one has the right to take a life, be it the murderer or the warden. Then there is the possibility of executing the wrong person. And that has been proven to happen. Further, if one were to spend the rest of ones life in prison and not allowed but a few privileges. Life would get to be real bad and I'm sure one would like to end it rather than living with the knowledge that one will never see the outside of the prison walls ever again. This would be punishing this individual daily and if he or she was executed that would end the punishment and suffering for the crime that was committed. The so called cost? Our so called civilized countries spend billions of dollars in unnecessary military war machines and all this could be used towards educating and eradicating poverty and as a result we would see the world of crime diminish quite considerably.Source(s): Common Christian sense
- caligrlLv 51 decade ago
I do believe in it, due to some of the crimes that are committed against people in such a sick inhumane way... I get so angry that I wish death to that person.
I would not like to witness an execution, I guess I just want it done but not be a part of it, and for that I feel like a hypocrite.
(sorry if any misspelling spell check isn't working properly)
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- 1 decade ago
No. It is applied disproportionately against the poor, or the people who can't afford the high-priced lawyers. And even it was applied equally, we as humans do not have the right to take the lives of others, even if that person has taken the life of someone else. Also, there is always the possibility of human error when it comes to jurors, and if the life of even one innocent person is taken, it is just not worth it. I can't even imagine being an innocent person about to be KILLED for something I didn't do. God forbid it ever happens to any one of us. Further, the same desired outcome can be accomplished with life sentences without parole.
- 1 decade ago
In theory? Yes. I believe if you intentionally, maliciously, and without provocation take the life of another, then your own is forfeit.
However, I have serious reservations about the current justice system. The justice system should be about finding out the truth of the matter, not manipulating the technicalities of the system to get a bad conviction (or worse - a bad acquittal).
Building on Sassy's note about making them suffer - there is a difference between "justice" and "revenge".
- Anonymous1 decade ago
I believe in the death penalty in principle, however I don't trust the government (any government) to apply it fairly and responsibly.
- Satan's Own™Lv 51 decade ago
Not only do I believe in the death penalty, I think the manner of death should depend upon the level and style of violence of the crime committed. (Ex. Someone who stabbed someone to death should be stabbed....and then fried in the electric chair.)
- 1 decade ago
NO I don't.If I believe in death penalty I would be the same criminal as the person who deserve to die.Source(s): no
- babsa_90Lv 41 decade ago
I think they should be done what htey have done to their victim. So i dont beleive int he death penalty, i think that it is an easy way out. If a guy savagely cuts a woman to peices, the same should be done to him. Yea, so were not a barbaric society, QQ?