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Unformatted text preview: Capital Punishment 27/09/2007 09:30:00 Final Exam Wed Dec 12 11:30-2:30 Capital Punishment (Van Den Haag) In favor of Capital Punishment Often defended on basis of o 1. Justice/retribution o 2. Social Utility/Deterrence His responses to - common arguments for getting rid of the death penalty (I & II): I. Distribution- CP is unevenly distributed (races) o Response: the morality of capital punishment and the morality of how it is distributed are two completely different issues: admits it. II. Miscarriages of Justice Stat: American Civil Liberties Union in the past 30 yrs 124 people on death row have had there sentences reversed based on DNA evidence There are cases of innocent people getting the death penalty o Response: Many human activities involve the death of innocent people. But we continue with them as long as the advantages out weigh the disadvantages Ex. Construction III. Deterrence Admits there is no statistical evidence that would prove that capital punishment deters murder (cant measure success of deterrence) o Response: but there is also no statistical evidence that would prove that capital punishment does not deter murder: no stats either way Just because a state has the death penalty and has a higher murder rate that does not mean that the two number correlate Thought Experiment o The finality of death is a deterrent Weekdays: death penalty Weekend: Life in prison More people would murder on the weekends IV. 3 More Arguments For Abolition 1. $ o it too expensive to keep them alive False due to the incredibly long chain of appeals that the suspect can make therefore it is far more expensive to have a death penalty case o Response: this is not telling unless we accept/assume that very few people who are on death row are actually following the appeals that they have access to o This is not where the actual decision of CP will take place 2. CP Endorses Unlawful killing o if our state kills that tells us its okay to kill o Response: death by a lawful reason, where as murder is not okay. Killing for justice o Capital punishment doesnt even endorse unlawful killing Ex. Imprisonment endorses unlawful kidnapping: ridiculous Ex. Being fined for some crime endorses robbing people: ridiculous 3. CP Violates Human Rights o goes against human dignity to kill someone even if they have killed someone else; people still have the right to life even if you kill someone, even if you deserve o Response: someone who is in prison for life does not have autonomy...
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- Fall '08