capital punishment - Dr. Harrison Honors Seminar Pretish...

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Dr. Harrison Honors Seminar Pretish Borde Capital Punishment: Compliant With Human Rights Principles? Capital punishment has been a controversial topic in a number of societies all over the world. Some people are pro-death penalty, while others are against the idea of it completely. Back and forth arguments regarding this topic occur every day in schools, churches, court rooms, and even in homes between family members. The subject matter is certainly contested over; however, the issue has not been put on hold. Judicial officials have not decided to temporarily withhold capital punishment as a sentence until a consensus has been reached. Instead, new inmates are introduced to death row every day, and thus people who are against the idea become increasingly frustrated with the United States’ justice system and its discernible flaws. The process and implementation itself of capital punishment in the US defies a number of principles outlined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights proposed by the United Nations. After all, an eye for an eye isn’t fair - or is it? The countries of the world that implement capital punishment as a penalty for a serious criminal offense to this day total to fifty-eight different nations. Ninety-five countries that have abolished the death penalty, nine use it only during special situations, and thirty-five permit its use but haven’t used it for a criminal’s sentence in the last ten years. The United States is one of the countries for which the death penalty still exists and is utilized. (The Death Penalty) I’m strongly opposed to one idea in particular that proponents of capital punishment frequently adhere to – the argument that a victim’s family is given closure by having the perpetrator executed. Revenge is not the answer. Murder is murder, regardless of how you spin it; whether it’s a street criminal or the United States Supreme Court itself that is choosing to take life is irrelevant. As stated in Article 3 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 1
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Dr. Harrison Honors Seminar Pretish Borde “Everyone has the right to…security of person” (The Universal Declaration of Human Rights). This guarantees every human protection from sources of harassment, such as a victim’s family’s thirst for retribution. Albeit the offence(s) committed by convicted person, a death row inmate is still human and thus has certain inalienable rights. Objectively, if the financial aspect is taken into consideration, American taxpayers save a lot of money by keeping inmates in jail for life rather than having them put on death row. The appeals process for prisoners who face capital punishment is long and tedious; many end up dying of natural causes in jail far before the appeals are completed. Each death sentence is tied to a mandatory review by the state supreme court, with costs starting at $70,000. Should a case move beyond state review, costs can end up at $275,000 per additional appeal. (Capital Punishment)
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This note was uploaded on 09/29/2010 for the course HNRS 2116 taught by Professor Yu,p during the Fall '08 term at East Carolina University .

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capital punishment - Dr. Harrison Honors Seminar Pretish...

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