Real DP Esaay - Charlotte Ball Political Science Professor...

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Charlotte Ball Political Science Professor Lester “An Eye for an Eye Makes the World Blind” - Ghandi One of the most emotional and controversial topics in American politics is the death penalty which is defined as the killing of a person by judicial process as punishment .. In America today the death penalty is the harshest penalty imposed in the 36 of the 50 States in America typically for the crime of murder (see appendix showing Capital Punishment Since 1976 by jurisdiction). The argument against capital punishment in this debate is whether it is morally right to end someone’s life and if it abides by the Constitution. On one side capital punishment is looked at as murder and a violation of life rights, on the other, the view is that it is a balanced form of justice and retribution for heinous crimes. However the death penalty enforces an irreversible fate for those who fall victims to this sort of extreme punishment that is commonly used throughout America. How certain is the case against the defendant? Is the defendant legally sane? What were the real circumstances of the crime scene? These are all questions that are thrown around in the courtroom for days, months and even years- all determining the fate of an American citizen’s life. To conservatives, the death penalty seems a reasonable and valid punishment for those who commit atrocious and immoral crimes against other American citizens. They support the decision made in the 1976 court case, which declared the death penalty as constitutional (Death Penalty Quotes), and therefore believe it is humane and civilized to execute someone found guilty in their courts in the ways approved by the state court e.g.
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lethal injection, electrocution, gas chambers, hanging and firing squad. The argument that the punishment must fit the crime gives relief and liberation to the victim’s families, knowing that they found justice in the crime committed. As well as punishment, capital punishment acts as a deterrent to potential criminals and prevents similar crimes from reoccurring. The criminals who are sentenced to the death penalty and are actually executed obviously have no parole to look forward to, whilst those sentenced to life have a chance of parole. In practice, being sentenced to life often does not mean life in prison. Life sentences often have a tariff (a limit of on the number of years a convicted felon can spend behind bars) and are then convicted felons are eligible for parole after a minimum period set by the judge at the trial. Once parole is
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This note was uploaded on 10/18/2010 for the course POLSCI 102 taught by Professor Baker during the Spring '10 term at William & Mary.

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Real DP Esaay - Charlotte Ball Political Science Professor...

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