The death penalty is inefficient at reducing crime and is immoral
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Pro: Arguing that the death penalty isn't an efficient solution and is immoral
Con: Arguing that the death penalty is an efficient solution and is moral
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Because this is a rather straight forward topic, definitions aren't exactly necessary.
This debate will be discussing the morality and logic of the death penalty in the united states.
“ A Death Penalty Information Center analysis of U.S. murder data from 1987 through 2015 has found no evidence that the death penalty deters murder or protects police. Instead, the evidence shows that murder rates, including murders of police officers, are consistently higher in death-penalty states than in states that have abolished the death penalty”
“Murder rates may be affected by many things, but the death penalty doesn’t appear to be one of them.”
“ While the death penalty, he says, “makes no measurable contribution” to police safety,”
“ Most experts do not believe that the death penalty or the carrying out of executions serve as deterrents to murder, nor do they believe that existing empirical research supports the deterrence theory. In fact, the authors report that 88.2% of respondents do not think that the death penalty deters murder”
“ When police chiefs were asked to rank the factors that, in their judgment, reduce the rate of violent crime, they mentioned curbing drug use and putting more officers on the street, longer sentences and gun control. They ranked the death penalty as the least effective.”
“ It squanders the time and energy of courts, prosecuting attorneys, defense counsel, juries, and courtroom and law enforcement personnel. It unduly burdens the criminal justice system, and it is thus counterproductive as an instrument for society's control of violent crime.”
“ Limited funds that could be used to prevent and solve crime (and provide education and jobs) are spent on capital punishment.”
“Legal costs: Almost all people who face the death penalty cannot afford their own attorney. The state must assign public defenders or court-appointed lawyers to represent them (the accepted practice is to assign two lawyers), and pay for the costs of the prosecution as well.Pre-trial costs: Capital cases are far more complicated than non-capital cases and take longer to go to trial. Experts will probably be needed on forensic evidence, mental health, and the background and life history of the defendant. County taxpayers pick up the costs of added security and longer pre-trial detention.Jury selection: Because of the need to question jurors thoroughly on their views about the death penalty, jury selection in capital cases is much more time consuming and expensive.Trial: Death-penalty trials can last more than four times longer than non-capital trials, requiring juror and attorney compensation, in addition to court personnel and other related costs.
Incarceration: Most death rows involve solitary confinement in a special facility. These require more security and other accommodations as the prisoners are kept for 23 hours a day in their cells.Appeals: To minimize mistakes, every prisoner is entitled to a series of appeals. The costs are borne at taxpayers’ expense. These appeals are essential because some inmates have come within hours of execution before evidence was uncovered proving their innocence”
“ Families of murder victims undergo severe trauma and loss which no one should minimize. However, executions do not help these people heal nor do they end their pain; the extended process prior to executions prolongs the agony of the family. Families of murder victims would benefit far more if the funds now being used for the costly process of executions were diverted to counseling and other assistance.”
“ The 2012 study concluded families in Minnesota were able to move on sooner; because their loved ones’ killers were sentenced to life without parole, rather than the death penalty, they weren’t retraumatized in the multiple appeals that often precede an execution.”
“ The Capital Jury Project interviewed 1,198 jurors from 353 capital trials in 14 states and found that 81% of female jurors and 18% of male jurors regretted their decisions, and 63% of female jurors and 38% of male jurors sought counseling after the trial.”
“ Corrections officers actually carry out the executions, and 31% of them suffer Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). In comparison, 20% of Iraq War veterans suffer PTSD.”
“ August 10, 1982. Virginia. Frank J. Coppola. Electrocution. Although no media representatives witnessed the execution and no details were ever released by the Virginia Department of Corrections, an attorney who was present later stated that it took two 55-second jolts of electricity to kill Coppola. The second jolt produced the odor and sizzling sound of burning flesh, and Coppola’s head and leg caught on fire. Smoke filled the death chamber from floor to ceiling with a smoky haze.”
“ 2. April 22, 1983. Alabama. John Evans. Electrocution. After the first jolt of electricity, sparks and flames erupted from the electrode attached to Evans’s leg. The electrode burst from the strap holding it in place and caught on fire. Smoke and sparks also came out from under the hood in the vicinity of Evans’s left temple. Two physicians entered the chamber and found a heartbeat. The electrode was reattached to his leg, and another jolt of electricity was applied. This resulted in more smoke and burning flesh. Again the doctors found a heartbeat. Ignoring the pleas of Evans’s lawyer, a third jolt of electricity was applied. The execution took 14 minutes and left Evans’s body charred and smoldering.”
“ We conclude that [4.1 %] is a conservative estimate of the proportion of false conviction among death sentences in the United States.”
“Claimed 'cost studies,' often performed by or at the behest of death penalty opponents, are frequently so incomplete as to be false and misleading. For example, they don't take into account the increase in the cost of life without parole cases if there were no death penalty. Criminal defendants who are facing the death penalty — which today must be pleaded by prosecutors up front — often want to make a deal by pleading guilty to first degree murder in exchange for a sentencing recommendation of life without parole. The existence of the death penalty as a possible sentence leads to guilty pleas that save the money spent on trials and limit the opportunity for appeals." (2)
back in July, “six homicides were allegedly committed by five Pennsylvania parolees over two months, including the slayings of two children and a Pittsburgh police officer.”
“Last year, 6,526 people under parole supervision were arrested, or almost 16% of the more than 41,000 total, according to Department of Corrections data.”This included 93 for murder.
As it stands nationwide, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics in May 2018, from 2005 onward an estimated 68% of released prisoners were arrested within 3 years, 79% within 6 years, and 83% within 9 years.
“At the end of the 9-year follow-up period, 79% of prisoners released for a violent offense had been arrested for any type of crime. Prisoners released for a violent offense were more likely to have been arrested for a violent offense.”
“They say it's not a deterrent. Well, you know what, maybe it's not a deterrent but these two [men convicted of killing two police officers in Hattiesburg, MS] will not do any more killing. That's for sure."
“Our research shows that each execution carried out is correlated with about 74 fewer murders the following year.” (5)
“Each execution results, on average, in eighteen fewer murders with a margin of error of plus or minus ten. “(6)
“We find a significant relationship among the execution, removal, and commutation rates and the rate of homicide. Each additional execution decreases homicides by about five, and each additional commutation increases homicides by the same amount, while one additional removal from death row generates one additional homicide.” (7)
“recent investigations, using a variety of samples and statistical methods, consistently demonstrate a strong link between executions and reduced murder rates... In short, capital punishment does, in fact, save lives.”
“Giving up on the death penalty would mean giving up on justice for crime victims and their families. The prisoners currently on California's death row have murdered more than 1,000 people. Of those, 229 were children, 43 were peace officers, and 294 of the victims were sexually assaulted and tortured.”
“Whatever your feelings are toward the death penalty, one thing most people will never know is the pain experienced when a family member, or in my case, family members are brutally tortured and murdered. In 1984, my mother, sister and two nephews were cold-heartedly shot to death by an 18-year-old gang member named Tiqueon Cox...Cox, while on death row, attempted a violent takeover of the Super Max Adjustment Center at San Quentin with a goal to kill as many guards as possible.”
I do hope that, upon review, judges have determined negation is common sense and moral obligation.
"The death penalty is the ultimate, irreversible denial of human rights."