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The Death Penalty This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   An article ran in the January issue of The 21st Century supporting the death penalty. I feel that it is important to print an article in opposition to capital punishment.

The death penalty has always been one of the most hotly debated issues in the United States. As our country grows older and wiser, however, evidence clearly points to the fact that the death penalty is not a good solution.

There is no question that killing another person is the most heinous crime that one can commit. I am not sure why, but it seems that our government is being hypocritical when it states that capital punishment is allowable because, after all, the criminal did murder an innocent victim, and therefore should be killed. This is known as the "eye-for-an-eye, and tooth-for-a- tooth theory." Of course, if we used this system all the time, there would be no need for laws. If someone hits me, I would hit him/her back. How simple, we can all be primitive again.

A second argument that some people use to support capital punishment is that the fear of being given the death penalty is going to stop criminals from murdering. How many criminals would murder in the first place, even in a state where there is no capital punishment, if they thought there was a chance of getting caught? Most murderers feel that they have a fool-proof plan to get away with murder. Unfortunately, most are right.

In response, I believe that the Bill of Rights, specifically the Eighth Amendment, prohibits cruel and unusual punishment. If there is any punishment much crueler than death, please let me know.

In addition, it is time to face the fact that our judicial system is prejudiced. For instance; in southern states, 8 percent of the black criminals who murder get the death penalty. Only 1 percent of white murderers get capital punishment. Also, murderers are seven times more likely to get the death penalty for murdering a white person as they are if they murdered a black person. This strikes me as blatant prejudice.

Finally and most importantly, no one, including a judge, is perfect. What happens if a person is given capital punishment and evidence turns up later which reveals that this person is innocent? If the "criminal" was put in jail, at least partial reparations could be made later. Obviously, if a person is given the death penalty, there is no turning back.

Indeed, it is not fair that murderers are often given parole after only a few years in jail. That is the reason that I would suggest those convicted of murder should be jailed for life with no option for parole. No matter how good the murderer is in jail, he/she should not be given parole. There are plenty of bridges and roads that need to be repaired. Let the convicted murderer work for the public good for the rest of his life. True, this will never make up totally for the misery of the victim's loved ones. But at this point in time, it seems better than the alternative.n


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.




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Shay<3 said...
today at 1:28 pm
Truly, I think is fair to an extent. Yes they did take someones life, and they ruined that family's life. So think about whether or not the incident was accidental or intentional. More or less it is wrong to murder someone but right to deal with the problem. I almost think there is no solution. As tragic as it is in both cases. But either or no one will always be right, nor win..
 
s.mitchells said...
Mar. 29 at 3:44 pm
I think the death penalty should not be done as well. According to many researchers, doing the death penalty money and resources than simply having inmates imprisoned for life. There has also been debate on whether lethal injection is actually painless. Some prisoners were found to have not enough anesthetic to actually kep them unconscious. These inmates would have been extremly likely to have been fully conscience of the next two shots and would have felt excruciating pain similar to being boi... (more »)
 
The_NarratorThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Feb. 13 at 11:48 am
The death penalty is, in all honesty, a great idea. Unfortunately, mass incarceration is a very big issue, considering that our taxes are paid to house, feed, and entertain over 2.5 million criminals. Think about it: if the death penalty didn't exist, think how many would be in jail now. While it is true that killing a murderer is not the most moral option out there, it's the best choice that we have given our current economic state. Call me a fascist, but looking at the numbers - not the people... (more »)
 
eric rules said...
Feb. 6, 2014 at 8:26 pm
If yu wana know whats worse then the death penalty is...torture. you could forse someone to eat his/hers fingers off they would live thus not bieng death. or feed there fingers to starving wolves. there are alot of toture methods...and the victim would still live.
 
BohemianRhapsody96 said...
Feb. 4, 2014 at 5:11 pm
I am a firm believer in Hammurabi's Code, the source of the "eye for an eye" mantra. As much as I would like to see rapists get raped and robbers get robbed, I know that cannot happen. However, I can see murderers get murdered. I support the death penalty. Oh, and the author challenges us to think of a penalty more cruel than death. How about good old-fashioned medieval torture? You know, being torn apart limb from limb, having eyes gouged out... you know.
 
Random Bored Person replied...
Nov. 16, 2014 at 6:10 pm
If an murederer gets murdered then it shows that YOU ARE NO BETTER THAN THE MURDERER.............
 
IMSteelThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Nov. 8, 2013 at 2:15 pm
Humans do not have the right to kill anyone, no matter what they have done. "Let the man here who has commited no sin cast the first stone."  But as for, "eye for eye and tooth for tooth," that is fair, and just.  But no human is righteous enough to dole out that kind of punishment.
 
bmanzano8 said...
Oct. 23, 2013 at 9:55 pm
Kimber, studies have shown that more taxpayer money gets spent with death penalty trials than if they are sentenced to life in prison. The government goes through a lot of money to make sure that they do not mess up and accidentally kill someone who is innocent. They are required to have two trials instead of one and along with all the fees for the trial they also have to pay for the judges, district attorney, etc. Also since 1970, over 140 people have been declared innocent after having been pu... (more »)
 
jewelia said...
Sept. 25, 2013 at 7:16 am
This is an amazing article. I disprove of the death penalty, but for different reasons, though. I NEVER think the death penalty is fair. I don't think it's enough. I think death is too quick, too easy, especially if it's painless or near-painless (which it is in too many cases). I think that the criminals should be made to suffer in prison, the longer the better, and then die off as they will.
 
dez_dez replied...
Oct. 1, 2013 at 3:22 pm
i truley agree with ur opinion :)
 
The_NarratorThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Feb. 13 at 11:53 am
Author, THIS is what you're looking for. You know, crueler than death? I disagree with you, @jewelia. We don't know what lethal injections are like, though. The best that scientists can come up with is that it feels like your lungs are being squeezed before you can't move at all. You're practically witnessing your own death. As far as the fact that they deserve a cruel, painful death - that's entirely immoral and unjust. It's death that we're talking about. You know, the forced end of your life?... (more »)
 
TheSkyOwesMeRainThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Sept. 3, 2013 at 8:34 pm
What a great essay! And I totally agree with you, capital punishment should not be allowed; we should not allow ourselves to become murderers as well!
 
The_NarratorThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Feb. 13 at 11:57 am
@TheSkyOwesMeRain, I disagree with your statement, and there is no offense in my opinion to be made. I apologize if I come off as that way. Murdering is not the same as killing. Murdering is (a) premeditated, (b) unjust, and (c) what some would call cruel and irrational. Meanwhile, killing as a means of the death penalty is not the same as murder. Killing, although premeditated, is just (in the eyes of that law). As far as being moral, I think killing isn't moral, sure, it's just like killing pe... (more »)
 
Lau18 said...
Aug. 23, 2013 at 8:37 pm
Awesome essay.. It has really good arguments, i totally agree with this opinion about death penalty it is really not fair.
 
Kimber said...
Mar. 5, 2013 at 8:19 pm
It is not fair for the taxpayers and family of murdered victem to pay for housing, food, clothing, soap, phone calls, AC, Heat, books, schooling on and on and on for somone who murdered another human being. Your parents teach you right from wrong when you are small. There are consequences for every action wether it be good or bad. I say execute those who kill, they will never be repeat offenders who appeal and tie up our courts and billions yearly when they murdered and they know they are guilty... (more »)
 
eamaddox replied...
Apr. 24, 2013 at 11:43 am
I agree if someone has been arrested for murder they should be out down preferably in the same way as they killed.
 
bookmouse replied...
May 16, 2013 at 8:16 pm
Kimber, you said that "Your parents teach you right from wrong when you are small." Not everyone is lucky enough to have parents that teach them that.
 
emma replied...
Feb. 5 at 6:03 pm
Kimber, you know what costs more than keeping prisoners in jail? Death sentences. Like, 2-5 times as much. It is an extremely lengthy process involving appeals and hearings and paying the prosecution and judges, etc. People who whine about paying for a prisoner to live in jail are kidding themselves.
 
Sasa2love said...
Feb. 6, 2013 at 11:07 am
I TOTALLY AGREE
 
Insomnia said...
Jan. 9, 2013 at 8:10 pm
The Death Penalty is wrong. One in twenty people put to death is innocent. Nobody deserves death, even considring the horrible things they've done... they don't. For one life taken another taken as well? Does that seem right to you? The Government's basically saying "If you kill somebody it's against the law! But when you do we come and kill you!" Isn't that lovely? People make mistakes, even continue them. But if you ask me serving life would be way worse. Everyday... (more »)
 
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