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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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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 »)
 
HaiThere said...
Jan. 2, 2013 at 8:26 am
Firstly, i feel that no one should be put to death. The person could be innocent, the person might just need mental help or the person might be able to change after years in prison. Secondly, for the people who think that having the death penalty stops murderers from comminting crimes, how come places in europe, where I'm from, don't have an extremely or unusually higher death rate than america. The thought of getting life imprisonment (25 years) is enough to deter most criminals. Death should n... (more »)
 
Sasa2love replied...
Feb. 6, 2013 at 11:05 am
OK first off, you dont know really know anything about the death penalty because sometimes innocent people were killed. Why should murders live for a bad choice they made. If yuo kill them now then they wont have a chance to kill again. Why let them rot inn jail for a horrible thing like that
 
WonderWisher replied...
May 16, 2013 at 11:50 pm
That is so....cruel on so many levels.I agree that some people should recieve the death penalty,but only if the evidence is positive that it WAS the killer and not just someone who was at the wrong place at the wrong time.
 
immamonster replied...
Sept. 7, 2013 at 10:45 am
And what is the purpose of being in jail? Even though the victim achieved justice, but it is only for the sake of the victim, and how about the criminal who is already condemned to death, the criminal taught precisely nothing if the death penalty is implied in the case, because the criminal is no longer alive to learn from his own mistake. And if the criminal is only punished to be in prison, he has more time to change his life, and usually most people do learn from being jailed. Because in gene... (more »)
 
AmeliaMcGrath replied...
Sept. 25, 2013 at 8:52 am
Immamonster, the purpose of being in jail is to think about what you've done and have to struggle to live with yourself for however long you're sentenced. If you get bailed quickly or right away, there isnt much of a punishment, and therefore little incentive to change your ways. Very few people who go to jail for short periods of time decide to straighten out and stop commiting crimes.
 
jaufhgask said...
Oct. 10, 2012 at 8:59 am
awesome dudedeeeeee  
 
imagine78 said...
Dec. 30, 2011 at 6:12 pm
ollymomo- it is actually more expensive to give the death penalty than life. and serial killers and rapists do not deserve "the nicest way"
 
missct16 said...
Dec. 7, 2011 at 12:40 pm
only God gave life and only he can taje it away!!!!!!!how are you going to punish someone FOR, murder....BY murdering them????????ITS WRONG.. LET THE LORD HANDLE IT BECAUSE HE MAKES NO MISTAKES AND EVERYTHING HAPPENS FOR A REASON...MISSCT16!!!!!!!!!
 
Kayboo replied...
Nov. 28, 2012 at 9:12 am
missct16 really? if everything happens for a reason then why do old gross guys rape and kill little girls and boys? That doesnt even make sense.
 
Brunette replied...
Feb. 15, 2013 at 9:23 am
well actually we have free will, we make our own choices in life god doen't make our choices for us, so the reason that an old guy would rape and kill a little girl/boy is because that guy choose to not because god said or forced him to go kill and rape a little girl/boy because its part of his "plan" no that person is wrong. God gave us free will so that we can live our life the way we want to. Some use it for good and some for bad but overall we are responsible for our actions...... (more »)
 
the burning one replied...
Feb. 6, 2014 at 11:02 pm
missct16, yes God is the giver of life. But if you continue to read the Bible, God also gives the government authority to take life and inflict physical harm. With that being said, God says for us to obey and submit to the government.
 
ILOVE said...
Oct. 20, 2011 at 7:58 am
OLA IM INMATHS
 
ollymomo said...
Oct. 16, 2011 at 8:40 pm
In all honesty, people spend forever on death row. It is far more cruel to leave them in prison for the rest of their lives. Not to mention that they are spending taxpayer money by staying in prison for their meals and electricity. Our jails are filling up, and as a result we let prisoners go that should not ever see the outside world again. Serial killers and rapists do not deserve to live in prison for the rest of their lives, and capitol punishment is the nicest way to make it so that they do... (more »)
 
calemitus replied...
Oct. 24, 2011 at 3:03 am
In response:
Generally, it takes more money to sentence an individual to death, what with all the judicial orders to be carried out.
I believe it's more cruel to keep someone in a perpetual limbo between being days from death or waiting for years, rather than having them in a cell with meals, some human interaction, and some other privaleges.
What will killing demonstrate for our society? "Don't kill/harm other people, or we'll kill you"? What does taking an eye for an eye do, but... (more »)
 
fatalbert said...
May 24, 2011 at 9:53 am
wow scrubs
 
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