Death penalty has the implication of a death sentence that the capital offenders are subjected to as a result of the crimes that they commit such as murder, repeated crimes, rape and the like. A person who commits acts of this nature is taken as one of a gross danger in as far as existing among the members of the society is concerned and it is deliberated that the person is fit for a death penalty or punishment. Death penalty has been at the center stage for discussion for some time. Some of the most important issues under this debate entail the manner of its execution, the ethics behind taking the life of a person, the cost incurred in programs of death penalty as well as the effectiveness in crime deterrence.
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At current there is a significant shift in the guidelines of executing the punishment and also the methods applicable. In the past, such crude methods such as drowning, impaling, burning, beating quartering and the like. This has of late been replaced by methods such as lethal injection, electrocution, the use of gas chambers all based on the statutes of the state. The current methods are perceived to be humane relative to the methods used in the past. The goal is to reduce the extent of suffering while achieving the goal of execution (Brand, 2006).
According to the opinions of the proponents of death penalty, it is a very effective means of deterring crime and it is a tool that is effectively applied by the police and the prosecutors. They also argue that it leads to the improvement in the society by facilitating that the criminals who have been convicted have no other chance of offending. It is also seen to provide a closure to the victims who survive after they have been offended together with their loved ones and t acts as a penalty to pay for the crimes that the offenders commit (Daniels, 1998).
According to the arguments of the opponents on the other hand, there is a possibility that some of the convicted people suffer for the offenses that they never committed as a result of a wrong conviction. There is also a high possibility that the minorities as well as the poor may be discriminated. They propose for the option of a life imprisonment which they view as being more effective in deterring crime. Death penalty is also seen to encourage “a culture of crime” and that it is more expensive when it is compared with life imprisonment. They also see it as violating the human rights.
There are significant gains that have been made by the opponents of the issue of death penalty in the recent past. This is in consideration of issues such as the cruelty that is associated with lethal injection as well as DNA leading to the freeing of above 200 convicts with a little attention to the debate of scientific evidence which attempts administration of the death penalty is an effective deterrent to murder.
A lot of studies have so far been conducted in this field with results indicating that every death penalty execution contributes to about 3-18 homicides. Further evidence to the study clearly shows that if the execution is delayed for a long time, then it becomes less effective in deterring the occurrence of crime. There are horrifying incidences of death penalty that has led a lot of the opponents as well as scientists in questioning the implications of the data and the opponents fail to acknowledge the findings (Daniels, 1998).
The desire to change one’s life is admirable and we all deserve a second chance really. Seeeking pardon and a restoration of your rights is one way towards pursuing these respectable jobs. In the first place, once an individual gets convicted of a felony, the whole society tends to change the way it perceives that person. Prejudice is something that felons have to learn to deal with and it is really all about your attitude. Just because the society looks at you differently doesn’t mean that you can’t make it. Success is totally commensurate with how much determination you possess and other factors (Egan. 1999).
Solutions to the issue of death penalty are greatly needed. It is recommended that it should not be completely abolished but rather made to be voluntary. The convict should be subjected to a choice between death penalty and life imprisonment. Some convicts may perceive a life imprisonment as being more cruel as compared to death penalty and whatever their choice, they have the right to be given. If the convict chooses to stay in jail for the rest of their life, then this is a good choice since the state can put them in to which will consequently benefit the entire society.
The family of the victim should be given the earnings that the victim works for and this could reduce the pain that they went through (Reakes, 1985). The convict is also deterred from any possible future crime and considering all these positive attributes of the alternative, then it would be the best consideration in the current situation. Killing of the offender is not a cause of peace to the family of the victim but addition pain as well as vengeance is a possibility. If the convict is involved in to some productive work and the earnings given to the families of the victim, then they are able to move through the hard times.
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