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Is the Death Penalty Actually Effective?

In: English and Literature

Submitted By fallen0415
Words 1473
Pages 6
John Vera
English 101H
Professor Kaufman
23 October 2014
Is the Death Penalty Actually Effective?
Of the many crimes one could commit, murder, felony manslaughter, espionage, genocide, and treason are a few of the crimes that can lead to one paying with the ultimate price, their own life. Lethal injection, gas chamber, firing squad, electrocution, and hanging are the methods of death afforded for those who commit such heinous acts. However, does knowing the possible consequences of capital offenses deter individuals from committing the crimes? Did it make you stop and think? In the United States the death penalty is used as a punishment for capital offenses. These specifically can vary from state to state, but commonly include first-degree murder, murder with special circumstances, rape with additional bodily harm, and the federal crime of treason. (Facts) The goal of the death penalty then, is to deter these crimes from even taking place, to be so feared that offenders think twice about committing such horrible crimes. But does it? In the following paper, the above question will attempt to be answered by looking at the background of capital punishment and the death penalty, the ideas behind it, viable alternatives, and finally, the effectiveness of the death penalty at deterring crime. Early death penalty laws date back to the Eighteenth Century B.C.. The death penalty also had a heavy presence in the Fourteenth Century Hittite Code, the Seventh Century Draconian Code of Athens, and the Fifth Century Roman Law of the Twelve Tablets. (History, 1) Today, thirty-four states in the United States of America still practice the death penalty as a means of punishment for capital offenses and heinous crimes. The death penalty debate is one that Americans are no strangers to; it has been abolished and repealed numerous times throughout our history. Two of the first...

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