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The Death Penalty

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Submitted By ucbigt2006
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The Death Penalty
Capital punishment is putting a condemned person to death. When one reads history of the world, it is seen that many people were sentenced to death because they raised a voice against the king. Ending a person’s life without giving him a chance to repent is not the best of the correctional methods. It might serve as deterrence for others but to what extent is that entirely true will be examined in the paper. The “cruel and unusual” clause in the eighth amendment states that “cruel and unusual punishment” such as torture or lingering death can not be inflicted on anyone as a form of execution. It is however permissible under the 8th Amendment to execute a convict by means of hanging, shooting, electrocution, and lethal gas. There is still confusion about what is actually constitutes “cruel and unusual punishment.” There have been several court cases of interest that have challenged and redefined this concept. In Louisiana ex. Rel. Francis v. Resweber, a convicted murderer was subject to a botched execution, and subsequently argued that a second attempt at execution would be a violation of the Eighth Amendment constituting cruel and unusual punishment.
Previously the forms of execution were very painful. Many were beheaded while many were crucified. Crucifixion was the method used to execute Jesus according to Christianity. Such methods aimed at prolonging the pain before death. “Some may attempt to argue that there is scriptural authorization for the death penalty and so capital punishment will never be listed as an intrinsically evil act” (Peter Black 338). This seems to be true when one consults religious scriptures like the Old Testament for example identifies it to be a legitimate form of execution. The New Testament however talks about crucifixion being used but itself prohibits capital punishment. In 1976, Canada however ended capital...

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