Killing Our Children: Capital Punishment
Sixteen. Driver?s licenses and birthday parties. A momentary lapse in judgment, and the death penalty? In the U.S. thirty eight states allow capital punishment, and twenty three of them allow capital punishment for children as young as sixteen. In many states in this great nation of ours, youth who make poor decisions are not given the chance to rehabilitate from a single moment?s choice; they are simply given the needle. Capital punishment for juveniles is wrong, and needs to be abolished.
Kids in the nation every year are being sentenced in 23 states, as young as sixteen, to die for momentary lapses in judgment. Throughout human history, we have felt the need to judge each other and condemn each other. As adults, we are limiting the lives of our children. The first case where capital punishment was enforced on a minor (under the age of 18) was in Massachusetts in 1642 (Cothern).
This punishment seems to be from another time, but executions of kids still happen in 23 states today. It is condoned by some as justice and order, but others argue that it takes life away aimlessly. In 2001, 65 people were executed for the crimes they were convicted of in the United States, many of them for crimes they committed while they were still minors. 361 people have been killed for crimes they committed while they were juveniles (Cothern). In the state of Texas alone 450 people are currently sentenced to death and are waiting on that state?s death row.
?As of June 2000, 74 adults, ranging in age from 18 to 41 years old, remain on death row for crimes committed as juveniles: All 74 offenders are male, Seventy-three percent committed their crimes at age 17, and Sixty-three percent are minorities?They have...