Capital Punishment Debate

Essay by JessLynn04High School, 11th gradeA+, February 2004

download word file, 4 pages 4.0

Affirmative Constructive Speech

Resolved that the Illinois state legislature should reinstate capital punishment. Right before leaving office and one day before the opening statements of the racketeering trial of his former chief of staff were to begin, Governor Ryan decided to commute the sentence of all 167 condemned inmates in Illinois to life in prison. It has been said by many government officials that this order was just a "smoke screen" to deflect attention from a political scandal that was threatening to become the governor's legacy. It is obvious that the reason behind the moratorium (halting of all executions) and the commuting of the sentences was not based on moral values or popular votes. It was based on Mr. Ryan wanting to build a legacy and nothing more. In fact, statistics will show that the majority of the population is in favor of capital punishment. Most agree that the death penalty is a necessary tool that reaffirms the sanctity of human life while assuring that convicted killers will never again prey upon others.

Above all, the Illinois state legislature should reinstate capital punishment. I am sure that my worthy opponent will claim that many innocent people have been executed, and he will be wrong in his claim. No actual evidence exists that proves any innocent people have been executed. In fact, all of the studies cited by death penalty opponents who claim innocent people could have been executed rely on cases where exoneration occurred before execution took place, not cases where any innocent people were actually executed or proven innocent. Mr. VanAllen may also say that by killing a murderer, we encourage, endorse, or legitimize unlawful killing; however, imprisonment is not thought to legitimize kidnapping, neither are fines thought to legitimize robbery.

There is a need for change because convicted...