Just Punishment? The Death Penalty

Essay by pleasuretymeCollege, UndergraduateB, February 2006

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The death penalty is a just punishment for the horrific crimes that are committed in today's society. Today's criminals knowingly kill the innocent and should receive the appropriate punishment. Sadly, people have become numb to the daily bombardment of these heinous murders that seemingly take place on a daily basis, still the death penalty is supported by a large majority of Americans. The facts and fallacies are continually debated by both sides.

In 1995, Fedell Caffey and Jacqueline Williams, wanting another baby, stabbed to death a pregnant woman and cut the baby from her womb. They then coldly eliminated her 10-year-old daughter and 8-year-old son from this world. A father, without reason, loses his wife and adored children. A mother and father lose their loving daughter and precious grandchildren all in the blink of an eye by the hands of two cold-blooded killers. These merciless killers received their just punishment and the sentence was death, but not all would agree.

On January 11, 2003, Illinois Governor George Ryan reversed the legal decision of the courts and commuted their sentences to life in prison as some felt he turned his back on the grieving families. Others agreed with the Governor. Following the 13th exonerated death row inmates release, the Governor announced a moratorium on executions and was quoted,

"I cannot support a system which, in its administration, has proven so fraught with error and has come so close to the ultimate nightmare, the state's taking of innocent life [...] Until I can be sure that everyone sentenced to death in Illinois is truly guilty, until I can be sure with moral certainty that no innocent man or woman is facing a lethal injection, no one will meet that fate." (Greenwood, 2003 )

The majority of the American public are still in...