The Instigator
mattb
Pro (for)
Losing
15 Points
The Contender
Pricetag
Con (against)
Winning
42 Points

Abortion is murder and the death penalty is not.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/22/2007 Category: Politics
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,069 times Debate No: 853
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (8)
Votes (19)

 

mattb

Pro

I personally believe that the death penalty should be kept legal. I do not understand the argument that liberals make about how abortion should be kept legal but killing a mass murderer should not. If any one is willing to help me see the other side please do.
Pricetag

Con

Since you didn't give much to work with from your opening argument I am just going to tell you why it is perfectly reasonable, in fact, better to be anti-death penalty and pro-choice than to be pro-death penalty and "pro-life".

First I will address the death penalty for which there are many, many flaws. According to a Q & A, "Since 1973...seven people have been executed even though they were probably innocent. A study published in the Stanford Law Review documents 350 capital convictions in this century, in which it was later proven that the convict had not committed the crime." (source-http://aclu.org...). Also, "So far, DNA evidence has directly exonerated 208 wrongly convicted people in the United States, according to the Innocence Project." (source-http://www.huffingtonpost.com...). This simply shows that the courts are not always accurate and do make mistakes. Whatever punishments we dole out should be reversible where as the death penalty is obviously not.

Some may say that the death penalty helps deter homicides, well that assertion is clearly false when juxtaposed to the data. "10 of the 12 states without capital punishment have homicide rates below the national average, Federal Bureau of Investigation data shows, while half the states with the death penalty have homicide rates above the national average. In a state-by- state analysis, The Times found that during the last 20 years, the homicide rate in states with the death penalty has been 48 percent to 101 percent higher than in states without the death penalty." (source-http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org...=). The fact that states without the death penalty have a lower murder rate clearly shows that enforcing such a law does nothing to deter homicide.

Another consideration is cost efficiency. The thought being that if we kill people we won't have to spend as much money on keeping them in prison. This idea is cruel, heartless, and completely incorrect. "In its review of death penalty expenses, the State of Kansas concluded that capital cases are 70% more expensive than comparable non-death penalty cases. The study counted death penalty case costs through to execution and found that the median death penalty case costs $1.26 million. Non-death penalty cases were counted through to the end of incarceration and were found to have a median cost of $740,000." (source-http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org...). I know you may be thinking that this is one state's problem, but if you look on the website you will find that Texas, California, Florida, North Carolina, Indiana, New Jersey, and Tennessee all gave similar reports that show that it costs much more to execute the death penalty sentence than it does for a life in prison sentence, and this trend is going throughout the nation in no way being limited to just the aforementioned states.

Other claims are more philosophical ones. Some may say that because a person's crimes were so heinous that they deserve to be put to death. This idea is hypocritical at best. We should kill people who kill people to show others that it is wrong to kill people? That logic is obviously flawed and is not a good case to keep this system going. The best thing we can do is to keep the prisoners in jail for life or as long as necessary to rehabilitate them. Vengeance should not be a national policy, justice should.

Now on to abortion. Many claim to be "pro-life" and say that abortion is murder. However we must look deeper as to what life really is. Is life a mass of cells? Are a parasite and a human the same thing? If you say that there is a difference, such as children that are born with parasitic twins and need them removed, then you can't at the same time pretend that the embryo is a human. It is in no way independent or shows any signs of life that a human does. Yes at around the third trimester the heart starts beating and at that point things begin to get murky. You can make a case that after the third trimester the embryo has been promoted to the station of being human and should be protected; however, you must also keep in mind that a) the child is still technically a parasite and b) the child is part of the mother's body and if the mother does not want it, the government should not be able to tell the mother what she can and can't do with her own naturally growing body. In this way the abortions can continue until birth when the child is no longer dependent on it's mother for all needs. The child can now breath and gain nutrients with much more independence than when it was inside the womb. Also I think that abortions are absolutely necessary for issues such as rape, incest, and situations that could physically harm the mother. To deny them these completely necessary abortions could be detrimental to the mothers physical and mental being.

Hopefully you can somewhat see the other side now and I look forward to a well thought out debate. I ask that anyone voting here put aside their personal feelings and choose who they think was more effective in debating.
Debate Round No. 1
mattb

Pro

mattb forfeited this round.
Pricetag

Con

Since I don't have much to work with here I will simply reiterate.

The death penalty is not cost efficient, does not deter crime in any way, and perpetuates hatred, violence, and vengeance. There is also a slight chance that an innocent person may be killed. It is much better in many ways to simply keep the person in prison for life.

Abortion is not murder because the embryo does not constitute a human and the embryo is part of the mother's body; therefore, she may do with it what she wishes.
Debate Round No. 2
mattb

Pro

mattb forfeited this round.
Pricetag

Con

I would first like to say to anyone voting that your choice be determined by who was the better debater. As my opponent has not even replied to my points I would think that the choice should be fairly obvious.

However, let me answer his original points because I feel as though I may not have addressed them appropriately thus far.

His point is simply that the death penalty is not murder while abortion is. Wordnet defines murder as:

murder

noun
1. unlawful premeditated killing of a human being by a human being

The only difference between this meaning and the death penalty is that we have put a loophole in place to make killing acceptable in that instance. However as I have laid out the facts it is less efficient cost wise to use the death penalty than life sentences and it does nothing to deter crime and can result in the death of an innocent person; therefore, the death penalty should not be used because it is not only inefficient but immoral as well.

In reference to the abortion situation as I have outlined we have not come to an objective definition of life and as we have not been able to do so we cannot come to the conclusion that abortion is murder because the embryo does not share many of the same characteristics that a living human does. Also, since the child is the property of it's mother then the government does not have the right to tell the mother what she can and can not do with it until it becomes a viably independent entity.
Debate Round No. 3
8 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Posted by shwayze 9 years ago
shwayze
extremely well put dixiechick07...it just doesn't make sense.
Posted by Dixiechick07 9 years ago
Dixiechick07
So we will murder innocent babies and let a mass mureder get away with it by just sitting in jail for at the least 15 years and at the most life, he is probably being treated better than one quarter of the poorest Americans and they are upstanding ctizens trying to pay their bills...which would include paying the taxes that keep food on the table for someone who should've gotten the death sentence! How "Nazi" can you get? Murdering the innocent (Definition of Innocent(from Dictionary.com):free from moral wrong; without sin; pure: innocent children. 2. free from legal or specific wrong; guiltless: innocent of the crime. 3. not involving evil intent or motive)
And let the guilty live (Defintion of guilty
(from Dictionary.com):1. having committed an offense, crime, violation, or wrong, esp. against moral or penal law; justly subject to a certain accusation or penalty; culpable )....so now truth is a lie, enslavement is freedom,and right is wrong, what is the world coming to?
:..(
Posted by shwayze 9 years ago
shwayze
abortion is the murdering of an innocent human life and the death penalty is the killing of a guilty human being. there is a difference between killing someone and murdering someone.
Posted by longjonsilver 9 years ago
longjonsilver
Obviously you win pricetag, but I'm not sure about your deterrent analysis. Check out this site: http://www.nytimes.com...
I'd say that the deterrence effect is a pretty murky realm. Neither side has conclusive evidence.

Also, let me just note that I am still undecided about the death penalty.
Posted by zarul 9 years ago
zarul
Shwayze, there is a mass of trials and appeals involved with the death penalty. The average person on death row sits there for ten years, while someone in for life is often there for about fourty to fifty. The most conclusive study I have yet seen shows that states pay over 2 million per executed, which is far greater than what is paid for live in prison.
Posted by shwayze 9 years ago
shwayze
"The death penalty is not cost efficient, does not deter crime in any way, and perpetuates hatred, violence, and vengeance. There is also a slight chance that an innocent person may be killed. It is much better in many ways to simply keep the person in prison for life."

The death penalty is not cost efficient, but simply keeping the person in prison for life is? The death penalty is WAY more efficient than us taxpayers paying for a criminal to live in the jail for the rest of his life.
Posted by longjonsilver 9 years ago
longjonsilver
I hope pricetag is a good debater. There are plenty of reasons to be pro abortion and anti DP.
Posted by shelbih 9 years ago
shelbih
i agree completely. i was hoping i could debate with you because i am bored right now...
but you have an excellent point and are correct. :]
19 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by liberalconservative 9 years ago
liberalconservative
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Vote Placed by iq_two 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by obama0807 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by artC 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by Dixiechick07 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by ctlaster 9 years ago
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