The Instigator
iDebate711
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
studentathletechristian8
Con (against)
Winning
55 Points

Capital Punishment

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/1/2009 Category: Politics
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 4,738 times Debate No: 9105
Debate Rounds (2)
Comments (15)
Votes (10)

 

iDebate711

Pro

I would like to see my opponent try to prove points/facts on why the death penalty is NOT acceptable in America. Good luck!
studentathletechristian8

Con

I thank my opponent for starting this debate and the readers for this opportunity.

**I would like to note that as The Instigator and Pro, my opponent has the Burden of Proof to prove that the death penalty is acceptable in America. If I am able to prove otherwise, then the resolution shall be negated.**

I would like to start off by defining key terms:

Capital Punishment- punishment by death for a crime; death penalty.

murder- the killing of another human being under conditions specifically covered in law.

*"Capital Punishment" may be replaced with "death penalty" throughout the argument because they have the same meaning.*
========================================

Opening Statement:

The death penalty violates our constitutional ban against cruel and unusual punishment and the guarantee of due process of law and the equal protection of laws. The enactment of the death penalty serves to be inconsistent with fundamental values of our democratic system. Capital punishment does not deter crime, and it is uncivilized in theory and unfair in practice.

========================================

I would like to quote my opponent:

"I would like to see my opponent try to prove points/facts on why the death penalty is NOT acceptable in America. Good luck!"
I will attempt to prove why the death penalty is NOT acceptable in America.

========================================

Contentions:

I. Discrimination and Racism:
a)In 96% of the states where there have been reviews of race
and the death penalty, there was a pattern of either race-of victim
or race-of-defendant discrimination, or both. (Prof. David Baldus report to the ABA, 1998).
b) 98% of the chief district attorneys in death penalty states are
white; only 1% are black. (Prof. Jeffrey Pokorak, Cornell Law Review, 1998).
c) A comprehensive study of the death penalty in North Carolina found that the odds of receiving a death sentence rose by 3.5 times among those defendants whose victims were white. (Prof. Jack Boger and Dr. Isaac Unah, University of North Carolina, 2001).
d) A study in California found that those who killed whites were over 3 times more likely to be sentenced to death than those who killed blacks and over 4 times more likely than those who killed Latinos. (Pierce & Radelet, Santa Clara Law Review 2005).

II. Deterrence:
a) According to a survey of the former and present presidents of the country's top academic criminological societies, 88% of these experts rejected the notion that the death penalty acts as a deterrent to murder. (Radelet & Lacock, 2009)
b) Consistent with previous years, the 2006 FBI Uniform Crime Report showed that the South had the highest murder rate. The South accounts for over 80% of executions. The Northeast, which has less than 1% of all executions, again had the lowest murder rate.

III. Financial Factors:
a) The California death penalty system costs taxpayers $114 million per year beyond the costs of keeping convicts locked up for life. Taxpayers have paid more than $250 million for each of the state's executions. (L.A. Times, March 6, 2005)
b) In Kansas, the costs of capital cases are 70% more expensive than comparable non-capital cases, including the costs of incarceration. (Kansas Performance Audit Report, December 2003).
c) In Indiana, the total costs of the death penalty exceed the complete costs of life without parole sentences by about 38%, assuming that 20% of death sentences are overturned and reduced to life. (Indiana Criminal Law Study Commission, January 10, 2002).
d) The most comprehensive study in the country found that the death penalty costs North Carolina $2.16 million per execution over the costs of sentencing murderers to life imprisonment. The majority of those costs occur at the trial level. (Duke University, May 1993).
e) Enforcing the death penalty costs Florida $51 million a year above what it would cost to punish all first-degree murderers with life in prison without parole. Based on the 44 executions Florida had carried out since 1976, that amounts to a cost of $24 million for each execution. (Palm Beach Post, January 4, 2000).
f) In Texas, a death penalty case costs an average of $2.3 million, about three times the cost of imprisoning someone in a single cell at the highest security level for 40 years. (Dallas Morning News, March 8, 1992).

IV. Public Opinion:
a) The May 2006 Gallup Poll found that overall support of the death penalty was 65% (down from 80% in 1994). The same poll revealed that when respondents are given the choice of life without parole as an alternate sentencing option, more choose life without parole (48%) than the death penalty (47%).
b) A 1995 Hart Research Poll of police chiefs in the US found that the majority of the chiefs do not believe that the death penalty is an effective law enforcement tool.

All of these contentions are directly from this source: http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org....
You wanted me to find contentions to prove my point, and I have.
If you can't pull the file up, the maincenter for death penalty information is: http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org...
================================================

I shall now provide my own, original contentions:
(I will keep them short and sweet because many of the contentions above use sources I would use to prove these points)

I. Cruel and Unusual: The death penalty goes against the eighth amendment. It is cruel and unusual due to the uses of various forms of execution. Even lethal injection can bring hours of pain when it does not function properly.

II. The right to life and killing: Everyone has the right to life. It is immoral and unethical to take the life of someone. The death penalty kills the convicted and levels the government with the perpetrator. It teaches the old "eye for an eye" theory. However, an eye for an eye makes the world go blind. The death penalty encourages more uses of killing the convicted and does not set a healthy example for society.

III. Innocence: There are still cases where the convicted was actually proven innocent, but after the execution was finished. There is margin for error and the death penalty does not give back a life that may be innocent.

IV. Actual Punishment: The death penalty does not give the convicted the best form of punishment. Capital punishment ends the life of the convicted and he/she finds himself/herself getting out of trouble in a relatively painless way. Life in prison is a real punishment for the convicted: it gives him/her an especially long time to think about his/her shame and the way he/she ruined his/her life.

This shall be all for now. I thank my opponent for the debate and the readers for this opportunity. I await a rebuttal.

====================================================

Sources:

1) http://dictionary.reference.com...
2) http://dictionary.reference.com...
3) http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org...
4) http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org...
5) http://users.rcn.com...
Debate Round No. 1
iDebate711

Pro

My opponents definitions are correct.

"The death penalty violates our constitutional ban against cruel and unusual punishment and the guarantee of due process of law and the equal protection of laws. The enactment of the death penalty serves to be inconsistent with fundamental values of our democratic system. Capital punishment does not deter crime, and it is uncivilized in theory and unfair in practice."

The death penalty is not cruel and unusual. It is clearly straightforward and not painful. The first step takes away any feeling you could possibly have.http://www.newscientist.com...

My opponent is lead to believe that the death penalty is involved in racism. The fact that more blacks are executed than whites is due to the fact that there are more blacks than whites in NC.http://www.ncruralcenter.org...
And that Cali study is incorrect, if they let a black run this country, they certainly wouldn't discriminate (racially) who gets executed.
Financial Factors: The d.p. does not cost more in necessarily all states, in TN it costs more to be thrown in jail for life rather than to be executed so therefore; your statement is exaggerated. http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org...

Public Opinion: NOTE: This is in MAY of 2006! 80% down to 65%, this is still over half, not everyone voted. PLEASE NOTE THIS LINK AND LOOK AT PICTURES ON THE SITE. http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org...

Now to rebuttal his contentions... He says its cruel, again, it is not cruel and I stated how earlier in my argument. Second, Everyone does have a right to live but you are a religious person, correct? Methodist!
Well, http://www.gotquestions.org...
http://www.twopaths.com...
Innocence: 135 ppl since 1973, and some were found guilty later on and the majority of the ones found innocent were, black. Hmmmmm.
Actual punishment: It is actual, it's real and it's death. Which scares others to commit murders and is also doing what God would want us to do. Just open the my links.
studentathletechristian8

Con

I thank my opponent for his response and the readers for this opportunity.

I would now like to quote my opponent and make counterarguments.

==========================================

"The death penalty is not cruel and unusual. It is clearly straightforward and not painful. The first step takes away any feeling you could possibly have."

How is it clearly straightforward and not painful? The first step does not take away the feeling of pain. The source my opponent provided states: "Execution by lethal injection may not be the painless procedure most Americans assume, say researchers from Florida and Virginia. They examined post-mortem blood levels of anaesthetic and believe that prisoners may have been capable of feeling pain in almost 90% of cases and may have actually been conscious when they were put to death in over 40% of cases." The title of the article my opponent provided is "Execution by injection far from painless." My opponent's source completely supports my side. The source provides evidence that contradicts my opponent's own point. Clearly, the death penalty is painful and does not take away possible feeling in all instances.

======================================

"My opponent is lead to believe that the death penalty is involved in racism. The fact that more blacks are executed than whites is due to the fact that there are more blacks than whites in NC.
And that Cali study is incorrect, if they let a black run this country, they certainly wouldn't discriminate (racially) who gets executed."

I believe my opponent has misinterpreted my argument. I gave arguments as to why the death penalty is involved with discrimination in its cases and trials. It was more of an argument regarding discrimination. My source provided a study on race and validly concluded that there was discrimination and unfairness involved with trials that ended up with a sentence of capital punishment. This ultimately leads the death penalty to be unfair for all people and not acceptable in the United States, for discrimination is seemingly involved. My opponent's reference to Obama is irrelevant because this debate only refers to capital punishment. I incorporated African Americans into the discussion only to prove a point.

========================================

"Financial Factors: The d.p. does not cost more in necessarily all states, in TN it costs more to be thrown in jail for life rather than to be executed so therefore; your statement is exaggerated."

My opponent has created an innacurate argument. The source provided by my opponent reveals that in Tennessee, a study finds the death penalty both costly and ineffective. My opponent's source breaks the death penalty into some separate studies in states, and many of the studies say that the death penalty is much more costly than life in prison. One paragraph from my opponent's source states: "The average cost of defending a trial in a federal death case is $620,932, about 8 times that of a federal murder case in which the death penalty is not sought. A study found that those defendants whose representation was the least expensive, and thus who received the least amount of attorney and expert time, had an increased probability of receiving a death sentence. Defendants with less than $320,000 in terms of representation costs (the bottom 1/3 of federal capital trials) had a 44% chance of receiving a death sentence at trial. On the other hand, those defendants whose representation costs were higher than $320,000 (the remaining 2/3 of federal capital trials) had only a 19% chance of being sentenced to death. Thus, the study concluded that defendants with low representation costs were more than twice as likely to receive a death sentence." My opponent's source once again heavily helps my side and is detrimental to his. Plus, a quote on my opponent's source stated that the death penalty in Maryland cost more than life term.

=====================================

"Public Opinion: NOTE: This is in MAY of 2006! 80% down to 65%, this is still over half, not everyone voted. PLEASE NOTE THIS LINK AND LOOK AT PICTURES ON THE SITE."

My opponent's source states that the voting in the polls took place on November 16, 2004. This is much more outdated than my source and should take back seat to the one I provided. My source provided evidence that death penalty approval is slipping and becoming less acceptable in the America's eyes.

======================================

"Now to rebuttal his contentions... He says its cruel, again, it is not cruel and I stated how earlier in my argument. Second, Everyone does have a right to live but you are a religious person, correct? Methodist!"

Earlier in my argument, I counterargued my opponet's source and showed it to prove that the death penalty is both cruel and unfair. My opponent concedes that everyone does have a right to live. Since the death penalty takes away the convicted's right to live, then my opponent contradicts his position for this debate and has once again given an argument to my side. I am a Christian, but that does not mean I believe everything in the Bible is true. So what if my opponent gave bible verses that support capital punishment? That does not necessarily make it acceptable. My opponent has not proven that the Bible is a valid source to use in the debate, so no rebuttal is necessary. So the Bible supports the death penalty? That does not make it right or acceptable. One of God's commandments is "thou shalt not kill." The death penalty kills. I have just proven the Bible to prove my side as well, so it is not an accurate source for this discussion.

=================================

"Innocence: 135 ppl since 1973, and some were found guilty later on and the majority of the ones found innocent were, black. Hmmmmm."

My opponent does not use these statistics to make a point or a contention, so no rebuttal is necessary. My opponent does not provide a source for these statistics, so they are not backed up. My opponent needed to clarify what he was arguing with this quote, and unfortunately, he did not.

==================================

"Actual punishment: It is actual, it's real and it's death. Which scares others to commit murders and is also doing what God would want us to do. Just open the my links."

It does not necessarily scare others from commiting murders. The sources I provided showed that the death penalty does not act as a deterrent to murder. My opponent has not backed up his claim with evidence, so it holds no water. Is it really what God would want us to do? God does not want us to kill, and yet the death penalty involves killing. My opponent again fails to make a coherent argument about this. What are "the my links"? I proved most of my opponent's sources either having evidence to support my side or not even relevant to the debate.

============================================

My opponent has not addressed many of my contentions. I have also proved his contentions either useless or unwarranted. In addition, I provided arguments as to why his sources either support my position or are invalid. I heavily urge a Con vote.

I thank my opponent for the debate and the readers for this opportunity. I heavily urge a Con vote.
Debate Round No. 2
15 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by studentathletechristian8 7 years ago
studentathletechristian8
SirAntonyP- I would rather the pedophile be locked up for years than given the death penalty. The death penalty is both morally wrong and is not a real punishment in comparison to years of rotting in prison. Instead of acting with rage and anger, you should first act with logic.
Posted by SirAntonyP 7 years ago
SirAntonyP
Posted by studentathletechristian8 1 week ago
studentathletechristian8
The death penalty should never be used.

And if your children were abused by a pedophile you wouldn't want them strung up? i don't agree with the death penalty, but, in this case i believe it is justified 100%.
Posted by studentathletechristian8 7 years ago
studentathletechristian8
The death penalty should never be used.
Posted by SirAntonyP 7 years ago
SirAntonyP
The death penalty should only be used for pedophiles.
Posted by studentathletechristian8 7 years ago
studentathletechristian8
RFD same as KRFournier
Posted by KRFournier 7 years ago
KRFournier
Conduct - Tie

Spelling/Grammar - Tie

Convincing Argument - Con - Con offered a lot of supporting data. Pro offered some rebuttal, but dismissed the rest of Con's arguments.

Sources - Con - Con not only offered a myriad of sources to support his position, he even used Pro's sources against him.
Posted by MTGandP 7 years ago
MTGandP
RFD is the same as Lexaholic.
Posted by Lexicaholic 7 years ago
Lexicaholic
RFD time:

RFD(Con)
(1) Agreed with Con at the beginning.
(2) Agreed with Con by the end.
(3) Tied. Both sides were cordial.
(4) Tied. There were an equal number of grammatical mistakes. "Which scares others to commit murders and is also doing what God would want us to do. Just open the my links." "less acceptable in the America's eyes." "My opponent is lead to believe..." "I counterargued my opponet's source ..."
(5) Con made the more convincing argument, supported by the facts. Con also showed how the Bible was irrelevant due to its being self-contradictory.
(6) Con used the more reliable sources. Con's sources supported his position. Many of Pro's did not.
Posted by iDebate711 7 years ago
iDebate711
i guess so
Posted by studentathletechristian8 7 years ago
studentathletechristian8
Don't get discouraged and please don't complain. Debate is about learning and improving.
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Vote Placed by DylanRobles 7 years ago
DylanRobles
iDebate711studentathletechristian8Tied
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