The Instigator
Jlconservative
Pro (for)
Winning
18 Points
The Contender
candice
Con (against)
Losing
12 Points

Death Penalty

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/11/2008 Category: Politics
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,602 times Debate No: 3186
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (1)
Votes (10)

 

Jlconservative

Pro

Candice I think we have to be friends now

The topic of this debate says it all basically, The death penalty is a warning, just like a lighthouse throwing its beams out to sea. We hear about shipwrecks, but we do not hear about the ships the lighthouse guides safely on their way. We do not have proof of the number of ships it saves, but we do not tear the lighthouse down.
candice

Con

You know we do, Steve! We'll find steady opponents in one another, I think. To be honest, I support the death penalty. Although, I see why you think I do not. It's marked wrong on my profile! There's no reason I can't be con, though. Thank you for taking the time to look at my profile to see what we could argue about, I'm flattered! So, down to business...

Not only is the death penalty easily opposed morally, it's functionality in accordance with our National economy is proving to be financial damaging. Not only do we pay millions of dollars in public defense attorney's and prison fee's each year, we need to process many MANY people through the court system. Extra time in court caused by these death sentence cases (death sentence trials take longer)are making other's right to a speedy trial less expeditious. Most usually, those sentenced to death appeal, slowing down and causing MORE court fee's, and public defense attorney fee's.

Why slow down our justice system, and cost our Nation more money that it otherwise be using for other things such as our school systems, funding our policeman, and fireman, or ANYTHING that would actually help our society. All this wasted, simply for the gratification that this person will die for they're crimes. Everyone will die in the end, why trouble our economy about it?
Debate Round No. 1
Jlconservative

Pro

Of course we do!

Ok lets see First of all, the slogan misses an important point. The death penalty does not punish people for killing, but for murder. Killing is justified when it is done in self-defense. Killing means to cause death. Murder, on the other hand, is defined as, "the unlawful and malicious or premeditated killing of one human being by another" (for the less observant, this definition cannot be applied to the death penalty, because the death penalty is lawful, non-malicious, and is not carried out by an individual but by the government). "Kill," "murder," and "execute" are not interchangeable terms. Death penalty opponents would like us to believe otherwise. Just because two actions result in the same end does not make them morally equivalent. If it were so, legal incarceration would be equated with kidnapping, lovemaking with rape, self-defense with battery, etc.1 Therefore, the slogan is better stated, "We execute people to show people that murder is wrong." Not quite as catchy, is it?

Morality is defined as "the principles of right and wrong." As moral creatures, humans deserve praise for good deeds, and punishment for bad ones. Punishment may range from a slap on the wrist to death, but the punishment must fit the crime. This is known as lex talionis, or in common jargon, "an eye for an eye." Abolitionists often insist that if we argue for lex talion justice we must be prepared to rape rapists, beat sadists, and burn down the houses of arsonists. Certainly, this is the case if we take the lex talion literally, and the criminals do deserve those punishments, but we needn't take it literally. The ancient Jews did not.2 They allowed for monetary compensation for physical or property damage.

Why then, if it is not morally okay to rape rapists, is it acceptable to execute murderers? The answer is simple. There is no redeeming value to carrying out the former punishment. Raping the rapist will only cause someone else to degrade themselves by doing it. It will not prevent the rapist from raping again. Executing murderers, however, prevents them from committing their crime again, and thus protects innocent victims. The good, therefore, outweighs the bad, and the executioner is morally justified in taking the murderer's life. On the other hand, if the abolitionist argues that killing is always wrong, then he must also concede that killing in self-defense is unacceptable and should be punished. Few, if any, however, are willing to do so. The abolitionist may choose to argue that the state should never kill. But consider also the scenario of protecting someone else's life. Are police officers (the state) justified in killing attempted murderers to save a victim's life? If the answer to this question is yes, then no moral arguments will stand up against the death penalty.

Morally, it is wrong to incarcerate someone for murder. A sentence of life in an air-conditioned, cable-equipped prison where a person gets free meals three times a day, personal recreation time, and regular visits with friends and family3 is a slap in the face of morality. People will say here that not all prisons are like the one cited. This betrays an ignorance, however, of current trends. Eventually, criminal rights activists will see to it that all prisons are nice places to go. But regardless of the conditions of a particular prison, someone who murders another human being can only be made to pay for his actions by forfeiting his own life. This is so, simply because a loss of freedom does not and cannot compare to a loss of life. If the punishment for theft is imprisonment, then the punishment for murder must be exponentially more severe, because human life is infinitely more valuable than any material item.

Take, for example, a murderer who took the life of a teenager. The parents of the victim will be among the taxpayers that pay for his meals and his cable television. Should he choose to take advantage of college courses the prison may offer, the parents of the victim will be indirectly financing those expenses as well. Nothing could be further from justice. It is of this type of situation that the abolitionist approves. Somewhere along the line, their priorities have been turned upside down.

Abolitionists claim that the death penalty is a means of revenge. It is not. One way for the victim's family to get revenge would be to go out and murder a member of the murderer's family in order to get him to experience the same type of suffering he put them through. If the purpose of the state in executing murderers was retribution or revenge, then criminals would be executed in the same way they that murdered their victims. But alas, the point of the death penalty is not to see how much pain can be unleashed on the murderer but to bring him to justice.

In reality, the murderer actually gets off easy when he is sentenced to death in the United States. There are five methods of execution used in the United States: lethal injection, electrocution, lethal gas, hanging, and firing squad. The most commonly used methods today are lethal injection and the electric chair. If a person is lethally injected, he is first put to sleep with thiopental sodium, and then he is administered potassium chloride that will stop his heart. The criminal dies from anesthetic overdose and respiratory and cardiac arrest while he or she is unconscious. As for the electric chair, there is an initial jolt of 2,300 volts (9.5 amps) which lasts for eight seconds, followed by a low-voltage jolt of 1,000 volts (4 amps) for 22 seconds and finally a jolt of 2,300 volts (9.5 amps) for eight seconds. The murderer is rendered unconscious immediately, or within the first eight seconds at most, as the initial high-voltage jolt kills the brain.The subsequent jolts stop the heart in case it is still beating. Compare this to the heinous crimes of the murderer, where often the victim will go through excruciating pain for minutes, hours, or sometimes days. The minute amount of pain experienced by the murderer on death row does not even begin to compensate for the pain of the victims.
candice

Con

<>

The person convicted with murder will be in prison for life, if not given the death penalty. So they will not have the chance to be out in society to kill again. So, basically the above statement is false, because the supposed "victims" would be otherwise protected by the criminals life long incarceration. There can be a no parole stipulation put on sentencing, by the way.

<>

There is a big difference in killing in the heat of violence, and killing a trapped, and otherwise harmless criminal. There is no way that this person can kill again, so your arguments are rubbish in section of your argument. Morally, it makes a world of sense, because why continue death where it is NOT NECESSARY.

<>

If you were a lifelong inmate, I doubt you would enjoy it, and think it a nice place to be. By the by, these death roll inmates don't go straight to the chair, or to get the lethal injection right after they're death sentence. For years, and YEARS, we still must pay for they're food, and whatever else they need. Isn't it MORE of a punishment, to prolong the imprisonment? After death, your no longer in jail. Your no longer anything, if you don't belive in an after life. Why do them the favor of killing them to get them out of a sentence?

Steve, you state that it is not for revenge people want the death penalty for murderers. Then, you go on to talk about the pain that these people feel while being murdered, compared to those they've killed. The definition of revenge, is: to exact punishment or expiation for a wrong on behalf of, esp. in a resentful or vindictive spirit. The death penalty sure sounds like revenge to me.

Also, you failed to address AT ALL my taking notice of the cost inefficiency of this method.
Debate Round No. 2
Jlconservative

Pro

Jlconservative forfeited this round.
candice

Con

Unfortunately my opponent couldn't find any rebuttal good enough for my arguments, and noticing him NOT at all retorting on my above comments on his weak arguments.
Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by candice 8 years ago
candice
Thank you for reading this debate!
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