The Instigator
itsteetime
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
Krios_12
Con (against)
Winning
3 Points

Death Penalty

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
Krios_12
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/16/2012 Category: Politics
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,312 times Debate No: 23644
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (0)
Votes (1)

 

itsteetime

Pro

The crimes of rape, torture, treason, kidnapping, murder, larceny, and perjury pivot on a moral code that escapes apodictic [indisputably true] proof by expert testimony or otherwise. But communities would plunge into anarchy if they could not act on moral assumptions less certain than that the sun will rise in the east and set in the west. Abolitionists may contend that the death penalty is inherently immoral because governments should never take human life, no matter what the provocation. But that is an article of faith, not of fact. The death penalty honors human dignity by treating the defendant as a free moral actor able to control his own destiny for good or for ill; it does not treat him as an animal with no moral sense
Krios_12

Con

The United States has several ways on how criminals should be punished. The most important punishments are serving time in prison and the death penalty. The death penalty is the worst punishment that a judge could sentence a defendant. The death penalty should be removed from the punishments the United States provides for its defendants, because in many cases it is not a 100% chance that the defendant did in fact commit the crime. In cases where the defendant actually did commit the crime, they should still be convicted a life sentence in prison, rather than the death penalty. If the death penalty is sentenced to a defendant, who according to evidence presented in court did in fact commit the crime, instead of this being the worst thing that could ever happen, it could be an easy way out; the defendant to not serve a life sentence. When it comes to money, the United States may be spending more per having prisoners serve life sentences, then sentencing the life sentence. However, the death penalty is still not a way of justice. The death penalty is a waste of taxpayers' money, and has no public safety benefit. Instead, the death penalty has a main motive of revenge, instead of justice. The death penalty can be considered as violating the U.S. Constitution, because it is considered a cruel and unusual punishment, and the guarantees of the due process of law and of equal protection under the law are violated. The States should not give themselves the right to kill human beings, whatever the crime may have been, it is much more revenge than it is justice. According to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the majority of the law enforcement professionals, surveyed agree that capital punishment does not deter violent crime; a survey of police chiefs nationwide found they rank the death penalty lowest among ways to reduce violent crimes. It is obvious that even law enforcement professionals do not agree with the death penalty. The death penalty does not stop crimes that continue in the streets every day, it only kills one human being who may have committed the crime they are being accused of. If money is the issue for having too many prisoners, there is such a thing as rehabilitation centers, which is what prisons are sentenced certain amount of time to serve in the first place. It is much better to have someone spend their life in prison, rather than giving them the easy way out through the death penalty. The doubt of someone actually committing the crime they are being accused of, and going forward with the death penalty is a doubt that will not go away. The fact that an innocent human being was sentenced to the death penalty is a life that is lost and cannot be gained back. The fatal constitutional infirmity in the punishment of death, is that it treats members of the human race as nonhuman, as objects to be toyed with and discarded. Lives should not be toyed with when facing a severe punishment as the death penalty. Aside from the death penalty being the worst punishment, the need for a physician to be present to conduct the procedure is in violation of the oath they take upon, which is to protect lives; this erodes public confidence in the medical profession. The use of a physician's clinical skill and judgment for purposes other than promoting an individual's health and welfare undermines a basic ethical foundation of medicine, which is to do no harm. Instead of the death penalty being a way of stopping crimes, the fact that one person is being named for committing a crime is not accurate, it violates the Constitution, and more importantly those physicians who are certified to save lives , are going against their oath and helping with the prosecution.
Debate Round No. 1
itsteetime

Pro

The execution method may result in pain, either by accident or as an inescapable consequence of death, does not establish the sort of 'objectively intolerable risk of harm' [quoting the opinion of the Court from Farmer v. Brennan, 511 U. S. 825, 842, 846 (1994)] that qualifies as cruel and unusual. Kentucky has adopted a method of execution believed to be the most humane available, one it shares with 35 other States. Kentucky's decision to adhere to its protocol cannot be viewed as probative of the wanton infliction of pain under the Eighth Amendment. Throughout our history, whenever a method of execution has been challenged in this Court as cruel and unusual, the Court has rejected the challenge. Our society has nonetheless steadily moved to more humane methods of carrying out capital punishment.
Society is justly ordered when each person receives what is due to him. Crime disturbs this just order, for the criminal takes from people their lives, peace, liberties, and worldly goods in order to give himself undeserved benefits. Deserved punishment protects society morally by restoring this just order, making the wrongdoer pay a price equivalent to the harm he has done. This is retribution, not to be confused with revenge, which is guided by a different motive. In retribution the spur is the virtue of indignation, which answers injury with injury for public good. Retribution is the primary purpose of just punishment as such. there are some defendants who have earned the ultimate punishment our society has to offer by committing murder with aggravating circumstances present. I believe life is sacred. It cheapens the life of an innocent murder victim to say that society has no right to keep the murderer from ever killing again. In my view, society has not only the right, but the duty to act in self defense to protect the innocent. As of 2008 per Amnesty International, 58 countries, representing about one-third of all countries worldwide, retain the death penalty for ordinary capital crimes, including the United States, plus the following countries:
Afghanistan, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belize, Botswana, Chad, China, Comoros, Democratic Republic of Congo, Cuba, Dominica, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Guinea, Guyana, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Lesotho, Libya, Malaysia, Mongolia, Nigeria, North Korea, Oman, Pakistan, Palestinian Authority, Qatar, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Saudi Arabia, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Taiwan, Thailand, Trinidad And Tobago, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United States Of America, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zimbabwe. The United States is the only westernized democracy, and one of the few democracies worldwide, to not have abolished the death penalty.
The death penalty gives closure to the victim's families who have suffered so much. Some family members of crime victims may take years or decades to recover from the shock and loss of a loved one. Some may never recover. One of the things that helps hasten this recovery is to achieve some kind of closure. Life in prison just means the criminal is still around to haunt the victim. A death sentence brings finality to a horrible chapter in the lives of these family members. It gives prosecutors another bargaining chip in the plea bargain process, which is essential in cutting costs in an overcrowded court system. The number of criminal cases that are plea bargained (meaning the accused admits guilt in return for a lesser sentence or some other concession) can be as high as 80 or 90 percent of cases. With the time, cost, and personnel requirements of a criminal case, there really isn't much of a choice. The vast majority of people that are arraigned are in fact guilty of the crime they are accused. Even if you believe a defendant only deserves life in prison, without the threat of a death sentence, there may be no way to get him to plead guilty and accept the sentence. If a case goes to trial, in addition to the enormous cost, you run the chance that you may lose the case, meaning a violent criminal gets off scot free. The existence of the death penalty gives prosecutors much more flexibility and power to ensure just punishments.
Krios_12

Con

The death penalty may give more closure to the family who have lost someone due to a murder... However, it is not going to bring back their loved one. A life sentence is much better then the death penalty, because the death penalty is allowing the States to have control over the life of someone. Retribution is in fact revenge, the simple fact of sentencing someone to the death penalty is revenge for their supposed crime. The State is never 100% sure if that was the person who committed the crime unless it was caught on video surveillance, even so, the death penalty is not going to stop others outside the court to continue their crimes.
Debate Round No. 2
itsteetime

Pro

Common sense, lately bolstered by statistics, tells us that the death penalty will deter murder. People fear nothing more than death. Therefore, nothing will deter a criminal more than the fear of death. Life in prison is less feared. Murderers clearly prefer it to execution otherwise, they would not try to be sentenced to life in prison instead of death. Therefore, a life sentence must be less deterrent than a death sentence. And we must execute murderers as long as it is merely possible that their execution protects citizens from future murder. Society is justly ordered when each person receives what is due to him. Crime disturbs this just order, for the criminal takes from people their lives, peace, liberties, and worldly goods in order to give himself undeserved benefits. Deserved punishment protects society morally by restoring this just order, making the wrongdoer pay a price equivalent to the harm he has done. This is retribution, not to be confused with revenge, which is guided by a different motive. In retribution the spur is the virtue of indignation, which answers injury with injury for public good. Retribution is the primary purpose of just punishment as such. Rehabilitation, protection, and deterrence have a lesser status in punishment than retribution. No system of justice can produce results which are 100% certain all the time. Mistakes will be made in any system which relies upon human testimony for proof. We should be vigilant to uncover and avoid such mistakes. Our system of justice rightfully demands a higher standard for death penalty cases. However, the risk of making a mistake with the extraordinary due process applied in death penalty cases is very small, and there is no credible evidence to show that any innocent persons have been executed at least since the death penalty was reactivated in 1976. The inevitability of a mistake should not serve as grounds to eliminate the death penalty any more than the risk of having a fatal wreck should make automobiles illegal.
Krios_12

Con

The reduction of crime does not exist when the death penalty is practiced. The states that have the death penalty laws do not have lower crime rates or less murder rates. Those States that have abolished capital punishment show no significant changes in either crime nor murder rates. The death penalty does not have deter effect. Each execution deters a certain number of murders that have been thoroughly discredited by social science research.
Debate Round No. 3
itsteetime

Pro

Many opponents present, as fact, that the cost of the death penalty is so expensive (at least $2 million per case?), that we must choose life without parole ('LWOP') at a cost of $1 million for 50 years. Predictably, these pronouncements may be entirely false. JFA [Justice for All] estimates that LWOP cases will cost $1.2 million-$3.6 million more than equivalent death penalty cases. There is no question that the up front costs of the death penalty are significantly higher than for equivalent LWOP cases. There also appears to be no question that, over time, equivalent LWOP cases are much more expensive... than death penalty cases. Opponents ludicrously claim that the death penalty costs, over time, 3-10 times more than LWOP. The fact that blacks and Hispanics are charged with capital crimes out of proportion to their numbers in the general population may simply mean that blacks and Hispanics commit capital crimes out of proportion to their numbers. Capital criminals don't look like America. No one is surprised to find more men than women in this class. Nor is it a shock to find that this group contains more twenty-year-olds than septuagenarians. And if — as the left tirelessly maintains — poverty breeds crime, and if — as it tiresomely maintains — the poor are disproportionately minority, then it must follow — as the left entirely denies — that minorities will be 'overrepresented' among criminals. The next urban legend is that of the threadbare but plucky public defender fighting against all odds against a team of sleek, heavily-funded prosecutors with limitless resources. The reality in the 21st century is startlingly different... the past few decades have seen the establishment of public defender systems that in many cases rival some of the best lawyers retained privately... Many giant silk-stocking law firms in large cities across America not only provide pro-bono counsel in capital cases, but also offer partnerships to lawyers whose sole job is to promote indigent capital defense.
Krios_12

Con

When the death penalty is sentenced, in many instances it is possible that the defendant in the case is innocent. There has been a reinstatement of the death penalty, where 87 people have been freed from death row; and later proven innocent. Imagine if those innocent people had been condemned to the death penalty and later found that they were innocent. Playing with someone's life in the matter should not be allowed. The consequences of life and death, should be standard in our system of justice, for example just as we do for our airlines. It is a central pillar of our criminal justice system that it is better that many guilty people go free than that one innocent should suffer... Let us reflect to ensure that we are being just. Let us pause to be certain we do not kill a single innocent person. This is really not too much to ask for a civilized society
Debate Round No. 4
itsteetime

Pro

Accepting capital punishment in principle means accepting it in practice, whether by the hand of a physician or anyone else. If one finds the practice too brutal, one must either reject it in principle or seek to mitigate its brutality. If one chooses the latter option, then the participation of physicians seems more humane than delegating the deed to prison wardens, for by condoning the participation of untrained people who could inflict needless suffering that we physicians might have prevented, we are just as responsible as if we had inflicted the suffering ourselves. The AMA [American Medical Association] position should be changed either to permit physician participation or to advocate the abolition of capital punishment. The hypocritical attitude of 'My hands are clean — let the spectacle proceed' only leads to needless human suffering. "Defense attorneys... routinely file all manner of motions and objections to protect their clients from conviction. Attorneys know their trial tactics will be thoroughly scrutinized on appeal, so every effort is made to avoid error, ensuring yet another level of protection for the defendant. They [death penalty opponents]... have painted a picture of incompetent defense lawyers, sleeping throughout the trial, or innocent men being executed. Their accusations receive wide media coverage, resulting in a near-daily onslaught on the death penalty. Yet, through all the hysteria, jurors continue to perform their responsibilities and return death sentences. Innocent people on death row unfortunately suffer the consequences of the death penalty not to fault of their own but the jurors.
Krios_12

Con

The federal study of the costs of the death penalty throughout the past 25 years, have all concluded that the cost of the death penalty is amounts to a net expense to the state and the taxpayers. The Death penalty is so much more expensive than a system of handling similar cases with a lesser punishment. These factors combine a list of the cost of the death penalty. The list consists of pre-trial time, there are more experts needed, there is much more attorneys that must be included, there should be two trials instead of one. The death penalty should be abolished.
Debate Round No. 5
No comments have been posted on this debate.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Travniki 4 years ago
Travniki
itsteetimeKrios_12Tied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro dropped several arguments and began new ones each round. She ignored parts of Cons arguments that were hard to deal with