The Instigator
chrimill
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
biancabear767
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points

Death penalty should be abolished in the U.S. at the present time

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/30/2013 Category: Politics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 533 times Debate No: 39679
Debate Rounds (5)
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Votes (0)

 

chrimill

Pro

The death penalty does more harm than good in today's society. At one time, it may have served a useful purpose, but it is no longer necessary and the small positives it may have are outweighed by the negatives.

The death penalty is not able to be overturned, so any mistake in its application cannot be corrected because we do not have the power to resurrect people. Some propose that capricious application of the death penalty is flawed, but feel that the death penalty needs to be there for truly heinous crimes. Others argue the pragmatic merits, it is cheaper to execute than detain for life and it provides prosecutors with a bargaining chip when making deals with suspects that are willing to plead guilty. I acknowledge these facts but I believe that their value is either inconsequential or requires a trade-off that makes it worse.

Executing instead of imprisoning is cheaper, but only if there is no extra level of proof necessary for the application of the death penalty. The current process that the Supreme Court does not deem to be cruel and unusual actually costs more than imprisonment. http://www.deathpenalty.org...
One must prove that either a quickie process for the death penalty application is needed, with a corresponding greater probability of false convictions, or abandon cost as a factor in the merits of the death penalty.

The morality of the death penalty being necessary for heinous crimes is either a misguided notion that the death penalty is needed to provide closure to the victim's family and loved ones, or is needed to restore some type of cosmic balance. Since the latter is not very much en vogue these days, I will assume that the former is the primary argument. It is not valid when weighed against other factors. The one being executed has family and loved ones, what about their well-being? Some also argue that it is more punishment to live with yourself than have the opportunity to end it. Either way, it seems like a case of special pleading, because everyone can construct a hypothetical scenario that would make the death penalty the correct action. Laws are based on the totality of the situation, and special cases need to be evaluated against the whole body of evidence, they do not form an argument all by themselves.
biancabear767

Con

Our jails are filled with criminals- murderers, robbers, kidnappers, and rapists. All have committed crimes, and all are locked away. However, we cannot keep putting more and more people in, for our jails are already full and sometimes, too full. That's why it is in our best interest to have the death penalty. In the extreme conditions, when someone has committed a crime so heinous, we cannot just jail them away with the rest of our criminals. The death penalty may be seen as morbid, but it is an effective and less-costly way to keep criminals off the streets. Remember that saying?- "An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth" The person who committed this crime knew fully aware what they were getting into (If not, than they can plead the insane of mind case). Why should we pay for their mistakes? "An eye for an eye" is exactly right. When it comes to law, we cannot give in.
Debate Round No. 1
chrimill

Pro

Full jails is not an argument, I have not heard of evidence that we don't have space for new prisoners that could be adequately found by executing prisoners. Are you suggesting we expand the death penalty usage to more crimes so that we can clear some space in our jails? Rapists and kidnappers don't usually get the death penalty, so it sounds like you are advocating for exapnsion of the death penalty, when you haven't even addressed any of my arguments for abolishing it. Are you comfortable with the idea of executing people that may be innocent, just to save money? Again, I'm not sure how to respond because you didn't really respond to my argument, it seems like you just posted a new argument instead.
biancabear767

Con

biancabear767 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
chrimill

Pro

If the death penalty is not abolished, then that means there will be people that are killed by the state. The state will have little incentive to self-police itself on the fact that these people were executed justly, since they cannot correct the mistake that they made, the person is already dead. This means that it will end up falling on non-profit organizations to look into the merits of these people's death, since there is not a profit incentive for a private company to do this work. Non-profits are at a severe money disadvantage relative to the state, therefore it is likely that the state can stall to ensure that its tracks are covered on the executions it performs. Simply put, when someone is dead they are dead, and there is very little incentive for anyone to find out the truth. Even the person's family will not be inclined to spend large amounts of money and time to find out the truth. After all, the person is still dead, the truth may vindicate their name but they will still be dead. In fact, one might argue that a criminal's family would prefer not to know the true innocence or guilt, if they were innocent then they will feel guilty for not doing more while the family member was on death row.
biancabear767

Con

biancabear767 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
chrimill

Pro

Seeing as how my opponent has forfeited the last two rounds I will await a response to the arguments that I have laid out.
biancabear767

Con

biancabear767 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
chrimill

Pro

I have made my case, my opponent has not even rebutted any of my arguments, I trust that the voters will decide this debate in a just manner.
biancabear767

Con

biancabear767 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
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