The Instigator
com211ncsu
Con (against)
Winning
31 Points
The Contender
sagardin
Pro (for)
Losing
22 Points

DeathPenalty

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/12/2009 Category: Politics
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,747 times Debate No: 10081
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (2)
Votes (9)

 

com211ncsu

Con

I am against the use of the death penalty in the US court system. My main reasoning behind this political position is the high cost required of tax payers to keep an inmate in jail on death row. The average cost to keep a prisoner in jail on death row for one year is $44,000. This amount of money increases every year that the prisoner is in the prison system, which adds up over time for taxpayers.
sagardin

Pro

I understand the concern for taxpayer money, but in reality the average cost of keeping a prisoner in the prison system every year (not on death row) is $22,000 and over a lifetime that adds up to an average of 1.5 million dollars per prisoner. This is an exceptionally larger number than the average $44,000 a year for a death row prisoner who will eventually be executed. So taxpayers would actually be saving money in the long run if the death penalty is in place. Another pro in favor of the death penalty is the ability to deter future crime because if people are aware that the death penalty is a real consequence for crime, they are less likely to commit crimes likely to receive capital punishment.
Debate Round No. 1
com211ncsu

Con

I found that the statistics regarding taxpayer money was correct but studies show that capital punishment might not be a deterrent of crime. A lot of times the statistics regarding deterrence are extrapolated and are not really representative of population and the lives that the deterrence claims to save. Here is an excerpt from a credible journal on the subject; "We show that with the most minor tweaking of the [research] instruments, one can get estimates ranging from 429 lives saved per execution to 86 lives lost. These numbers are outside the bounds of credibility." (The Economists' Voice, April 2006).
sagardin

Pro

I think that it is difficult to get conclusive evidence either way, but I feel that it is rational to assume that people are less likely to commit felonies when they know that losing their lives may be the consequence. To back up my opinion, I found research on the social theory of Deterrence.

The Deterrence Theory states that "criminals are no different from law-abiding people. Criminals "rationally maximize their own self-interest (utility) subject to constraints (prices, incomes) that they face in the marketplace and elsewhere."[11] Individuals make their decisions based on the net costs and benefits of each alternative." (The Heritage Foundation) Recent studies have found that for each execution there are 18 fewer murders (Paul R. Rubin, and Joanna M. Shepherd of Emory University)
As a credible source, I think that these statistics are hard to avoid and show a very real decrease in murders when linked to the death penalty.
Debate Round No. 2
com211ncsu

Con

I believe that the death penalty is not a reasonable punishment because 90 percent of the people sentenced to death are poor and cannot afford their own lawyer. The homicide rates in the states with the death penalty is almost double of those without the death penalty because it cheapens the value of life.

http://www.religioustolerance.org...

If criminals are no different than the people who abide by the law, why should we treat them any differently. Therefore what makes a person capable of receiving the death penalty? Some people disobey the law but aren't given such a harsh consequence. North Carolina alone spends $2.16 million per execution more than the costs of a non-death penalty murder case. So if death penalties are so expensive then why aren't we trying to keep them to a minimum?

https://www.msu.edu...
sagardin

Pro

The problem with NOT instating the death penalty is that the legal system would actually gives incentive to criminals that have not yet been caught and imprisoned. If a criminal kills someone, there is no reason why they should not commit more murders/crimes because they know that the greatest punishment they will receive is life in prison (which they would probably already have from the first murder).

For example :

"The highest murder rate in Houston, Texas occurred in 1981, with 701 murders. Texas resumed executions in 1982. Since that time, Houston has executed more murderers than any other city or state (except Texas) and has seen the greatest reduction in murder, 701 in 1981 down to 261 in 1996 - a 63% reduction, representing a 270% differential." This is significant evidence in favor of having the death penalty in our country.
Debate Round No. 3
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by XimenBao 7 years ago
XimenBao
Kind of went all over the place.

Voted pro even though the new argument in round 4 about incentives to commit more crimes seems to be the same whenever a criminal has reached whatever the maximum possible penalty is.
Posted by philosphical 7 years ago
philosphical
very dull debate...
9 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Vote Placed by TheHitchslap 4 years ago
TheHitchslap
com211ncsusagardinTied
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Vote Placed by Xboy57 4 years ago
Xboy57
com211ncsusagardinTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con used sources
Vote Placed by Willoweed 5 years ago
Willoweed
com211ncsusagardinTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro confirmed Cons arguemtns that the death penatly costs more then keeping people in prision
Vote Placed by com211ncsu 7 years ago
com211ncsu
com211ncsusagardinTied
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Vote Placed by Thade 7 years ago
Thade
com211ncsusagardinTied
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Vote Placed by XimenBao 7 years ago
XimenBao
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Vote Placed by Nails 7 years ago
Nails
com211ncsusagardinTied
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Vote Placed by philosphical 7 years ago
philosphical
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Vote Placed by atheistman 7 years ago
atheistman
com211ncsusagardinTied
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