The Instigator
destttt_b
Pro (for)
Tied
3 Points
The Contender
Ren
Con (against)
Tied
3 Points

The Death Penalty Should Not Be Legal.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/27/2012 Category: Society
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,150 times Debate No: 22381
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (1)
Votes (2)

 

destttt_b

Pro

I would like to thank my opponent for deciding to debate this topic with each other. I look forward to us debating such a controversial topic and am sure we have lots to say :)

First off, I would like to say that I am aware that 34 out of the 50 states allow the death penalty and this is appalls me. I have noticed in my 18 years of life, that the justice system in our country is far from perfect. But, it is ridiculous how guilty people can walk free at times and the innocent can be executed when they are wrongly accused of a crime.

Recently, a 17 year old boy named Trayvon Martin apparently looked "suspicious" and was murdered - even when young Trayvon was begging for his life. All the poor boy had on him was skittles, an iced tea, the clothes on his back, and a cell phone! The man who murdered him, named George Zimmermann, was part of the neighborhood watch in Florida, an area where the death penalty is allowed, and this man walks free for murder with no arrests, charges, etc. Where is the justice in that?

What about Troy Davis? He was executed by lethal injection in Georgia for a crime he "apparently" committed over 20 years ago, which was the shooting of an off-duty Savannah officer named Mark MacPhail. From the moment he was accused to the last minutes of his life, he still swore his innocence and was not even carrying a gun that night.

Plus, there was the Casey Anthony trial, also in Florida. All of the signs pointed to her killing her baby, Caylee, but she walks away free, too. To this day, I still feel that cases like these are determined by bribery, tricks played by the lawyer, or by even racism, and Casey Anthony is an attractive, young, Caucasian female.

These events are not the first times things like this has occurred in the U.S. It happens way too often, which is why we should not execute any criminals. After all our country has done to fix and improve "the system", these outrageous events should not still be occurring. Since, the legal system often has flaws, who is anyone to truly say whom deserves capital punishment and whom does not? Many argue that the death penalty is decided in an extremely biased manner and are pushed towards lower class citizens, minorities, etc. Adding on, what exactly the justice of killing a killer? He or she should rot in jail for their crime if they commit such a murder. Plus, there are some people who kill out of crime of passion, from the heat of the moment, not being able to take someone's physical/mental/emotional abuse anymore, to protect themselves, or because they have psychological problems and could not control themselves. Not saying that this makes what they have done alright at all, however, they deserve less of a punishment or possibly hospitalization and treatment for mental illness. Some are even executed for other things not even as severe as murder, which isn't even fair.

So, what is it that makes capital punishment alright?
Ren

Con


Arguments and Rebuttals

A1:
First off, i would like to say that I am aware that 34 out of the 50 states...innocent can be executed when they are wrongly accused of a crime.

R1: Your argument is that the Death Penalty shouldn't be legal, and state nothing in your thesis to support that premise. Instead, you present a blind assertion, which is that the majority of states that comprise the U.S. accept and enact the Death Penalty, and that you have negative opinions about that fact. Then, you indicate that there is a possibility of an innocent receiving the Death Penalty and thus being executed, without acknowledging the fact that this is an outlier circumstance that isn't likely to occur. If an innocent person gets as far in our legal system as to be executed, then it's a failure on part of several parties from several institutions, and it would have been a grossly erroneous process over years. Instead, question the parties that would have made such errors, and determine what we can do to prevent such errors in the future.

A2: The Trayvon Martin case.

R2: This has absolutely nothing to do with the Death Penalty, which occurs after due process, and is elected as part of their conviction by a jury of their peers.

A3: The Troy Davis case.

R3: Although this is relevant to the Death Penalty, you simply stated that the man proclaimed innocence, as so many that will proclaim their innocence to their dying breath, no matter how red handed they were caught, or what evidence led to their conviction. You present no evidence or other reason to believe that Troy Davis was innocent.

A4: The Casey Anthony case.

R4: This argument almost appears as though you're claiming that this woman deserved to be put to death, but was allowed to skate by. Suh acknowledgement begs further assessment, which leads to the fact that you indicated that she's both "caucasian" and "attractive." Then, one can't help but notice that all of the other cases you brought up to support your point included minorities. This makes it obvious that this isn't an argument regarding the Death Penalty, but instead, the subjective application of the Death Penalty as you see it, and the fact that you would like the eradicate the institution if its impossible to apply it fairly. This is essentially what you aver in your final summary.

Although that argument appears sound, I must admit that it is specious, at best. Although it's true that Casey Anthony appeared guilty from a third or fourth degree vantage (through television or the newspapers or whatnot), the fact is that it was decided by a jury of her peers after thorough due process. You presented no sound case or reasoning that minorities are disporportionately put to death. Moreover, there are highly publicized incidents when minorities were accussed of horrendous acts, seemed clearly guilty, and were also found innocent, such as in the OJ Simpson case.

Debate Round No. 1
destttt_b

Pro

destttt_b forfeited this round.
Ren

Con

Counterarguments


C1: The Death Penalty is the most viable deterrent, which is one of the properties of the legal system (to deter people from committing crimes, which essentially belies the regulations they're drafted to uphold). The reasoning is clear -- there is nothing anyone holds more dear than their life. In fact, all punishments through the legal system act as deterrents in one way or another by removing basic human rights and needs, thereby causing suffering in one way or another. The primary punishment -- capital punishment, as they call it -- is Death, or the removal of your very right to live. Other than that, they take your liberty, your privacy, and even so much as your personhood, to a degree. Although one may contend that they are not viable deterrents, as crime still exists, they are clearly deterrents to a degree, as criminals certainly try their best to avoid getting caught. It's not as though they'll play cat and mouse for a given period, then hand themselves over when they get tired, because "who gives a damn, it doesn't matter anyway." Rather, people will uproot their lives, give up everything they have, and move to another country, if they know their transgressions are great enough to have their basic needs taken from them and they have a potential of getting caught. In this way, it is quite apparently a deterrent, and without such institutions like imprisonment and the death penalty, there may be a lot more crime.


C2: The law should be a reflection of the will of the people. Rather than an authoritative/patriachical government, we should have one that facilitates the will of society. Although you personally may disagree with the death penalty, it is in the spirit of the consitution to allow the citizens and social leaders of each state decide for themselves whether they should put criminals to death. Although you may disagree with that, it is unjust, and in fact, unconstitutional for you to remove that right.

Debate Round No. 2
destttt_b

Pro

destttt_b forfeited this round.
Ren

Con

Ren forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
destttt_b

Pro

destttt_b forfeited this round.
Ren

Con

Ren forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
destttt_b

Pro

destttt_b forfeited this round.
Ren

Con

Ren forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by destttt_b 4 years ago
destttt_b
Ahhh darn thats actually not what I meant to do :x the first round was supposed to be acceptance then rounds 2-4 would be going back in forth, deeper into the argument, rebuttals, etc. and the 5th round would be the final conclusion. Each round is 3,000 characters or less. The overall debate must be completed by the end of this week if possible (due April 1st for my class). Also do NOT copy and paste, if you have an opinion let it be your OWN opinion in YOUR own words. Do you agree to these terms?
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by ConservativePolitico 4 years ago
ConservativePolitico
destttt_bRenTied
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: Omg if you can't finish a debate, either side, no one deserves to win.
Vote Placed by 1dustpelt 4 years ago
1dustpelt
destttt_bRenTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: ff