The Instigator
Pase66
Pro (for)
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The Contender
Vortex-Blue123
Con (against)
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The Death Penalty

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/12/2015 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 484 times Debate No: 75194
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (4)
Votes (0)

 

Pase66

Pro

Question: The Death Penalty Should not be Abolished.

Rules:
1.) Con agrees to support the notion that the Death Penalty Should be Abolished.
2.) The BOP is shared
3.) Con agrees to forfeit the last round
4.) Format
Round 1
Pro- Rules
Con- Opening Statement
Round 2
Pro- Opening Statement
Con- Rebuttals
Round 3
Pro- Rebuttals
Con- Rebuttals
Round 4
Pro- Rebuttals
Con- Closing Statement
Round 5
Pro- Closing Statement
Con- Waives Round
5.) Definitions
Death Penalty- "The punishment of execution, administered to someone legally convicted of a capital crime."
http://www.oxforddictionaries.com...
Abolished- "Formally put an end to (a system, practice, or institution)."
http://www.oxforddictionaries.com...
6.) By accepting this debate, Con agrees to the rules stated above.

I would like to wish Con the best of luck, and I look foreword to an interesting debate.
Vortex-Blue123

Con

I would like to thank the opposition, first off, and wish them the best of luck.

"Death Penalty- "The punishment of execution, administered to someone legally convicted of a capital crime.""

Murder is counted as a capital crime therefore the death penalty must be put into place. The death penalty does not lower the number of murders but raise them. The person sentencing the murderer to death is therefore, to an extent, a murderer, that person arranging the death is now, also, a murderer and the person who has been given the job is now a murderer. Why, then, must they not perish also? You may fight that they are doing their job but so are hitmen and assassins, yet, the death penalty would certainly count for them.
"The death penalty is murder by the government. As a nation, we have prided ourselves in our government, its justice and truth. However, can we continue to call our government fair if we do not hold it to the same rules we do its people? Murder by a citizen will have consequences, yet a government-approved "murder is not only acceptable, but enforceable. What message do we send the American people, and other countries, for that matter, if we continue to be a "nation that kills its citizens, a nation that enforces the most barbaric form of punishment?"" [as stated by teen ink http://www.teenink.com...... paragraph 5]

If we are raising children to this law what is to stop them believing that one turn deserves another? If a child was being unruly and violent on the playground what is to stop that child that violence beyond self-defence is alright? Children are more intelligent then they are often given credit for but they are swayed easily also and morals you learn as a child often stay with you throughout life. If a supposed child who grew up thinking this is a valid moral had the death of a sibling through murder is it not possible they would, thinking it's moral, murder a family member of the murderer or the murderer themselves? We then have another murderer, and 2 more murders [the victim of this new murderer and the murderer of this murderer], that could have been avoided.

Last of all the death penalty is irreversible. If the accused murderer is wrongly accused we have lost an innocent life. An example is Cameron Todd Willingham from Texas. He was executed in 2004 before it was discovered he was innocent. As the death penalty is final, there is not time to prove the accused innocent after the judge's decision.
" District Judge Jed S. Rakoff of the United States Second Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan "argued against the death penalty: "In brief, the Court found that the best available evidence indicates that, on the one hand, innocent people are sentenced to death with materially greater frequency than was previously supposed and that, on the other hand, convincing proof of their innocence "often does not emerge until long after their convictions. It is therefore fully foreseeable that in enforcing the death penalty a meaningful number of innocent people will be executed who otherwise would eventually be able to prove their innocence."" [ http://www.teenink.com... ]
Debate Round No. 1
Pase66

Pro

I would like to thank Con for accepting this debate.

1.) Human Rights
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness." (http://www.archives.gov...). As many know, this is a quotation from the Declaration of Independence, a document forged by the founding fathers of America declaring their independence from Britain.

"Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted." (http://billofrightsinstitute.org...) This is the eight amendment in the American Bill of Rights. What I would like to focus on is the last part, "nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted."

These two quotes serve a purpose. They highlight the basis of what many (myself included) consider inherent, human rights. But what do these have to do with the death penalty? There are two parts I would like to focus on, the right to life, and the non imposition of cruel and unusual punishments. Many argue against the death penalty using these two points, that everybody, no matter what the deed, is entitled to life and entitled to not enduring cruel and unusual punishment. But why? Let me ask a question in the form of an example; should a person who kidnapped, raped, and murdered an innocent child (or children, for that matter) be entitled to the same human rights that the person deprived from the child? Many would argue that they are, on the basis that they are a person. But why should we give that person human rights? That person took those rights away from a child, and on what basis are they allowed their human rights? On no basis. You see, the moment they took away someone else's inherent rights, they forfeited their own. Thus, the only worthy punishment would be too take away their rights, their rights of life. "But what of cruel and unusual punishment?" When the person kidnapped, raped, and murdered the child, they inflicted "cruel and unusual punishment" on that child. If they are willing to inflict that on a child, why must we NOT inflict punishment on that person?

You see, I'm proposing something (I believe) to be fairly new; a person forfeits their human rights when they deprive someone else of theirs. I would like you to think of it this way; there are two equal, poor people, both of whom who have the same amount of food. Person 1 takes all of person 2's food, and keeps it for himself. Now, if we were to give food (the amount both people started out in the beginning) to the group of people, it would only be fair we give the food to person 2, as they got their food taken by person 1. So, by depriving person 2 of their food, person 1 forfeits their right to get food. The same follows with the death penalty. When a person deprives someone else of their human rights, they forfeit theirs.

2.) Cost
Now, the death penalty instituted in America costs a lot, more than it would cost to incarcerate that person (http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org...). But this is because (from an American perspective), we use many different chemicals to inject into the person and kill them, for the sake of being humane. But, following from the conclusion in part 1 (a person who deprives someone else of their human rights forfeits theirs), a person forfeits their rights to a not be subject to a "cruel and unusual punishment". Now, if we are not to worry about "cruel and unusual" punishments, there are much more low, cost effective ways to execute a person. Although I won't go into much detail, a bullet costs much, much less than a life sentence.

3.) Conclusion
I hope I have been able to show why the death penalty should not be abolished, and why it is okay for the institution to still exist.
Again, I would like to thank Con for accepting this debate, and look foreword to the future rounds.
Vortex-Blue123

Con

If burning and beheading is inhumane way to kill why are we stating some ways are not? Dead is dead, it does not matter how the victim is killed they are still brought to an end. There is no humane way to kill. If this suspected murderer killed their victim with lethal drugs would that be passed off as humane? Of course not yet, if it is the government who do so should all laws of humanity be thrown out the window? How is this thought of as fair?
"The 2006 execution of Angel Nieves Diaz, by a so-called 'humane' lethal injection, took 34 minutes and required two doses. Other methods of execution used around the world include hanging, shooting and beheading. The nature of these deaths only continues to perpetuate the cycle of violence and does not alleviate the pain already suffered by the victims" family." Argues Amnesty.org [ http://www.amnesty.org.au... ]
"The death penalty is degrading. It turns states into prescription drug abusers, killing prisoners with drugs like sodium thiopental that manufacturers are on record as stating should only be used to healing purposes." Is another argument made on another page of amnesty.org [http://blog.amnestyusa.org... ]

I do not believe that these criminals should walk free around us but they should, however, still keep their lives. I"m proposing that a worthy punishment is a lifetime sentence and, possibly, community service.
Debate Round No. 2
Pase66

Pro

Rebuttal

Con's Opening Statement
1.) Con claims that when the government executes someone, they become murderers. This is not true. In almost any definition you check, murder is the unlawful killing of a person. If they law sentences someone to death, it wouldn't be unlawful murder, but a lawful execution.

2.) We do hold government officials to the same standards. If a government official commits murder, ideally they are subject to the same punishment that a normal person gets if they commit murder.

3.) In the child example, although I didn't fully understand it, I will give my rebuttal. The murderer of the child's sibling would be subject to the death penalty, as stated in my argument from the previous round, "If one deprives someone of their human rights, than they forfeit their human rights".

4.) Yes, accidental executions are a tragedy. That is why we must reform the death penalty, not get rid of it entirely. An example would be Christianity. In the past, Christianity has been the cause of many terrible stuff happening, such as the Salem Witch Trials and The Spanish Inquisition, just to name a few. But, instead of getting rid of Christianity all together, after much reformation, we were able to make it an acceptable (though with some quirks) ideology.

Rebuttal to Con's Rebuttal
1.) First of all, if we are executing somebody, there is no need for a "humane" way to kill them. For when they killed someone else (which is inhumane), they forfeited their rights to a humane death. But, a humane way to kill someone would be to cause no pain.

2.) It is fair to kill someone who murdered another person.

3.) A very easy way to kill someone would be a simple bullet to the head. There would be almost no pain, and it would take an instant. (http://kotaku.com...)

4.) Murderers should not even have a lifetime in prison. Why should the government pay for the livelihood of a person who has committed murder? Why should tax dollars go towards keeping that person incarcerated? Instead, the best solution (do to reasons in the previous round) would be to execute them.

Vortex-Blue123

Con

"...murder is the unlawful killing of a person. If they law sentences someone to death, it wouldn't be unlawful murder, but a lawful execution."

As truthful as this is how is it fair we are holding our government to different laws? Why is it fair to spread the message "You cannot kill unless you are an "important" person" important meaning you are on the government or a heightened place in authority as such? The government officials are only going to be trialled toward the death penalty if the killing was not in the name of "justice".
"...The concept of justice is based on numerous fields, and many differing viewpoints and perspectives including the concepts of moral correctness based on law, equity, ethics, rationality, religion, and fairness...." http://en.wikipedia.org...
How is bringing one's demise morally fair or ethical? How is it promoting equality if the government are allowed to kill?

"...Christianity has been the cause of many terrible stuff happening, such as the Salem Witch Trials and The Spanish Inquisition, just to name a few..." In this statement has is the key word. Times have changed. We are human, religious or not. We make mistakes, we correct ourselves, we move on aspiring and striving for better. The death penalty is not bringing us anything but more hate and anger.

"If we adopted this maxim, where would it end? "You kill my son; I kill yours." "You rape my daughter; I rape yours." "You mutilate my body; I mutilate yours." And we would pursue this course, despite the lack of any reason to believe it will protect us even if it is clear that occasionally the victim of our official barbarism will be innocent." States Cuomo [ http://www.nydailynews.com... ]
Debate Round No. 3
Pase66

Pro

Con's Round 3 Rebuttal
1.) We are not holding the government to different laws. They wouldn't be committing murder, but would be serving justice in the form of a final punishment.

2.) The death penalty is fair, but should be used for the most horrendous of people, people who have taken away the human rights of others.

3.) In your final paragraph, where you speak of killing another's son and raping another daughter, this is far from the point I was trying to make. You see, if someone kills your son, they forfeit their right to life, not their son. So, it would be fair to kill them, and not their son. You see, this is justice, as it is fair. If one takes another's life, their life must also be taken, as it is equal punishment for the crime.
Vortex-Blue123

Con

Vortex-Blue123 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
Pase66

Pro

Closing Statements
My closing statements will be short, as I feel I have covered almost everything, as well as Con forfeiting the last round. I hope to have been able to have shown why the death penalty should not be abolished, as well as provide reasons of why it should be allowed (to take away someone else's human rights is to forfeit your own). Con's entire case relied on one reason, and that reason was the death penalty being immoral. Con used that argument, but barely used any reasoning to show how it is immoral. Con also didn't rebut many of my arguments, as is apparent in the previous rounds. Again, I hope to have shown that the death penalty should not be abolished.

I would like to thank Con for partaking in this debate with me, and the voters and readers for also taking part in this fascinating debate.
Vortex-Blue123

Con

- By rules I must forfeit this round -

I thank pro for this debate and have enjoyed it. I apologise for missing the last round due to internet troubles and exams. Once again I thank pro for this debate and wish them luck in their future endeavours
Debate Round No. 5
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by Vortex-Blue123 1 year ago
Vortex-Blue123
I apologise for forfeiting the last round but I was having some internet troubles :/
Posted by AOP 1 year ago
AOP
Sorry I didn't mean to post it twice, just added a third point.
Posted by AOP 1 year ago
AOP
1) Lots of people have been "legally executed," and later found out to be innocent. That's unacceptable.

2) Life sentence is a worse punishment, and it gives time for more discovery.

3) The system is imperfect. There are a few things in life that are perfect, Life and Death being a few of them. They are absolute and just are what they are. Absolution is perfection. It is final. It is irreversible. An imperfect system has no place making absolutes.

I agree that it should be abolished on those two simple points alone, irregardless of morality factors. With Tsarnaev, what if he's being blackmailed? What if "they" send him to South America and give him a facelift like what happened with the head Nazis in the Vatican Ratline? None of the evidence adds up to me. There are too many variables and the approval rating of the Congress for example is at its lowest ever. Nobody trusts the government, but a life sentence might keep that check in balance because people can see that he hasn't been given any surgical procedures and he's right where he should be if he's guilty.
Posted by AOP 1 year ago
AOP
1) Lots of people have been "legally executed," and later found out to be innocent. That's unacceptable.

2) Life sentence is a worse punishment, and it gives time for more discovery.

I agree that it should be abolished on those two simple points alone, irregardless of morality factors. With Tsarnaev, what if he's being blackmailed? What if "they" send him to South America and give him a facelift like what happened with the head Nazis in the Vatican Ratline? None of the evidence adds up to me. There are too many variables and the approval rating of the Congress for example is at its lowest ever. Nobody trusts the government, but a life sentence might keep that check in balance because people can see that he hasn't been given any surgical procedures and he's right where he should be if he's guilty.
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