The Outspoken Oppa

Fighting for a Unified Nation

Death Penalty

Remember, let’s be polite; let’s be respectful, but most of all, let’s be outspoken.

It is imperative that the common citizen focuses on the means the government uses to protect and secure the American people. From a legal and moral perspective, there are qualms and dilemmas that need to be addressed when arguing such a controversial topic. The first being the legality of the issue. The opposition believes the death penalty is unconstitutional because it is in violation of no cruel or unusual punishments provided by the 8th amendment. However, in the 1976 Supreme Court case, Gregg V. Georgia ruled the death penalty is constitutional is small cases. Later the Supreme Court barred the mentally ill and juveniles from reviving the death penalty.

However, incidents of innocent people executed raise moral questions. According to a team of legal experts and statisticians from Michigan and Pennsylvania, approximately 4.1 percent of all executions since 1973 were proven innocent. As of 2019, because of leading DNA technology, 200 executed people were proven innocent. The majority of experts concluded this figure could be higher if DNA technology is more accessible to court cases. One innocent person killed on death row is a tragedy everyone should strive to avoid.

The only time the death penalty is permissible is when the criminal poses a large threat to the safety of America. To take an extreme example, I would argue sentencing Adolf Hitler at the Nuremberg trials to death would be appropriate because he threatened global and national security. However, because of this rarity, the death penalty should be limited to only a select few crimes. There also needs to be criminal justice reform to combat misconduct. This includes anti-corruption bills, tighter vetting procedures, and extensive federal court reviews.

Remember, let’s be polite; let’s be respectful, but most of all, let’s be outspoken.

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