Saturday, April 13, 2019

Thiel College: Death Penalty

What is your opinion of the death penalty? Is it cruel and unusual punishment or an appropriate punishment under the law?


Kierstin said...

Before I took this class, I was an advocate for the death penalty. I believed that if someone was capable of murdering another human-being then they deserved the same punishment in return. However, Professor Mangino mentioned something in class last week that changed my view on the death penalty. He said that there is always a chance that an innocent person is convicted and given the death penalty. However, the law is not always 100% correct on convictions yet we have a punishment that is 100% final and can never be overturned. This made me rethink the death penalty. I do not see the death penalty as a violation of the Eighth Amendment protection of cruel and unusual punishment. However, I do wonder now how many innocent people we have killed? Also, I believe making someone wait on death row is cruel and unusual. I think that if we are going to continue with the death penalty, our system of doing so needs major revisions.

Tyla said...


I still do not have a one sided opinion on the death penalty. I believe that in some ways it can be justified. For example, serial killers, in my opinion should be sentenced to the death penalty. If someone is capable of constantly taking another individuals life over and over again, they shouldn't be able to live anymore. As Kierstin stated earlier, Professor Mangino made the point that there is a chance that we can sentence an innocent individuals to death. In the end, I believe we should still have the death penalty as an option because there are many people who shouldn't be able to live anymore because of the crimes they committed, but even with that we must insure we are sentencing the right people.

Elijah said...

Personally I am big advocate of the death penalty, I think it is a great deterrent for people even considering to commit a horrible crime like murder. It does seem fair that someone who has killed someone else receive the same fate they gave their victims. One of the biggest issues with the death penalty is the case where their might have been a mistake in trial and the accused is actually innocent. This is a very interesting circumstance where the defendant might often appeal this sentence or the case itself. Back in 2012 the average appeal process would take roughly 4-6 months, and when your on death row in can imagine that this might not seem like a lot of time but you would be surprised. In the US in 2010 the average time it took to carry out the death sentence was roughly 15 years. Obviously this calculation was done almost 10 years ago but in 2018 there were approximately 25 people killed under the death penalty and of those 25 people the shortest time for someone to be executed was 8 years. I believe that because of this the accused is given ample amount of time to properly prepare an appeal in this allotted time frame. Understanding that no system is perfect and there are instances where a innocent person could be executed under this system, but the chances of this happening are very small and as we advance as a society we are actively looking and making sure instances like this are lessened and corrected for the future.

Angela said...

I do not think that the death penalty is cruel and unusual punishment. I think that for certain crimes the death penalty is the most viable option. Certain crimes require a more severe punishment, such as the death penalty. As some of my classmates stated, it can be problematic as not all convictions are 100% correct. Therefore, there is a risk with continuing to practice this form of punishment. However, the death penalty is not always a very successful means of punishment depending on how it is measured. For example, the death penalty is not a very strong deterrent for crime. Individuals continue to commit these serious crimes, even though they are aware that the death penalty is a potential consequence. It is also not very cost effective. Our current form of administering the death penalty is highly expensive and a rather slow process. It is more expensive to have an inmate on death row, than in the general prison population. This, in turn, creates a higher overall cost for maintaining death row prisoners than others. For these reasons, I am not in support of the death penalty because I don't believe it to be efficient and cost effective. I don't, however, believe it to be cruel and unusual.

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