The justification of capital punishment has been an on going debate for quite sometime. As in the case of any argument theirs two sides too each argument. In this particular argument “ society’s self defense” essay by Amber Young the opposed battle the idea of capital punishment and think that overall its unjust and falls under cruel and unusual punishment.
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Amber Young’s evaluations on the issue of capital punishment reaches out to everyone and leave a trembling thought in ones mind. The thought or picture left is the number of helpless innocent victims that were brutally killed by Ted Bundy. This picture alone lets one feel no pity or remorse for Ted bundy. This essay clearly refutes the opposed arguments and brings in evidence to support her reasoning. The majority of her arguments are strong though in some of her reason’s there could be a stronger persuasive voice in convincing the readers one way or the other.
In examining the death penalty, this particular argument is trying to justify the death penalty through the case of Ted Bundy; Young uses good evidence and support giving a particular example of what happened when the death penalty was not in order. Young claims that Bundy had escaped twice from prison. From Bundys escape he was able to rape and murder six innocent victims, not including the previous thirty-two victims. If Bundy was only sentenced to death at least six people’s lives could have been saved.(32-33) Young then furthers her reasoning showing the loop holes in the judicial system explaining that if he is not sentenced to death he still has the possible means of either escaping again, or even the possibilities of parole.
This appeals to the safety of our people and questions are true safety even if Bundy is behind bars. The objectors of the death penalty would claim that society is safe if one were behind bars, while young questions the real safety, showing that there are possibilities of an escape. Ultimately young does a good job in this case pushing the death penalty in assuring one hundred percent protection for the victims. Young believes one obtains protection by practicing the death penalty.
The argument continues and the objectors of the death penalty bring up the idea that the death penalty is to be considered to harsh of means of punishment, falling under the category of cruel and unusual Punishment.(33) Young does a good job of quickly refuting the claim, though fails to cover all angles of her reasoning. Her evidence in which she refutes deals primarily with the state of Florida and their particular means of their death penalty. In this case Florida uses lethal injection, a simple prick in the arm of a needle, a quick painless death. This hardly conjures up the idea of cruel and unusual. She then uses a good comparison with the explanation of people dying from cancer or other horrible painful diseases.(33) With these thoughts in our mind the needle prick in the arm sounds harmless. So far this is a good sound example though she fails to mention the other states whom do practice the death penalty, in which maybe aren’t as harmless as Florida’s law. Knowing first hand that every state has their own laws, some states don’t practice the lethal injection and the accused can face the electric chair or other means, which would be considered cruel and unusual punishment. Her evidence and claim now falls short and the objectors seem to be right in this particular situation. Young’s evidence and credibility would stay strong only if all states acted in the same way of Florida’s death penalty.
The next big question of the argument was that of the possibility of executing an innocent person. Young’s initial response was somewhat strong showing evidence on how the government tries individuals for crimes. Her supporting evidence explains how each person has individual rights guaranteed by the fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh amendment of the U. S Constitution.(33) Her strong claim that guilt must be proven beyond reasonable doubt, falls short when its clearly known that their has been a number of cases in which a person has been charged for a crime in which they have not committed. This quickly goes down hill when she exposes an example in which an innocent person, whom was committed guilty, truly was innocent. The question that arises is what about the people who were innocent and did not get the chance to be retried and were committed guilty, and possibly executed?
Theirs been multiple cases of this same occurrence. This shows a huge flaw in our judicial system, leaving the idea of guilt being proven be reasonable doubt questionable. To further this issue she weakly compares an innocently accused person s death with that of innocent people dying in car accidents.(34) In all respects this is a horrible comparison. Trying to compare the innocent deaths of a car accident and an innocent death of the wrongly accused. These two ideas are completely different and can not be compared in deciding whether we should or should not abolish the death penalty. Her example is not strong and is irrelevant in this case. Comparing an accidental death in a car accident to that of a predetermined death from the outcome of the jury hardly helps in her persuading the audience.
Young furthers her reasoning with evidence on two particular inmates. She uses letters that were written by Ted Bundy, explaining the horrible conditions of prison life, and an example of Gary Gilmore, whom preferred death, over life in prison.(35) In this case these two men clearly did not want to languish in prison and would much rather of died in ways of capital punishment. This is not a reason to keep the death penalty, simply because an inmate would choose to die than deal with the horrible condition of prison life. If anything this deters me from the death penalty simply because this is what the inmates choose. We can not give the inmates what they want, that would be catering to them. It’s my understanding that anyone who goes to jail deserves these horrible conditions and killing them would be a benefit to them. This claim too falls short in truly convincing the reader once again. After committing such horrible crimes these men should have no choice in deciding weather to live life in prison our quickly end their lives by means of the death penalty.
In the end Young’s essay starts out strong with the idea of the death penalty. In Bundys case evidence shows that the death penalty should be supported, though the further she gets into the situation, her evidence falls short in covering all angles leaving herself open to refutations. Her idea that capital punishment is societies means of self defense overall sounds good though her reasoning and evidence needs to be stronger. Everyone should be safe from harm and its understood, though the question still lingers, is the death penalty necessary?