Death Penalty

In our society, we have an inhumane history where death penalties were legal.  The death penalty originated in 1608 in the USA.
In North America there has been 3,320 convicted murderers on Death Row as of January 1, 2005. There are 32 states within the USA that still allow the death penalty. Just 21 countries in the world carried out the death penalty last year. The main points that will be brought are the history of the death penalty, Case of Lena Baker and the money spent on death penalty. Throughout history many people have been executed by government and police officials and later been found innocent.

Imprisonment is the appropriate punishment for murder. Every execution risks killing an innocent person.  The methods they used for death penalty were hanging, lethal injection, electrocution, gas chamber and firing squad. Since the reinstatement of the modern death penalty, 87 people have been freed from death row because they were later proven innocent. That is a demonstrated error rate of 1 innocent person for every 7 persons executed. The death penalty took away an innocent life like Lena Baker.

Lena Baker was a forty-four old woman who shot Ernest B. Knight. Little did people know that Knight was sexually abusing her and was keeping her in his gristmill for several days at a time. Lena Baker was finally fed up and when Knight came back to sexually abuses her, she stole his pistol and shot him. Lena Baker was sent to the court where she was facing a white male judge and a male jury. Odds weren’t in her favor. Lena Baker lost and was sent to death.  On March 5, 1945 Lena Baker was killed. Her last words were “ “What I done, I did in self-defense, or I would have been killed myself … I am ready to meet my God.” Lena was an innocent woman who died for self-defense. This is just one of many cases who was executed but were later found innocent.

Death penalty cases are much more expensive than other criminal cases and cost more than imprisonment for life with no possibility of parole. They have found out that it is cheaper to keep death row inmates in prison for life than to execute them. In financially strapped California, one report estimated that the state could save $90 million each year by abolishing capital punishment. Florida spent an estimated $57 million on the death penalty to achieve 18 executions. The money spent on death comes from our own pockets.

The history of the death penalty, Case of Lena Baker and the money spent on death penalty. Imprisonment for inmates are the appropriate punishment, it could help save an innocent life.  Lena Baker was a woman who died from an unfair trail and was executed. Death penalty trials cost an average of 48% more than the average cost of trials in which prosecutors seek life imprisonment.  The death penalty is disgusting punishment in human history.

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One response »

  1. Hey bud,
    This reads like a very opinion based essay. Remember your job is just to weigh in on both sides and EXPLAIN. Adjust accordingly and I will remark. Also, you have a few formatting issues. Your second sentence shouldn’t start on its own line.

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