Death Penalty and rationale used to justify it. Writing Assignment #1 – A two page analysis paper on the Death Penalty. You must read the entire History and Rationale for the Death Penalty at the bottom of this assignment before writing your paper. Your paper must be scholarly written and included the following;
Your first paragraph must briefly explain the three rationale for the Death Penalty.
Your second paragraph must, in detail, explain two reasons used to justify the continued use of the Death Penalty.
Your third paragraph must, in detail, explain two reasons used to justify abolition of the Death Penalty. (Abolition means to stop or terminate.)
Your fourth paragraph must, in detail, explain your personal opinion about the death penalty. (You must justify or support your position with facts, evidence or detailed rationale. Use information provided in the history I provided or you can do additional research on your own.)
Your fifth paragraph should be a well organized summary paragraph that briefly reviews the highlights of the first four paragraphs.
Death Penalty and rationale used to justify it
History and Rationale for the Death Penalty
The death penalty is a practice that was brought to America from England. Ironically, England has abolished the death penalty, which I will explain later. The death penalty in America has an interesting history. There have been three primary rationales for capital punishment; Deterrence, Retribution and Repentance.
“The Virginia Gazette observed that capital punishment was a way of ‘Counterbalancing Temptation by Terror'” Banner (2003). During the 18th century the hangings were public and covered in detail by the press. The Gazette went on to say that the executed criminal was “an Example and Warning, to prevent others from those Courses that lead to so fatal and ignominious a conclusion: – and thus those Men whose Lives are no longer of any Use in the World, are made of some Service to it by their Deaths” Banner (2003).
Retribution: “Punishment inflicted on someone as vengeance for a wrong or criminal act.” Retribution comes from the “Latin retributio(n-), from retribut- ‘assigned again.” Thus, it is the act of re-assigning the harm done, to the harm giver. Source:
Crime was seen as an evil caused by an individual’s intentional choice. “Failure to punish the crime would spread the criminals guilt to the entire community.” Banner (2003)
“Capital punishment was also understood in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries to facilitate the criminals repentance. It was of paramount importance that one should die in the proper frame of mind, because on that mental state depended, in large part, one’s eternal fate after death.” Banner (2003) The idea was that the impending execution would concentrate the mind, such that you would be brought to Christ and avoid eternal damnation.