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Readers Respond: Why Should the U.S. Abolish the Death Penalty?

Responses: 123


It is genocide!

I understand that law breakers have to be punished, but to me it's genocide (the killing of your own people or a race of people)! Wake Up People! This needs to stop. If you kill someone, jail or death penalty is what you will get.
—Guest Myesha Snipe, A.S.T.

A weighted argument

It's hard for me to decide on this issue, but one thing stands out very clearly. 96% of victims of murder are innocent, and 96% of murderers put on death row are not innocent. The margin here speaks for itself. Murderers lose their rights when they violate human sancitity. They expect ideals and treatment to apply to them that they obviously have no faith in or concept of. Death penalty not a deterrent? Gee, since when was the near guarantee of death as an outcome for something not a deterrent for doing it? The answer is to expedite and improve efficiency of execution, and to continue improving methods of evidence gathering and prosecution to ensure guilt.
—Guest Bass player

Inhumanity? Please...

I proceed under the idea of "an eye for an eye". Like if someone went out and killed my girlfriend, the police better hope they get to the guy who did it before I do, because if they don't they won't ever find him.
—Guest Guest Chester

What would you do?

As the title says.. What would you do? Your 8 year old daughter goes off to school: she gets raped and killed. What would you do? I’m pretty sure if my daughter got killed by someone, they would deserve to be killed. No matter who it is, race, color, religion, status, whatever, you take a life, “an eye for a eye".. Let’s stop giving murderers second chances.
—Guest Soubasis

Yes, put them to death.

I absolutely believe that those who commit crimes such as murder and rape should be put to death. Why spend taxpayer money and leave them in prison? This is useless. They commited a serious crime so they should pay. With these kind of situations, you kind of have to think with your heart. If a member of your family was murdered, what would you want the local authorities or the government to do? I know that if it was my family memeber murdered or raped, I would want the guilty person to suffer and die. Fair is fair. They kill, why should they get to live? I know that people will argue well what if the person they think is guilty is really innocent? Well, with all the modern technology and the advanced DNA testing we have, the results are pretty acccurate. And yes, I'm sure that mistakes happen and innocent people are put to death. But they are such a minority, it almost never happens. Death penalty should be legalized in all states. And those who kill shall be put to death.
—Guest KC

If the death penalty worked?

There would not be murders filling up prisons begging for their lives in court. They have a right to be in prison? Their victims had a right to life liberty and the pursuit of happiness too, What about their rights. They had their right taken away by someone choosing to play God. Who heard their pleas for their rights? Their murders who played judge, jury, God and executioner.. To worry about the rights of murderers who felt it their right to murder is absurd. Death penalty doesnt work as a deterrent? Use it in a timely manner. What's to fear if you have years and years to live, buying time with appeals. Let ten guilty people go to save the life of one innocent person? What about the innocent people the ten guilty will murder after release? Seems like faulty math to me.

FRONTLINE - Death by fire

There's an excellent episode on FRONTLINE (PBS show) called "Death by Fire" - an innocent man executed in Texas not too long ago for being a "bad man". The arrogance of those who condemned him to death is atrocious and horrific. It will make you think twice about capital punishment.

Kill the Murderers

If someone kills someone, they're probably going to do it again. Anyone who believes someone saying they had a "religious experience" on death row is a complete idiot. People lie, especially criminals. None of the taxpayers money should be used on worthless trash like murderers. I say throw them in a room with 4 walls, a roof and no windows and let them die.
—Guest Guest Conservative

Death Penalty

We think that two wrongs don't make a right. In this case, two deaths don't solve anything.
—Guest zxWonderful Hazenxz

Christians can't support death penalty

The fact of the matter is Christianity and the Bible tell us that no man has the right to decide if another man should live or die. The only time a human being taking a life should be viewed as just by a society is if it is to directly save the life of someone else. JESUS CHRIST WAS KILLED THROUGH THE MEANS OF CAPITAL PUNISHMENT. Capital punishment goes against everything he stood for. Besides that, it would be better to teach future generations that no man has the right to decide if another man should live or die. Capital punishment devalues human life. One could argue that the very idea of a death penalty prepetuates violence and murder. So Republicans, stop calling yourself "Christians" and supporting the death penalty because you either know nothing about Christianity or you do not have a properly working conscience.
—Guest Guest Levi

it is inhumanity

First of all we are human being. We are also created by God. So, we have no the power to kill or permit to live. Only God has exclusive power over our life. I think it is mindless to return harm by harm.
—Guest melaku flatie

The only absolute way....

...to stop a person who kills is to kill them. There is NO other absolute way to prevent them from killing again.

Those who kill forfeit their rights....

People who choose to kill another person forfeit their rights as human beings. They should not enjoy the same rights, to life, liberty, or the pursuit of happiness, as any other law-abiding citizen in ANY civilized society. For those who state that a life sentence means that the incarcerated cannot kill, you forget that people who work in prisons, or by necessity, must interact with prisoners, are at risk, so that argument doesn't hold water (unless you don't believe that jail personnel are humans). There also have been a number of cases where the prisoner is the cause/mastermind/initiator of getting others to do killings on their behalf, from behind bars. With the advent of DNA science, and better police investigation techniques, there are more credible prosecutions and more solid convictions. Do we want to try and ensure a more bullet-proof system, with additional rules in place, to prevent innocent people from being executed? By all means; I believe we are far closer to that goal.


I hear that 4% of those convicted are innocent. The innocent ones that I care about are the victims. Not the innocent man in the wrong place at the wrong time. I care about this one: a man convicted of murder and sentenced to life. He was released for good behavior. Within months he abducted, raped and killed an 8 yr old girl. I think that answers the queston about rehabilitation and deterrant. If he were dead, that 8 year old would be alive today. She's the one I care about.
—Guest wondering

Vast majority fallacy

"The vast majority of the world community" have abolished the death penalty. The vast majority of the world community deny the rights of women. Sorry pal but the "vast majority" argument is a fallacy. It appeals solely to the conformist in us all.
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