A View of the Two Opposing Sides of the Death Penalty

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“For centuries the death penalty… has been trying to hold crime in check; yet crime persists.” – Albert Camus. The death penalty has been a hot topic for debate for as long as it has been around. Still, in this century, this method of punishment persists in the United States. Though there are many different ways that the death penalty is carried out (firing squad, lethal injection, etc.) the effect is the same. Though I believe strongly that the death penalty is wrong, I hope to use the pillow method to try to see the other side of the story and to try to understand the reasons why such an extreme method of punishment would be endorsed I’m Right, You’re Wrong. In my opinion, the death penalty is extremely contradictory, if not barbaric in nature. Though a person would have to commit several atrocious crimes to even be considered for the death penalty, it still is morally and ethically wrong. Is it just, is it fair that we punish death with more death, causing more grief and setting an example to the rest of our country? Who are we to say that death is a fitting, just punishment for those crimes? It is wrong to punish death with death.

All that does is create more havoc, more pain, more lost souls to wonder about. As humans, we cannot play God. We do not know all the extenuating circumstances or the mental condition of the person, and therefore we cannot take their life away. We would have to be omniscient and unbiased to truly understand what that person did and why. Because not one single human person is either of those things, it is wrong to use the death penalty. You’re Right, I’m Wrong. Though there are mounting moral and ethical reasons that provide evidence against the death penalty, the safety reasons are also valid. If a person has been convicted of several appalling crimes (i.e. murder), then there is a good chance that they would do it again. Even if the criminal was sentences to prison for life, there is still a minute possibility that they could escape and cause even more damage than they had already. People in consideration for the death penalty must be proven guilty with more than sufficient evidence and must be in a relatively mentally sound state of mind, ensuring in part that the death penalty is deserved. The death penalty has also been reported to give closure to the families of the murdered. They feel comforted knowing that justice has been given to the person who committed the crimes. The death penalty is not given lightly, and it is a very rare occurrence, only recommended for the most severe cases when the crimes seem to be bad enough to deserve death. Both Right, Both Wrong. Both views are valid arguments, and both are also flawed. Every situation is different, has different circumstances, and should receive different treatment. It is true that we cannot set criminals free, that something must be done. Whether that is life in prison or the death penalty, both, in their own ways, rob the person of life, which can always be debated as right or wrong. Murder is a serious crime, and humanity struggles with ways to deal with it.

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Everything seems too harsh, but at the same time nothing is harsh enough. It Isn’t Important Which Position is Right or wrong. Because both viewpoints can be seen as both right and wrong, it would seem that the issue is not important. Everything will be dealt with in the way that is deemed correct in its own time. The judge of the case ultimately has the final say, and there is nothing that either viewpoint can do after that point. Continuing to debate a scenario that very seldom occurs is somewhat silly. There is Truth in All Four Perspectives. All four viewpoints have good and bad aspects about them. Life is an important issue, and it is imperative to look at everything before making a decision. Jumping to conclusions or assuming things would be detrimental in a case such as this. It is not right to hold biased views when a life is on the line. Closed-minded stances can keep a person from making a good decision and can keep them from learning new things. Analysis and Discussion. It was interesting to contemplate all the other views besides my original one. I understand all of the other arguments and can see the flaws in my own viewpoint. I realize that the other view has just as many correct statements as I believe I do, and I feel like I can understand the people belonging to the opposite view better. Strong beliefs can create anger when they flare up against a person of an opposing belief, but using the pillow method can help keep our biases and emotions at bay.

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A View of the Two Opposing Sides of the Death Penalty. (2022, Jun 10). Retrieved from


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