Lethal Injection: Retribution for Families One of the most intense and detailed analyses proved that slightly more than four in 10 offenders return to prison within three years. Nearly half of every single criminal that has ever gone to jail has returned to jail for a second time. That means that the current correctional officers and our jailing system are failing to implant into the minds of criminals that what they are doing is not acceptable in society. These men were placed in jail for committing crimes such as armed robbery, burglary, assault, rape, aggravated assault, attempted murder, and murder.
Should attempted murderers be allowed to return to the streets to finish their job? Should convicted murderers not face the same consequences as their victims? Capital Punishment through lethal injection is the most efficient and least painful method of ending a criminal’s life. There are no other cost efficient and humane alternatives to the severest type of punishment dealt by the judicial branch of our government.
Lethal Injection is a necessity to society because it provides motivation or demotivation so to speak for those who consider breaking laws or even harming other human beings.
Lethal Injections should be legalized and accepted in all fifty states because it provides retribution for the loved ones of victims, it is the most efficient and pain-free form of the death penalty and it is entirely constitutional. Capital punishment is controversial because of the constitutionality and the inability to correct any errors, but the positives lambaste the negatives. Some people bring up the argument that some people are wrongly convicted of crimes they did not commit.
These people would be sentenced to death and killed as innocent people. Every form of punishment has certain flaws or objections. The only problem is that with capital punishment there is no way of correcting any mistakes that are made by jurors or judges. Any mistakes in this process do not only inconvenience someone; it costs that person their life. They don’t face the consequences of a jury’s mistake, but the victim’s family and friends have to live with someone else’s mistake for the rest of their lives.
Another more pressing argument for their case is that despite the evolution in the manner convicted criminal offenders are being executed and the use of modern medical methods of execution, there are still those who oppose lethal injection and argue that it can cause unnecessary pain and suffering. Specifically, lawyers for the accused in Kentucky challenged the use of three-drug combination arguing that lethal injections violate the Eighth Amendment prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment.
The opponents of lethal injection who are anesthesiologists and end-of-life doctors argue that if a person is not properly anesthetized the paralyzing drug which is the second drug injected will prevent the inmate from being able to indicate any pain or distress. The third drug will make matters worse for the inmate as he will only feel as if he is slowly being suffocated. This experience will be excruciatingly painful for him and he will most likely feel burning sensation in his veins (Bronner).
Clarence Ray Allen was the last man to be put to death in California before a moratorium on executions in the state was issued in 2006. His first murder conviction came in 1977 for arranging the 1974 killing of a potential witness against him in a burglary. Allen was sentenced to life in prison. Then, in 1980, while behind bars, Allen arranged the killings of witnesses who had testified against him in his murder trial. He was finally sentenced to death, but even then it wasn’t until 26 years after the killing that he was finally executed. During all that time, the loved ones of the deceased had no closure.
Retribution is not only a need of society; it is a right of those victimized (Ardaiz). Another just as severe case where the death penalty should have been applied but Arizona failed to do so was in the case of Jared Loughner. He was the gunman who shot and killed six people and wounded 13 others, including then U. S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords. After showing up at a constituent meeting outside a grocery store in Tucson, Arizona, nearly two years ago, Loughner killed or wounded 19 people. Assuming he survives until age 65, that adds up to a mere two years for each victim.
A man who impacted and took over a dozen lives will not be suffering the same fate as his victims because of the inability of certain judicial systems to pass the death sentence. This man should suffer a death equal in malicious caliber of the deaths that he forced upon his victims; instead he is living and breathing in a jail in Arizona. With the establishment of Capital Punishment in every state, as a nation, we would be ensuring that people as evil and spiteful as Jared will never take another look at another person, let alone be able to harm that person.
Although common conception is that the death penalty is so barbaric and inhumane that it should never be practiced, the actual practicing of lethal injection is very humane and borderline too nice to the convicted criminal. The fact of the matter is that anyone who is sentenced to death by lethal injection is injected with three chemical solutions. The first is sodium thiopental which very rapidly puts someone to sleep or knocks them out. The second injection is a saline solution which is responsible for completely numbing every single nerve ending in the body within a matter of seconds.
Neither of the two initial injections harms the recipient they are entirely pain-free and are actually responsible for keeping this punishment out of the category of cruel and unusual. The final injection, which is administered after the recipient is both unconscious and incapable of feeling pain, is potassium chloride. Potassium chloride is the actual lethal injection that ends the person’s life by stopping the heart within seconds of entering the body. The precision and thought that is put into every single lethal injection or process of capital punishment is immense (Key Events).
The argument of barbarism is completely negated by all of these steps because the criminal sentenced to this punishment never feels a thing. In order to ensure that every criminal who is injected with the lethal concoction is given the correct and “fair” administering of the drug, there are two safeguards in effect. One of the safeguards is that the members of the team who will administer the three-drug combination are required to have at least one year of professional experience. Also, they must be licensed medical professionals and must participate in at least 10 practice sessions per year.
An additional safeguard is the presence of the warden and deputy warden in the execution chamber who are tasked to closely monitor and watch for problems in the execution. (Death Penalty Follow Up). The argument that lethal injections violate the Eighth Amendment has already been settled by the Supreme Court in the case of Baze v. Rees (2008). In ruling that lethal injections do not violate the prohibition on cruel and unusual punishments, the Supreme Court made the following declarations. The case of Gregg v. Georgia (1976) has declared that capital punishment is constitutional.
This only means that the constitution accepts the fact that pain cannot be absolutely avoided in capital punishments. No matter how humane the method is, it must follow that there will always be pain associated with capital punishment. Thus the Eighth Amendment does not demand the avoidance of all risk of pain in executions. Although it may be true that there is a significant risk that the procedures in lethal injections may not be properly followed, it does not mean that the punishment violates the Eighth Amendment.
While it may be true that there are other safer and less painful alternatives to lethal injection, as claimed by the opponents of lethal injection, it also does not mean that lethal injections violate the Eighth Amendment. Just because there are other means of punishing a person does not make this means of punishment unconstitutional. Lethal injections do not violate the Eighth Amendment because 36 states utilize the three-drug combination in their executions. Not one of the states presently use the one-drug alternative being proposed by the opponents of lethal injection.
Also, the so called risk of the improper administration of the drug involved does not prove that lethal injections violate the Eighth Amendment because every state has to provide for safeguards to ensure that an adequate dose of drugs is administered to the convicted offender. Even those who impose on others’ rights to pursue happiness are guaranteed the right to a humane and nearly painless death. Lethal Injection is not only humane it is somewhat overly generous to those who were ruthless and inhumane to others (Death Penalty).
Therefore any argument that Capital Punishment through lethal injection should be illegal is quickly rebutted by the alarming amount of positives that come for the victims and their loved ones. Lethal Injection allows for retribution for victims and their families, it is nearly pain free and extremely humane, and it is entirely constitutional. In the case of Clarence Ray Allen not even imprisonment was enough to keep people safe from an extremely dangerous man. Lethal Injection is a necessity for the greater good and it must be legal in order to be practiced.
The legality of Capital Punishment is a necessity for the well-being of the nation. Ardaiz, James A. “Retribution Is Not Only a Need of Society; It Is a Right to Those… ” Los Angeles Times. 28 Oct 2012: A. 35. SIRS Issues Researcher. Web. 19 Feb 2013. •Clarence Ray Allen was the last man to be put to death in California before a moratorium on executions in the state was issued in 2006. •His first murder conviction came in 1977 for arranging the 1974 killing of a potential witness against him in a burglary. I was the prosecutor on that case. •Allen was sentenced to life in prison. Then, in 1980, while behind bars, Allen arranged the killings of witnesses who had testified against him in his murder trial. •He was finally sentenced to death, but even then it wasn’t until 26 years after the killing that he was finally executed. •During all that time, the loved ones of the deceased had no closure. Retribution is not only a need of society; it is a right of those victimized. •In one of the most comprehensive reports of its kind, the Pew Center on the States found that slightly more than four in 10 offenders return to prison within three yea Bronner, Ethan. Use of Death Sentences Continues to Fall in U. S. ” New York Times. 21 Dec 2012: A. 24. SIRS Issues Researcher. Web. 19 Feb 2013. •”Thirty-six years after the Supreme Court reinstated the death penalty, its use is waning, with prosecutors and juries preferring to sentence convicted murderers to life in prison without parole. •Three-quarters of the 43 people put to death in 2012 were in four states: Arizona, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Texas.
•Another major reason for the decline is that the death penalty involves enormous expense and numerous appeals; some prosecutors say they prefer life imprisonment. (New York Times) •”If you get someone into jail, the likelihood of his committing murder will at least be lower,” Professor Liebman said. “In addition, most people on death row are never going to get executed. Death row incarceration is more expensive. It requires single cells because the inmates are considered more dangerous and more desperate. ” •Mr. Dieter added: “Juries know that mistakes have been made and have lingering doubts about absolute guilt. Life without parole gives them an alternative. ” Death Penalty Follow-up: Supreme Court Upholds Lethal Injection Method, Bars Death Penalty for Child Rape. ” Issues & Controversies On File: n. pag. Issues & Controversies. Facts On File News Services, 25 June 2008. Web. 15 Feb. 2013. ITS CONSTITUTIONAL!! •The Supreme Court’s 2007–2008 session produced two important rulings regarding the way the death penalty is applied in the U. S. •The high court April 16, 2008, ruled, 7–2, that the lethal injection method Kentucky used to execute death-row prisoners did not violate the Eighth Amendment’s guarantee against “cruel and unusual punishment. •Kentucky’s method was similar to the one employed by the federal government and 34 other states.
•A de facto moratorium on the death penalty had been in place since September 2007, when the court accepted the case, Baze v. Rees, and several states resumed executions in the months that followed the ruling. •Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. , writing the court’s opinion, said, “Some risk of pain is inherent in any method of execution–no matter how humane–if only from the prospect of error in following the required procedure. The Constitution does not demand the avoidance of all risk of pain in carrying out executions. ” “Key Events in the History of the Death Penalty (sidebar). ” Issues & Controversies On File: n. pag. Issues & Controversies. Facts On File News Services, 4 Aug. 2006. Web. 15 Feb. 2013. •Roberts wrote that Eighth Amendment challenges to an execution method had to prove that the method posed a “demonstrated risk of severe pain. ” •Roberts said challengers had to show that there were “feasible” alternatives that would “significantly” reduce that risk, and could be “readily implemented. •Roberts ruled that the plaintiffs in the case, death-row inmates Ralph Baze and Thomas Bowling, had not met those requirements •Kids and Mentally Disabled can not be killed because that would be cruel and unusual. “Public Support for the Death Penalty Remains Strong (sidebar). ” Issues & Controversies On File: n. pag. Issues & Controversies. Facts On File News Services, 29 Dec. 1995. Web. 15 Feb. 2013.
•Public support for capital punishment has risen slowly but steadily since the early 1970s, when the Supreme Court first began hearing cases concerning its constitutionality. In 1971, 49% of Americans said that they favored the death penalty for convicted murderers, while 40% said that they opposed the practice. •By 1981, two-thirds of Americans said they supported capital punishment, and by May 1995, 77% expressed support. Meanwhile, opposition dwindled to 13% in 1995, from 25% in 1981. •Despite their strong support for capital punishment, Americans do believe that innocent people have been sent to death row. •Eighty-two percent say they think an innocent person has been sentenced to death row sometime in the past 20 years; 14% do not. 57% say they would support the death penalty even if mistakes occur and one out of 100 people sentenced to death were actually innocent. •Other Side: Some people note that supporters of capital punishment are often reluctant to impose the death penalty in actual cases when they, as jurors, confront the person whose life is in their hands. •A July 1995 Newsweek poll, taken the week after Smith’s verdict was announced, shows that 38% of Americans would oppose the sentence of death if the convicted murderer was severely abused as a child.
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