Is Capital Punishment Murder by The State – Sociology Essay
Throughout history people have been put to death for various forms of wrongdoing. Methods of execution have included such practices as crucifixion, stoning, drowning, burning at the stake, impaling, and beheading.
Today capital punishment is typically accomplished by lethal gas or injection or electrocution. The theory of punishment is to protect society against criminals, retribution that means paying for the crime you competed, deterrence which means stopping other people to offend the same crime or other crimes which I don’t think really works. Some people feel punishment reforms the criminals so they don’t offend again. I’m using Timothy McVey to decide whether capital punishment is morally wrong and never justified and acts as a deterrent.
Early on the morning of 19th April 1995 Timothy McVey detonated a bomb outside the federal building in Oklahoma city killing 168 people including 19 children. He didn’t have a bad upbringing just the divorce of his parents. After looking at newspaper articles the image of the firemen holding the dead baby was a big effect on Timothy McVeys trial, it disgusted the world. In the trial that was in 24th September 1997 he pleased not guilty. His plea hurt the victim’s parents. ‘During the trial I had locked eyes with him whilst he was pleading guilty this is which really hurt’. Timothy McVey said ‘given the chance he would kill my grandchildren again’. On Saturday 9th June the execution took place, witnesses were surrounded around television links. His last words were ‘sorry these people had to die’. He didn’t mean sorry they got killed but sorry they had to die. He had no sympathy. I think the execution was both justice and vengeance. This was justice because all the victims’ families saw him die this was a relief but they thought he was killed loss painlessly and faster then there poor family but it wasn’t humane as it was on video link to over 300 people.
Innocent people are sometimes arrested for crimes, which they haven’t committed when they are executed are they really innocent. Derek Bentley and Craig attempted to burgle from a factory, but Craig and Bentley were spotted climbing over the gate and by the time they had reached the roof, the police had arrived. Bentley was arrested, but Craig fired several shots fatally wounding a police officer PC Sidney Miles. On January 28th 1953 Bentley was 19 he was executed by hanging. His friend Chris Craig who fired the shots during the break in was too young to be hanged. At the time he was 16 years old. So Bentley was innocent but didn’t commit the crime he was executed for. I think Bentley should have been charged with burglary and Craig charged with the shooting. From the knowledge of the case study on Bentley I have realized capital punishment can take the lives of those who are innocent, As Bentley was killed because the act of his friend.
The video dead man walking shows evidence of how the execution cannot be humane. Matthew Poncelet wasn’t treated humanly through his execution as he was walking to the lethal infection in his slippers, as they didn’t let him wear his boots. He was handcuffed and had chains about his ankle restricting movement. The few hours he got in spend with his family weren’t quality time they couldn’t hold him, hug him or even kiss him goodbye. I think this is not humane his mother brought him up in the world and couldn’t even say goodbye.
When people say life it doesn’t mean life but really means 25 years. In 1966 Myra Hindley was found guilty of murder of Lesley Ann Downey and John Kilbndge. As the death penalty was abolished Myra Hindley was given a life sentence. In 1985 the sentence was extended to 30 years this was done without her knowledge and dies in November 2002, after serving 36 years in jail. Myra was the longest serving female prisoner in Britain. There were many reasons why people thought she should be released. Myra was a catholic so she went against the church murdering people. Myra admitted the guilt she has for her victims she was no longer a danger to society because maybe it reformed her so she wouldn’t reoffend. She was unfairly treated because she was female. But on the other hand there were reasons not for release. She only helped in search for Pauline Reide and Keith Bennett because she was hoping for parole. Parents of the victims put pressure on to keep her in prison. Society needed to respect the law. Her release would send out the wrong message. I think Myra Hindley shouldn’t have been released because the mother of Keith Bennett never saw him again after the murder she wouldn’t say good bye. The vindication so she has to respect that she did wrong and serve her time.
Life imprisonment must be worse than execution because before the death penalty got abolished people knew what would happen if you committed a crime. Execution is a quick death those who sentence others to death should carry out the execution themselves. But prisoners in jail often commit suicide because the depression so staying in prison.
I think the death penalty is right because they obliviously know what their doing when they murder people and put them through hell. But I don’t think it can be humane because it’s retribution like an ‘any eye for an eye’. People should pay for the crime they commit. It is used to protect society against criminals and acts as a deterrence which means it stops people committing the same crime when they find out how they suffered.