College Essay on Capital Punishmentsample Essay
Capital punishment, often called the death penalty, is a very controversial topic in the United States today. People are put to death for crimes, usually murder, in this country, which in some cases is un-just. In these cases innocent Americans and juveniles have been tried and put to death. Between the years 1976 and 2005, over 70 countries have abolished the death penalty. These countries include: Portugal, Norway, Brazil, Australia, Germany, New Zealand, Ireland, Switzerland, Spain, South Africa, Canada, The United Kingdom, and Mexico, as well as many others.
Before 2004, Turkey applied for admission into the European Union, the committee for the European Union gave a recommendation against acceptance. One of the reasons being “Turkey retains the barbaric practice of capital punishment. ” Not very long ago the European Parliament passed a resolution recommending and urging the United States to abandon the death penalty. According to an international magazine “Throughout Europe in particular, the death penalty is thought of as simply uncivilized” In some cases, people who have been sentenced to death had not even commited the crime.
They were innocent! Imagine being sentenced to such an irreversible punishment for a crime that was committed by another person. Anthony Potter was sentenced to death in the state of Illinois, in December of 1998. Two days before he was going to be executed, information came out that he was innocent. He was freed.
This true story begs the question: What would have happened if this information had come out two days later?An innocent man would have died. Another question that comes to mind is: How many times has the information been too late? Another illustration is the story of a young man in Texas. Ruben Cantu was convicted of murder and robbery at the age of seventeen. He was sentenced to the death penalty, all the while claiming that he was innocent. The case was based mostly on one eye- witness; an illegal immigrant at the time who was injured during the robbery.
After the Ruben Cantu was put to death, the eye- witness came out to say that he was sure that Cantu was not the murderer. He said he felt pressure from the police to identify the boy as the killer. Cantu’s co- defendant went a very long time without saying anything, when he finally spoke he said that he was the killer and that Cantu really was not with him the night of the crime. Ruben Cantu was an innocent man, and he was executed. A very young man, with no prior offences was put to death for a crime he did not commit.If he had been given any other sentence, he would be a free man.
I think, most of the time, after a person is executed, the case is closed, states do not want to pay the money to do more research and run more test to prove a dead man innocent. They don’t want to pay money to prove that they made a major mistake. So how many innocent people have been put to deaths, that were innocent and just given up on because of such an irreversible punishment? Remember, violence breeds violence.