Thousands will die. They are victims of senseless murder, but should the
murderous felons die as well? Capital Punishment is a major controversy. Debating
whether they receive execution or spend the rest of their ruined lives rotting in a jail cell
seems pointless. The government throws away these humans lives. We control the lives
of these criminals and we should not waste them.
We should use the thousands of them to
better our society. Rather than capital punishment, the government should create work
teams using death row criminals to better our communities. The death penalty has been debated since the beginning of humankind. Today a
total of 94 countries and territories use the death penalty for ordinary crime, including the
In the other 57 countries in the world, the death penalty no longer exists. In
some of the 57 countries, capital punishment is only banned for ordinary crimes and still
effective for military crimes or crimes committed in exceptional circumstances such as
Currently 34 of the states in the U.S. exercise capital punishment. The most recent to
abolish capital punishment was Massachusetts, in 1984, and New York, in 1995, was the
most recent to reinstate it, according to the NAACP.
During 1977 and 1994, Texas
executed the highest number of prisoners, a total of 85. As of 1996 there were 3,122
inmates on death row. These convicts could help with government labor with a hope that
they might be free someday. Figures show that, with men, 80% decide in favor of the
death penalty, and women the vote was 74%..
White populations vote 81% for capital
punishment and blacks only 53% (Doan, 2). This information means that the general
public will resolve to end the lives of these killers. By offering an alternative, these
figures may alter themselves significantly.Those opposing the death penalty would obtain some level of satisfaction with a
work program for death row inmates.
More often than not, families of murder victims do
not experience the relief they expected to feel at the execution, says Lula Redmond, a
Florida therapist. ( Brownlee 28). The United States is the execution capital of the
world. Now isnt that something to be proud of? Katie Kondrat asks sarcastically in
The Death Penalty a Just Punishment?. A killer who is killed can not kill again, but a
killer in jail until he dies also cant kill. The well known argument against capital
punishment remains as the morality issue.
Some say killing the murderer will not bring
the victim back to life. The U.S. needs a plan that will not execute but use the remaining
The common argument for capital punishment is that it saves tax dollars, it
decreases prison overcrowding and provides equal justice. With the proposed plan, the
government would save millions on not having to hire road crews and other manual labor
The monies generated by the work provided should solve the prison crowding
issue by freeing up more funds to build and staff bigger prisons. Without severe
punishment the justice system says that a murderers life is more important than the
victims. says Connie Sun in contrasting part of The Death Penalty a Just
Punishment?. A lifetime of service to the victim and his family may be viewed as equal
What the Bible has to say about capital punishment affects peoples view on it.
The whole issue seems to stem from ideas of morality. Men presume to claim things that
are Gods alone. They even want to decide over the life and death of people and nations,
says Eberhard Arnold. They forget that it is the Lord who kills and makes alive. (
Bruderhof 2). The New Testament is based on forgiveness.
Father forgive them; for they
know not what they do, states Luke 23:34 of the New Testament. The Bible also
contains the Ten Commandments, one of which states , Thou shalt not kill. From a
Biblical standpoint, capital punishment remains unacceptable to its followers. This is a
strong argument for constructively using the life of one who has killed by not repeating
the same act twice. It contains an element of forgiveness while still making the offender
confess to the misery he has caused others.
We should make use of the murderers on death row. Punishment should not come
as three minutes of minimal physical and mental pain as in execution. These killers
should have to live with their guilt, and also do more than eat up money from the
government. The murderers would do such jobs as clear roadway paths and clean up
garbage. They would not be paid, they would be housed and fed in the jails, and work in
a organized chain gang. The usual prison guards will watch over the workers.
argument against this says that some criminals would commit suicide. This argument is
not logical since the workers would die anyway, either by execution or deteriorating in
jail. The criminals might refuse to work because they possess a death sentence in
execution, or life in jail. As enticement, the felons will receive parole after a minimum of
20 years of service and extensive rehabilitation depending on the severity of their crimes.
Allowing parole will encourage hard work and commitment.The process of training, organizing and disaplining these people will help the state
government to clean up roadways, dig sewer trenches, and make parks.
will work without pay and be kept in the prisons. The idea is beneficial to the people and
the budget because of the cheap manual labor. The government should apprentice death
row criminals rather than have them executed. Whether a man should die now or die later
should not be the focus of the capital punishment debate.
Working the death row
prisoners to better communities and providing them with counseling, food, and shelter is
a logical, and deserving alternative to capital punishment. Death row murderers owe the
United States citzens whose lives they have altered so permanently.
Brownlee, Shannon, et al. The place for Vengence. U.
S. News & World Report 16 June 1997: 24-32
Bruderhof Foundation. What Others Say About the Death Penalty. http://www.bruderhof.org/issues/deathpen/thoughts/quotes.
Doan, Brian. Death Penalty Policy, Statistics, and Public Opinion. Focus Spring 1997: 2
Kondrat, Katie. Death Penalty a Just Punishment? 8 March, 1996 http://www-scf.