Capital Punishment Essay

1473 words - 6 pages

The United Nations General Assembly, right after the aftermath of World War II, endorsed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This declaration stated that all human beings were of equal rights irrelevant to race, sex and class. (Article 1-2) It also prohibited the use of torture and punishment and declared all to be equal under the law. (Article 5-6) The UN was aware that asking all countries to abolish the death penalty was a goal too high and so, “shifted its focus to limiting the scope of the death penalty to protect juveniles, pregnant women and the elderly.” (United Nations) Regardless, many European nations have stopped using the death penalty altogether. The US, although it did not abolish the death penalty, added certain limitations to its extent. A woman’s rapist that did not kill her would not be subjected to the death penalty as he did not take a human life. Kidnappers and accomplices to murder are also not applicable. The eighth amendment to the United States Constitution prohibits the imposition of cruel and unusual punishments and it may be argued that capital punishment is thus a direct violation of it. Abolitionists argue that death is an unusual punishment and that a person should not be killed as a punishment for their crimes. All in all, capital punishment is implemented in times of espionage, treason and murder.
Should the death penalty be prohibited or legalized? The truth is that some crimes are so inhumane and horrifying; the only action against such criminals would be the death penalty. Let us take Jeffrey Dahmer for example: serial killer, rapist, murderer, psychopath and cannibal. Just one word to describe a person on this list above is horrific; imagine all these words describing the same person. Jeffrey Dahmer killed 17 men, most of them black, “He was careful to select victims on the fringes of society, who were often itinerant or borderline criminal, making their disappearances less noticeable, and his likelihood of capture that much less. There have been claims that he was racially motivated, as most of his victims were African-American.” (Jeffrey Dahmer Biography) He would frequently go to gay bars and proposition men to come back to his place and pose for photos. After he succeeded in luring them there, he would go on to kill them, have sex with them after they were dead and then butcher their bodies. Dahmer would take pictures of each step of this bloody process and later view these pictures for pleasure. He devised several techniques with chemicals and acids to reduce the flesh and bone to a black, evil smelling sludge which could be disposed of by pouring it down the drain. Dahmer would preserve the head and genitals as trophies, with the head being boiled in hot water to remove the flesh and the genitals preserved in formaldehyde. The sick thing was he was got sexually aroused by his victims after they were dead, not before. Dahmer even went as far as to eat his victims as to feel them inside him! He...

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