The Positive View on Capital Punishment

Samantha Pena Professor F. Lewis English April 8, 2011 The Positive View on Capital Punishment Capital punishment, also known as the “death penalty,” is the pre-meditated and planned taking of a human life by a government in response to a crime committed by that legally convicted person (Dictionary Reference). The essay “A Hanging”, by George Orwell, is a harsh wake up call as to how cold and blind the human race can be. Orwell demonstrates his feelings against capital punishment and how horrible it is to take someone’s life. In the article, “Death Penalty is a Deterrent”, by George E.Pataki, Governor of New York State, in 1997, he states his view on capital punishment and why he’s for it. Capital punishment should exist still in the world because some prisoners deserve to die. Orwell’s story takes place in Burma, India. Orwell is a warder for a prison in Burma and he tells about his experience as he prepares to witness an execution. They all gather around the prisoner, six warders, and walk him out of his cell and toward the gallows. The prisoner goes calmly but is very afraid; his life was coming to an end, and there is nothing he could do to change that.As the prisoner makes his way to the gallows, Orwell watches him as he walks and notices that as he comes upon a puddle, he steps aside to avoid getting his feet dirty, even though he is about to be put to death. Orwell notes, “It is curious, but till that moment I had never realized what it means to destroy a healthy, conscious man” (para. 8). Orwell realizes that the prisoner is a human being with feelings and thoughts, whose life is about to be cut short. There are some defendants who have committed the ultimate punishment in our society by committing murder with aggravating circumstances.Yes, life is sacred. It cheapens the life of an innocent murder victim to say that society has no right to keep the murderer from ever killing again. However, society has not only the right, but the duty to act in self-defense to protect the innocent. Pataki notes that by keeping the death penalty, it protects the residents of New York. Pataki writes, “We are creating a state where law-abiding citizens have unlimited freedom from crime, a state where all can raise a family and follow their dreams in neighborhoods, streets, and schools that are free from the scourge of crime and violence” (para. ). The governor is creating an atmosphere that’s safe for people, which is a good reason why some criminals deserve execution. Pataki’s other major reforms that protect the people, include “increasing the sentences for all violent criminals; eliminating parole eligibility for virtually all repeat violent offenders; barring murderers and sex offenders from participating in work release programs” (para. 8). People do say that the death penalty is the ultimate denial of human rights. It is the premeditated and cold-blooded killing of a human being by the state in the name of justice.It violates the right to life. It is the ultimate cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment. There can never be any justification for torture or for cruel treatment. However, is there any justification for a nineteen year old male to rape a seventeen month old child? There are so many people who do such horrible things and yet some believe it is still wrong for them to die. Some people understand why Orwell felt that capital punishment must go. Orwell writes, “When I saw the prisoner step aside to avoid the puddle, I saw mystery, the unspeakable wrongness, of cutting life short when it is in full tide” (para. ). In response to this, yes, the prisoner has feelings, concerns, and he’s a conscious man. However, he did not think about that before he committed the crime that led him to that jail. The question is do people deserve to live, if they did something so terrible as to take someone else’s life in a terrible way? Some people say it depends on the crime, but that is why the jury decides the sentence, and why the people have a chance to hear the trail, and decide for themselves whether or not a person should get life without parole.The death penalty was first instituted by God Himself in Genesis 9:6: “Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man. ” Man didn’t invent the death penalty, so man has no right to abandon it. We live in an age when everyone is far too concerned with “human rights,” and God has been practically ignored, god does have rights, and it is his right to do as he pleases with his own creation. Man is the highest form of life on this earth, created in God’s own image, and “crowned with glory and honor” (Psa. 8:5).God has given man the moral authority to execute those who choose to take the lives of others. In Exodus 21:12 the Bible says, “He that smiteth a man, so that he die, shall be surely put to death. ” If a person says, ” Well, that’s just the Old Testament law. The New Testament doesn’t support the death penalty. ” That isn’t entirely true based on Acts 25:11, Roman 13:1-4, and Revelation 13:10. In Acts 25:11 the Bible says, “If then I am in the wrong and have done anything that deserves death, I am not trying to escape dying, but if not one of their charges against me is true, no one can hand me over to them. In Roman 13:1-4 the Bible says, “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except by God’s appointment, and the authorities that exist have been instituted by God. So the person who resists such authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will incur judgment (for rulers cause no fear for good conduct but for bad). Do you desire not to fear authority? Do good and you will receive its commendation for it is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be in fear, for it does not bear the sword in vain.It is God’s servant to administer retribution on the wrongdoer. ” In Revelation 13:10 the Bible says “If anyone is meant for captivity, into captivity he will go. If anyone is to be killed by the sword, then by the sword he must be killed. ” God has never changed his law of Capital Punishment for murderers. A common argument is that statistics do not show that the death penalty deters crime when death penalty states are compared with non-death penalty states. The states that have the death penalty do not use it enough for statistics. Less than fifty executions out of eighteen thousand murders aren’t going to accomplish much.Orwell and Pataki present opposing views on capital punishment. The Americans resolve to end crime is only as strong as the laws that are passed to punish criminals. By keeping the death penalty a law, the people have demonstrated that resolve, therefore strengthening the promise that the children and future generations will grow up in a land that is free of violence. The death penalty is an aggressive and comprehensive plan to reclaim neighborhoods and give the people back their fundamental freedoms. The Americans need to do whatever is necessary to ensure that violence has deadly consequences.That is why the government must pass laws that give our people freedom to pursue their hopes and dreams without fear. That is why capital punishment should still exist.Works Cited “The Holy Bible”: Containing the Old and New Testaments: Commonly Known as the Authorized (King James) Version. Philadelphia: National Pub. , 1997. Print. Pataki, George E. “Death Penalty Is a Deterrent” Usa Today; Mar. 1997. Web. 07 Apr. 2011. Orwell, George. “A Hanging” George Orwell Complete Works, Biography, Quotes, Essay; Apr. 5, 2011. Web. 08 Apr. 2011.