Death Penalty Speech



Hi everyone, as my chosen topic, I am talking about the death penalty. I will go through the advocates arguments and the other side. First, some basic info and a brief history.

The death penalty, also known as capital punishment is defined as death by execution.

Crimes punishable by the death penalty include treason and murder, Etymologically, it comes via latin from the word ‘caput’ meaning head, which is where the concept of beheading probably came from.

It has existed since the beginning of civilisations and still exists now in 56 countries. It has been abolished by 106 countries but has been kept in 8 for ‘special crimes’ such as war crimes

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A medieval example of capital punishment is the widespread panic in north America and Europe regarding witches threating Christian. The salem witch trials, of which the play ‘the crucible’ is based on killed many accused witches.

A renaissance example would be henry the 8th, infamous for killing two of his wives and also sentencing a further 2000 to death. His daughter, Bloody Mary, also killed 300 protestants by burning them to the stake

. In the 18th century, there was no official police force in Britain and so this resulted in there being over 200 capital offences (crimes punishable by death.) One being chopping down a cherry tree. 

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Literary example would be Charles Dickens’ character ‘Fagin’ from Oliver Twist who was hung.  

A modern case would be in Nazi Germany, there was three types of capital punishment;  execution, shooting, and hanging.

Now, in the US there are five methods of execution: Hanging, electric chair, shooting, gas chamber, and lethal injection.

Now, I would like to talk through the arguments for the abolishment of the death penalty.

 “There is no justice in the name of killing in justice.” Desmond Tutu

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The execution of an innocent person is a wrong that can never be put right. Since the 1970s, 161 people have been exonerated from death rows around the US. In many of those cases, the exoneration came after a long legal battle and thanks to the extraordinary efforts of people working outside the system. Any one of the 156 death row exonorees could have just have easily been executed.

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Unfortunately, we do not know just how many innocent people have been executed in the United States. It’s hard to prove wrongful executions. Death penalty lawyers hardly have enough resources to work on the cases of live clients, much less for those who are no longer living. What’s more, once a person has been executed, the formal appeals process also ends.

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Perhaps another hole in the advocate’s argument is that its ‘cheaper.’ No, no it is not.  On average, the whole process costs 11 times more.

Death penalty trials are very expensive for many reasons. The lawyers who handle such cases are often more experienced and cost more money.

DNA testing also makes a death penalty case more expensive than a normal one. After that costs continue to rise. Inmates must be put into special buildings. More guards are needed.

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Deters crime?

Another key argument from the advocates side is that it deters crime. However, There’s no evidence that the death penalty deters murder any more than the threat of other harsh punishments such as life in prison. In fact, many criminologists believe that the death penalty makes us less safe, because it needlessly takes limited resources away from policies that have been proven to reduce crime.

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Deters crime? 2

If the death penalty actually deterred crime, then countries with the death penalty would be safer than those without. In fact, the opposite is true. Regions with the most executions also have the highest murder rates. What’s more, in amercia, states that have repealed the death penalty, there has been no subsequent spike in murder rates. In fact, the murder rate has fallen in New York, New Mexico, Illinois, and Connecticut in the years after they repealed the death penalty.

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Deters crime?

In 2012, the National Research Council reviewed all of the deterrence studies from all sides of the issue and found there was no credible evidence that the death penalty deters murder.

Whether you believe in an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth or that an eye for an eye makes the whole world blind I would like to open up to any questions. Thank you for listening.

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I will now talk through the advocates argument....

It is undeniable that those who are executed cannot commit further crimes.

Many people don't think that this is sufficient justification for taking human life, and argue that there are other ways to ensure the offenders do not re-offend, such as imprisonment for life without possibility of parole.

Although there have been cases of persons escaping from prison and killing again, these are extremely rare.

But some people don't believe that life imprisonment without parole protects society adequately. The offender may no longer be a danger to the public, but he remains a danger to prison staff and other inmates. Execution would remove that danger.

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The idea that they deserve it- a punishment is designed for the guilty and that capital punishment is the only punishment that brings jsutice.

In the early hours of Sunday 15th 1999 Virginia Candill anf her accomplice entered the home of an African-american woman called Lonetta White where they beat her to death and burgled her house. They then dumped her body in a desolate area in Kentucky. She was sentenced to death. Deserved it?

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Allen Lee Davis (July 20, 1944 – July 8, 1999) was an American mass murderer executed for the May 11, 1982, murderof Nancy Weiler, who was three months pregnant, in Jacksonville, Florida. According to reports, Nancy Weiler was "beaten almost beyond recognition" by Davis with a .357 Magnum, and hit over 25 times in the face and head.

He was also convicted of killing Nancy Weiler's two daughters, Kristina (age 10, shot twice in the face) and Katherine (age 5, shot as she was trying to run away and then skull beaten in with the gun). Davis was on parole for armed robbery at the time of the murders. He was executed on July 8, 1999.[1]

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