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Capital punishment is a sign of deep sickness in our culture Our culture is addicted to violence and is desperately ill because of our decision not to abolish the death penalty The death penalty is unjust and it is wrong it is a cruel and unusual punishment it punishes the poor and it is unethical Capital punishment is a cruel and unusual way to punish those who have committed crimes We are all concerned about crime and would like the rate of crime to be reduced The death penalty however is not an effective way to deteriorate crime Studies show us that murder rates are lower in states that have abolished the death penalty In 1990 there was an average of 50 murders per 100000 population is states that had abolished the death penalty On the other hand the highest average of murders existed in states that had the death penalty Approximately 97 murders were committed per 100000 populations In opposition of the death penalty alternatives do indeed exist The simplest solution is to not to have the death penalty at all There are several states in the US that practice this alternative Another solution rests on the sentence of life without parole This in a basic sense is life imprisonment without a chance to ever walk free Some may think that life without parole is cruel but it leaves a criminal with his or her life The prisoner still has opportunities to make meaningful changes in his or her life to make contributions to society and to relate to his or her family Moreover if a person sentenced to life without parole is found to be innocent that person will be released With this in mind there is no way to give life back to someone who has been executed Capital punishment violates our rights stated in the eighth and fourteenth amendments The death penalty has been imposed for such insignificant crimes as rape
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