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Word Count: 718
An issue that has continually created tension in todays society is whether the death penalty serves as a justified and valid form of punishment The rapid increase in the national crime rate over the twentieth century has brought about endless debate on this topic According to a 1985 study by David Woehr a murder takes place every twenty-three minutes a rape every six minutes a robbery every fifty-five seconds and a motor vehicle theft every twenty-nine seconds Crime is an evident part of society and everyone is aware that something must be done about it Most people know the threat of crime to their lives but the question lies in the methods and action in which it should be dealt with Discussions over the death penalty have often been passionate and heated and advocates of both sides claim to hold the ultimate truth Yet capital punishment has proved to serve its purpose effectively and is indeed a valid form of punishment Those who advocate the abolition of capital punishment have supported their cause with many arguments They have claimed that some have been wrongly sent to death row while other decisions have been unfairly applied to minorities and the poor Others argued for the sanctity of human life as well as the expense involved in capital punishment But those who believe in the opposition of the death penalty are often misled They should consider the following cases that underlie the support for capital punishment for it is certainly the only way to deal with the cruelty of crime that has infected our society Capital punishment was once supported by the theory of deterrence yet studies have shown weaknesses in this argument Although the death penalty may not have an effect in deterring crime it protects society from the threat of the same criminal committing a violation again when they are set free A notable example is the case of Ali Agca
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