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Although many people believe that the death penalty is needed to deter crimes supply retribution for murderers and bring satisfaction to the victims families administering death is immoral costly a violation of the eighth and fourteenth amendments and has room for error An evil act like murder is not redeemed by another evil act of retaliation execution in this case Also on average 4 innocent people each year are sent to death row and the cost of every execution is 32 million dollars McAdams 2002 Supporters of the death penalty claim that the threat of executions prevents capital crimes more effectively than the threat of life imprisonment even though it is shown that states with the death penalty do not have lower rates of criminal homicides than states without the death penalty This claim seems valid but there are a few reasons why the death penalty fails as a deterrent for capital crimes First only a small proportion of first- degree murders are sentenced to death and even fewer are executed Second murders are either premeditated or not In the cases where a crime is premeditated the criminal usually concentrates on escaping arrest The threat of execution is not going to prevent these murderers from killing because they think they are too clever to get caught In non- premeditated murders the crimes are committed during impulsive moments of great emotional stress or under the influence of drugs or alcohol In this moment of passion the criminal is obviously not thinking about the consequences of his actions Furthermore if severe punishments like the death penalty were able to deter a crime than the threat of life imprisonment would cause any rational person not to commit these crimes Bedau 1992 There have also been many cases where the death penalty actually incited the capital crimes This happens when persons have a suicide-by-execution syndrome meaning that they are afraid to take their own lives so they commit
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