American Stevenson Capital Punishment Analysis

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Even before Bryan Stevenson started representing people on death row, he was opposed to capital punishment. To him, the act of killing someone who is found guilty of murder only to demonstrate that killing is wrong, does not make logical sense. He believes that the death penalty is a punishment rooted in hopelessness and anger. It’s because of his moral and religious background that he believes no one is just a crime, we are more than the worst thing we’ve ever done. According to Stevenson, capital punishment in America is a lottery. It is interesting to me that Stevenson states that capital punishment is shaped by the constraints of poverty, race, geography, and local politics. It seems as if these constraints are the very reason America debates the death penalty today. Stevenson also states that the death penalty in the United States has increasingly comes to symbolize a disturbing tolerance for error and injustice. …show more content…

Stevenson’s ability to incorporate cases to support his claims allowed for his essay to feel real as well as personal. He began with the case of Walter McMillian, which I found to be interesting due to how unconstitutional both the investigation and trial had become. According to Stevenson, Walter McMillian’s case illustrated how the actions of the police, prosecutor, the bench, and a jury selected in a racially discriminatory manner can produce a capital murder conviction and sentence of death for a person who was innocent. In the end, McMillian was convicted of capital murder based solely on the testimony of Ralph Myers, a felon with a lengthy criminal record. After several evidentiary hearings and four years of litigation, the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals finally overturned Mr. McMIllian’s conviction and death sentence based on the state’s failure to disclose favorable

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