Pros And Cons Of Capital Punishment And The Eighth Amendment

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Introduction:
Despite the common misconception that capital punishment leads to a safer and utopian society, research provides evidence that there is no correlation between the two. During 1972, the Supreme Court of Georgia ruled against the use of capital punishment in the Furman v Georgia case. This ruling arose after three African Americans were put on stand after being accused for different cases of murder and rape. Although death penalty was already imposed for these three cases, the court decided that death was “cruel and unusual” and consequently abolished the use of it. The US Supreme Court’s decision on the abolition of capital punishment was correct because capital punishment violates the eighth and fourteenth amendments, provides no evidence of deterioration of crime rates, and falls unequally on society.

Violates Eighth Amendment:
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It clearly violates the eighth amendment that states, “[E]xcessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted." (Eighth Amendment.) The segment of ‘cruel’ refers to a punishment that is brutal and inflicts severe pain of the suspect, whilst ‘unusual’ implies that the punishment is generally not associated with the crime that has been presumably been committed. The supreme court of Georgia explained, in a five to four ruling, that “capital sentencing based on the unguided discretion of juries offends the "cruel and unusual punishment" clause of the Eighth Amendment” due to the fact that it permits “juries to impose the distinctively profound sentence of death on some convicted defendants while other juries impose the far different sentence of life imprisonment on large numbers of similarly situated defendants convicted of exactly the same crime.” (Furman v.
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