Summary Of Nathanson's Argument Against Capital Punishment

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Nathanson uses his essay, Does It Matter If the Death Penalty Is Arbitrarily Administered, to combat the notion that capital punishment is an effective outcome for criminals. It is my goal to propose that capital punishment in itself is as fair outcome, and point out that it should remain established as long as the ones sentencing criminals to this fate are held to higher, more fair standards. The driving force behind Nathanson’s argument against capital punishment is statistics. While no one comes forth to outright say that race plays an important role in the decision on who receives capital punishment, there are statistical findings put forth by Bowers and Pierce state that killers of whites have the highest chance of being executed …show more content…

First, Nathanson’s argument is based in majority upon statistics and therefore I must invoke the question of whether correlation equates to causation or not. The fact that statistically more blacks or murderers of whites receive the death penalty must be observed more closely as there could be many reasons attributing to sentencing to death. Many of the statistics presented do not accurately represent the cause of the correlation. Second, I present the argument that even if there was truth behind a relationship between discrimination and death penalties, the problem lies with those who are handing out these sentences rather than the idea of a death penalty. The problem can be solved by establishing more set guidelines on who receives the death sentence by making the death penalty more like a civil law practice rather than our form of common law where precedence decides the ruling. If all cases where the death penalty was in play involved a civil law style action and reaction approach, then all question of racial bias would be irrelevant. Simply put, if one is charged with a certain type of murder, then the judge would look up the appropriate action established previously and sentence the person to death should it be deemed necessary rather than a judge getting to decide to follow precedence or not in the case of issuing capital punishment. The problem is judges, not

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