Home > criminal justice > Just Say No to Capital Punishment

Just Say No to Capital Punishment

Here is a letter to the New York Times:

Responding to Ohio’s month-long postponement of its next execution after a judicial finding of constant departures from proper execution procedures, the Times editorial rightly concludes that the death penalty ‘cannot be operated responsibly anywhere,’ and justly calls ‘for every state with the penalty on the books to outlaw this barbaric punishment’ (Ohio and the Death Penalty, August 7).

The capital punishment system is rife with failure.  In addition to procedural problems with its implementation, it does not deter violent crime, and far exceeds the cost of imposing life sentences. But most importantly, those charged with implementing the death penalty – prosecutors, jurors, and state officials – are not omniscient actors, immune from inescapable human fallacies.  Undoubtedly, the death penalty claimed innocent lives in the past and will surely do so in the future, proving the Times absolutely right to call for its abolishment.

Brad R. Schlesinger


  1. October 2, 2011 at 7:25 am

    Capital punishment is one of the controversial issues in America and other countries. While capital punishment is obsolete in most of the developed countries of the world, U.S. still practices death penalty in most of its states and has the support of public opinion; there are organizations and groups who are for or against it and each of them have its own justifications based on moral, religious and emotional grounds.


  2. October 2, 2011 at 10:13 am

    Your right about how capital punishment is obsolete in the rest of the western world. In fact, some European countries hesitate to extradite criminals to the US because we still use the death penalty. But whether particular groups have moral, religious, or emotional grounds to justify capital punishment, it doesn’t take away from the fact that the death penalty is bad public policy.


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