The Case Agaisnt The Death Pen Essay

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The Case Agaisnt The Death Pen Essay, Research Paper Crumley English 112 17 Sep 00 The Case Against Death Penalty This article was written by Eric M. Freedman, and was printed in the USA Today, magazine in March of 1997. Let us start right there with Mr. Freedman. Since this article appeared in the USA Today I assumed that this man was probably one that knew what he was talking about and probably well respected among his peers. He is a professor at Hofstra University School of Law where he teaches Constitutional Law and the Death Penalty. He has addressed many panels of lawyers, prosecutors, judges and even Congress about the death penalty. He graduated from Yale University and is a prominent First Amendment fighter. Now, after all that research I assumed that what I was

about to read was going to be some cold hard facts about capital punishment. After all he appears to be extremely well versed about the Constitution and the death penalty. Since I discovered that he was a professor at Hofstra University I decided to do a slight background check on that particular school because I had personally never heard of Hofstra. Come to find out Hofstra University, according to US NEWS, is ranked number two in the country when it comes to law. Hofstra is currently ranked between Yale, which is ranked first, and Harvard, which is ranked third. Following that information that I discovered I automatically presumed that Mr. Freedman was most definitely a qualified man and not just some radical who opposed the death penalty. Continuing on with the analysis I

figured I would break down the title. The Case Against the Death Penalty can only be seen a few ways in my book. I thought as soon as Crumley 2 I saw the title that this person was writing as an opponent of the death penalty. I further assumed to prove his point that he was going to have a lot of statistics to help back his point. Which for me meant that I was going to have to do more research to help break this essay a part. Anyhow, right as I began reading this article I started to have doubts in Mr. Freedman. In the very first paragraph he states According to critics (USA Today, pg 48) and does not name any of them. Who are these supposed critics? They could be anybody. They could be a whole committee of opponents of the death penalty, who furthermore only show findings that

they agree with. So, I as a reader, have no idea except for the fact that it was a group of so called critics. Then directly after the first paragraph he says that in September of 1995, the state of New York re-instituted the death penalty and that this only meant that New Yorkers will get less crime control than they had before. (USA Today, pg 48) Well I decided to do a tad bit more digging and discovered that, according to the 1992 and 1997 FBI Uniform Crime Report for the New York State area, since 1992 serious crime had declined some 33%. What I also found was that the murder rate was down and violent crime was down 39% and 32% respectively. Now, after proving that one wrong my confidence in Mr. Freedman was dropping rapidly. However, I decided to give him the benefit of the

doubt and said that we all can make mistakes. Next I discovered his main purpose for writing this article in the first sentence of the third paragraph. And he supports this argument with the reasons of the death penalty s enormous cost, a detriment to public safety, it does not reduce crime, is racially Crumley 3 discriminatory, and will eventually be inflicted on the innocent. That just happened to give me a lot more ammunition to pound this article. The next point that Freedman attempts to make is that the death penalty does not reduce crime. What he does not tell you is that the death penalty is not designed to reduce crime. The death penalty is a form of punishment designed to dispose of extremely violent criminals. Freedman of course then moves to support this idea with the