Capital Punishment Essay

2213 words - 9 pages

Pro Capital Punishment Cary Ann Medlin, an innocent eight-year-old little girl, loved to swim and ride bicycles. She took ballet lessons and went to church on regular basis. On one peaceful Saturday afternoon, Cary went for a bicycle ride around her neighborhood like every other child. Robert Coe, who probably had known her father, drove a car and somehow had persuaded Cary to shown him where she lived. That was also the last time Cary was seen alive. The next day, a tipster called the police and hinted to them where they could find Cary's body. To the family's horror, Cary's defenseless body was found at the outskirt of Greenfield, Tennessee, beaten, raped, strangled, and stabbed in the neck. (Loggins) After Coe testified against himself, he received a death penalty for murder and two life sentences for kidnaping and rape. After 21 years of trial and appeals, Robert Coe's time finally came to an end; in fact, he was the first man ever to receive lethal injection in 40 years in Tennessee. Even before his execution, he neither showed remorse nor apologized to Cary's family. Indeed, this is a success story of justice, but it does not always seem to be a success. For example, in 1975, four years before Cary's murder, Coe was accused in Florida of raping and murdering Jim Marable's daughter, who was 19 at the time of her death. Although he was accused, the law was unable to keep him behind bars; instead, he went looking for his next victim, Cary Medlin. (Loggins, 5+) John Rawls stated, "Punishment is justified on the grounds that wrongdoing merits punishment. It is morally fitting that a person who does wrong should suffer in proportion to his wrongdoing." (Hinman) According to Rawl's philosophies, a person who commits a crime should receive the punishment with severity proportional to the severity of that crime. Capital punishment is a punishment by death given to those who had committed capital crimes such as first-degree murder. Thus, capital punishment should be a national policy administered by the criteria of duty, security and justice. When our founding fathers wrote the U.S. Constitution, it was produced under the influence of John Locke's work, The Second Treatise of Government, or better known as "social contract." Social contract is an agreement held by the government and its citizens in a society to fulfill the obligation of each side. It is to uphold individuals' natural rights, which later became known in the declaration of Independence as, "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness." The right to life, liberty, and property are the most essential natural rights of all human beings. According to philosopher Thomas Hobbes in his theory of social contract, the only reason for an individual to leave the state of nature and join a society is for the preservation of life. This natural instinct of human to uphold the value of self-preservation makes life one of the most essential values a...

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