In theory, the death penalty is a very solid idea: People who do egregious crimes deserve egregious punishment. In practice, however, the flaws and shortcomings of such a concept is blatantly evident.

One shortcoming of the death penalty is that at least 4.1 percent of those put under the ultimate boot of justice turn out to be innocent, according to a study done by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. This impartial nature of justice should be deemed unacceptable from any government, let alone a proclaimed democracy. Putting innocents on death row and putting them to death is an injustice and is a grave encroachment of our personal liberties outlined in the Constitution – particularly the eighth amendment which protects us from the infliction of cruel and unusual punishment. If being murdered by your government isn’t a violation of our unalienable rights or considered a cruel and unusual punishment, then I don’t know what would be or is.

Another shortcoming of the implementation of the death penalty comes in the forms of supplies. In the beginning, we would obtain the resources for the death penalty (in particular, the sterilizing method) from foreign nations; however, as many modern countries stray away from the death penalty they are beginning to cut off trade of said products to us. As a result of this, some states have begun to make their own products and with the creation of these products come errors when in practical use. Here is a small list of consequences from said errors while attempting to silently and painlessly execute victims.

With all this said, many defendants of the death penalty claim it to be “uncruel and usual” as they claim the methods to be objectively painless, humane, and concise. But with dozens of faulty executions, can this claim still stand?

Once again, in a perfectly Utopian society where there is an infallible, unlimited access to information of criminals and crimes then yes, the death penalty would be ideal; however, in contemporary society/reality, the practice of the death penalty is faulty at best – sacrificing dozens of lives and ruining hundreds, if not thousands more.

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