Dead Man Walking: The Death Penalty Essay, Research Paper
I believe that the movie Dead Man Walking impacted my life greatly. It was a very emotional and moving movie. This was an excellent movie because it portrayed the feelings of both the families of the victims and the murder himself. It shows how much pain and suffering the families had to go through with all the sadness and hatred against Matthew Poncelant. The movie also showed how that the families’ hatred did not go away after Matthew was executed. The greatest emotional part of the movie was when Matthew confessed that he did kill the teenagers and that he was truly sorry. From there, he was able to at least die with dignity and also he asked the parents of the teenagers for their forgiveness for him. This movie also showed how the death penalty is biased on those who are poor. Matthew’s partner in the crime received life in prison because he had a better lawyer while Matthew received the death penalty. As stated in appeals session in the movie, Matthew would not have been sitting there if he had the money to buy a better lawyer. Instead he had to have a lawyer given to him by the state who had never preformed a murder trial before. I think that Susan Serandan’s character was portrayed as a good Samaritan. I believe this because, like Samaritan’s back in the time of Jesus, no-one likes to help a murder. Yet she came to his side and was there for him when he needed her. She carried out all his requests even though the parents of the victims’ families castrated her and thought of her as a traitor. I think that she did the right thing since we are all created equal and we should help out someone in need, especially someone who’s about to die. We must put aside our hatred and begin to care because two wrongs don’t make a right and in the end, they are human just like us.
The state murdering people because of their crimes simply does not equate to justice. It is real easy to hear about how the government is doing this wrong or that,but the death penalty is abounded with so many injustices and faults that it’s an embarrassment to our entire due process of law. Supporters of capital punishment subscribe to religious and ethical points of view rather than facts, and when they do offer facts it’s always the same argument: “It’s a deterrent.” The death penalty is extremely flawed, most notably it comes with a very high price tag to an already under-funded correctional institution in America; no stable argument has been installed to warrant it as a deterrent; and the moral decay it establishes creates among other things a feeling of revenge and spite within society. The flaws of capital punishment become too many shortly after they total one. This is because of the focus of the death penalty that being human life. Innocent people being sent to death or being released within weeks of execution are becoming frequent stories on the nightly news. The legal system is disturbingly unable to correctly administer the death penalty. Every day individuals who can’t afford a lawyer have to have one appointed to them under the constitution. These lawyers have little to no incentive to gather all the precious materials to adequately support the accused. A dire-strait circumstance develops when all the materials the prosecution has at his fingers are summed into the equation. If the defendant has a valid case to offer what chance has he to have it properly organized in front of a jury? Another ignorant belief of the death penalty is that it saves money compared to the alternative of life imprisonment. False. In order to preserve due process many long and drawn-out court appeals must be installed at the taxpayer’s expense. On average it takes nine years to administer an inmate on death row an execution. With all the court costs and expenses it costs more then two million dollars after the nine years are finally up. A life prison sentence including beds, meals, and prison space roughly hits the 330 thousand mark Over-spending by the government is on every one’s mind. Racism continues to play an unacceptable and powerful role in capital punishment. In state death penalty cases, the race of the victim is much more important than the prior criminal record of the defender or the actual circumstances of crime. More than half of those inmates on death row are people of color, although they represent only 20% of the people of the U.S. although they are about 6% of the U.S. population, about 40% of those on death row are African American.
The death penalty is the most severe of all sentences. It has been banned in many countries, in the United States, an earlier move to eliminate capital punishment has now been reversed and more and more states are resorting to capital punishment for serious offenses such as murder. An Eye for and eye, a life for a life, but as Mahatma Gandhi once said, “An eye for an eye only makes the whole world blind.” One steals from those who have stolen from him, one wrongs those who have wronged him, but do we really have the right to kill those who have killed? Today, there is a big controversy over capital punishment whether or not it works, or if it is morally right. We have a certain privilege on our own lives, but do the lives of others belong to us as well? Do we have the right to decide the kind of lives others can or cannot live? We find someone guilty of murder and sentence him to death, does that not make murderers out of ourselves? Can justice justify our acts? Those who assist in the death penalty are they not partners in crime? Is the death penalty a “Cruel and Unusual” punishment or is it now a necessary tool in the war on crime? With the increase in crime and violence in our society, the death penalty greatly affects families all across America.