Preview
Preview

Essay on Death Penalty Applied to Juveniles

:: 6 Works Cited
Length: 1688 words (4.8 double-spaced pages)
Rating: Blue      
Open Document




- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Death Penalty Applied to Juveniles


     In 1643 a sixteen year old boy was put to death for sodomizing a cow.
Three hundred and fifty years later, sixteen states have legitimized the
execution of juveniles. Four of those twelve states have lowered the legal age
of execution to twelve. For whatever reasons the death penalty has been
supported by the public since this country's existence. In this day and age of
increasing violence, both juvenile and adult, it is time to re-examine the use
of the death penalty as the ultimate solution to crime. The social repercussions
of enforcing the state executions of juveniles far outweigh any of the benefits
that may be gained.

     The cry for the death penalty is most loudly heard when referring to it
as use of a deterrent. According to Allen Kale "it is estimated that about 76%
of the American public support the use of the death penalty as a deterrent,
however that support drops to less than 9% when referring specifically to
juveniles." (Kale 1) The mindset of the American public seems to be drastically
different when dealing juveniles. And yet, with only 9% of the public supporting
the policy, it remains in effect.

      Another strong outcry for the death penalty comes from those wanting
restitution for the death of a loved one. It is the thought that a life is the
ultimate price to pay which fuels this argument. The delineation between adults
and juveniles is much less clear on this point. Age doesn't seem to make much of
a difference when dealing with restitution. Putting an individual to death seems
to put the minds of certain individuals at ease. This argument is what makes
that 9% seem to be the vast majority.

     The distinction between juveniles and adults is a very important one.
It is often a deciding factor when one is choosing to support the death penalty
or not. Although the difference often consists of just a few short years, it is
those years which make all the difference. Often its deterrent effect and costs
are greatly affected by age and maturity. In fact, most theories and reasons for
supporting the death penalty are flawed when applying them to juveniles.

     The debate over whether or not the death penalty is an effective
deterrent is likely to continue as long as it is in place. However, its
deterrent effect towards juveniles is more obvious. There ar...


... middle of paper ...


...t costly, racist, and ineffective policy ever enacted in this country.

     Clearly there are issues surrounding the death penalty which need to be
addressed. If it is to continue to be used it must be re-examined. There are
several factors which need to be taken into consideration; not simply the sleep
that families can get after an execution. Whether it's the costs, its use as a
deterrent, the death penalty continues to fail its intended purpose. This is not
something to be ignored, and it is not something that "they" have to deal with.
The impacts of the death penalty affect us all. If nothing else these juveniles
are simply too young.

Works Cited

Bright, Steven. Young Blood. New York: Hampton and Row, 1993

Fox, James. "Innocent Killers. Christian Science Moniter 12 Feb. 1996: 71-72

Heft, Henry. "Deterring Juveniles." A.B.A. Journal June 1989: 30

Horwitz, Carl. "Effective Means of Deterring Criminals." Crime and Criminals
May1995:1

Kale, Allen. "How does the public feel?" Time Aug. 1995: 35

Radic Steve. "Searching For Answers." Criminal Justice Ethics July 1996: 5

Strieb, Victor. Imposing the Death Penalty on Children. California: Sage, 1987


Click the button above to view the complete essay, speech, term paper, or research paper

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »







This essay is 100% guaranteed.


Title Length Color Rating  
Juveniles and The Death Penalty Essay - Juveniles and The Death Penalty *No Works Cited One of the most controversial issues in the rights of juveniles today is addressed in the question, "Should the death penalty be applied to juveniles". For nearly a century the juvenile courts have existed to shield the majority of juvenile offenders from the full weight of criminal law and to protect their entitled "special rights and immunities." In the case of kent vs. United states in 1996, Justice Fortas stated some of these "special rights" which include; Protection from publicity, confinement only to twenty-one years of age, no confinement with adults, and protection against the consequences of adult conviction such as the loss of civil...   [tags: Papers] 1599 words
(4.6 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Islamic Law and the Juvenile Death Penalty Essay - As Emile Durkheim, believed society's punishments are a window through which society's “true nature” can be viewed. And an important reason why this punishment is thought of with such repugnance is that they have been historically linked to the process of torture. But if a poll were conducted tomorrow in Islamic countries, would we find considerable support for juvenile death penalty. Despite the abolition or moratorium of capital punishment for juveniles in Islamic countries, still children are being executed....   [tags: capital punishment, death penalty]
:: 3 Works Cited
970 words
(2.8 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Juvenile Death Penalty Essay - A 16 year old boy is at the peak of their adolescent life, learning and discovering about puberty, maturity, right and wrong and future life goals. On the other hand, a man of 25 has matured, lived long enough to have made both good and bad judgments and has already been in the process of achieving those life goals they once thought of as a teenager. In a given situation, is it ethical to hold these two age groups, with mentalities that are worlds apart, to the same standards and punishments in the justice system....   [tags: capital punishment, death penalty]
:: 13 Works Cited
3657 words
(10.4 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
The Death Penalty Essay - Capital Punishment The Death Penalty In the United States many crimes are committed every day, people killing another person, raping innocent children. I strongly believe that people who committed a crime should be punished and punished harshly and those who commit harm to another person should die. The Capital Punishment is a controversial topic that affects society as a whole and causes a great deal of disagreement. Capital punishment is the government legally kills an individual as punishment for a serious crime....   [tags: Capital Punishment Essays] 1558 words
(4.5 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
Life Without Parole for Juveniles Essay - Supreme Court ruling Graham v. Florida (2010) banned the use of life without parole for juveniles who committed non-homicide crimes, and Roper v. Simmons (2005) abolished the use of the death penalty for juvenile offenders. They both argued that these sentences violated the 8th Amendment, which prohibits cruel and unusual punishment. While these landmark cases made great strides for the rights of minors passing through the criminal justice system, they are just the first steps in creating a juvenile justice system that takes into consideration the vast differences between adolescents and adults....   [tags: Criminal Justice]
:: 2 Works Cited
958 words
(2.7 pages)
Better Essays [preview]
A Critical Look in Current Events Facing Juveniles in the Juvenile Justice System - A Critical Look in Current Events Facing Juveniles in the Juvenile justice system The juvenile justice system was founded on the belief that juveniles should be rehabilitated from committing crime. It was the belief of the government that juveniles do not posses the cognitive reasoning of adults, therefore should not be punished as adults. The juvenile court was formed in 1899 with the belief that the government needs to play a more active role in the rehabilitation of juveniles. This belief held strong up until the 1980's when President Ronald Reagan took office....   [tags: Ethics] 1801 words
(5.1 pages)
Powerful Essays [preview]
No Death Penalty For Minors Essay example - The Death Penalty is the execution of criminals for committing crimes regarded so bad that this is the only acceptable punishment. It establishes order in society by putting the fear of death in to would be killers. Although this works for the most part, one has to wonder if a child who commits murder thinks about the fact that it can lead to a death sentence. Studies by the Harvard Medical School, the National Institute of Mental Health and the UCLA’s Department of Neuroscience found that the frontal and pre-frontal lobes of the brain, which regulate impulse control and judgment, are not fully developed in adolescents....   [tags: No Death Penalty for Juveniles] 463 words
(1.3 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
Capital Punishment in the United States Essay - The death penalty is a controversial topic in the United States today and has been for a number of years. The death penalty is currently legal in 38 states and two federal jurisdictions (Winters 97). The death penalty statutes were overturned and then reinstated in the United States during the 1970's due to questions concerning its fairness (Flanders 50). The death penalty began to be reinstated slowly, but the rate of executions has increased during the 1990's (Winters103-107). There are a number of arguments in favor of the death penalty....   [tags: Death Penalty Row Law Criminals Essays] 2516 words
(7.2 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]
No Death Penalty for Juveniles Essay - Children are told to be innovative, explore life, and that there mistakes will teach them life lessons. While most children major punishments are extracted by their parents and guardians, a small number go beyond a petty crime and violated the law. The New Oxford American Dictionary states that the death penalty is, “the punishment of execution, administered to someone legally convicted of a capital crime.” Capital crimes array from murder to drug trafficking. In the United States the death penalty is mostly administered towards first-degree murder, with non-murder crimes varying by state....   [tags: Criminal Justice ]
:: 6 Works Cited
2179 words
(6.2 pages)
Good Essays [preview]
Juveniles and the Death Penalty Essay - Juveniles and the Death Penalty It was a warm summer evening in a small town in the state of Missouri. John Freshman, a white male gang member fourteen years of age, drives down a street that he knows his rival gang members are usually standing along. John pulls his 9 MM. automatic pistol out from underneath his seat and points it at the group of rival gang members. John opens fire and unloads his weapon at anybody standing along the street. As John pulls away from the area, he almost gets into an accident with a parked vehicle and drops his weapon....   [tags: Papers] 1179 words
(3.4 pages)
Strong Essays [preview]