The death penalty is an issue that has the United States quite divided. While there are many supporters of it, there is also a large amount of opposition. Currently, there are thirty-three states in which the death penalty is legal and seventeen states that have abolished it (Death Penalty Information Center). I believe the death penalty should be legal throughout the nation. There are many reasons as to why I believe the death penalty should be legalized in all states, including deterrence, retribution, and morality; and because opposing arguments do not hold up, I will refute the ideas that the death penalty is unconstitutional, irrevocable mistakes are made, and that there is a disproportionality of race and income level.
The use of capital punishment greatly deters citizens from committing crimes such as murder. Many people’s greatest fear is death; therefore if they know that death is a possible consequence for their actions, they are less likely to perform such actions. Ernest van den Haag, a professor at Fordham University, wrote about the issue of deterrence:
“…capital punishment is likely to deter more than other punishments because people fear death more than anything else. They fear most death deliberately inflicted by law and scheduled by the courts….Hence, the threat of the death penalty may deter some murderers who otherwise might not have been deterred. And surely the death penalty is the only penalty that could deter prisoners already serving a life sentence and tempted to kill a guard, or offenders about to be arrested and facing a life sentence.” (Death Penalty Curricula for High School)
van den Haag brings forth the argument that capital punishment is the strongest deterrent society has against murder, which has been proven in many studies. “Since society has the highest interest in preventing murder, it should use the strongest punishment available to deter murder…” (Death Penalty Curricula for High School). In a study conducted by...