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Death Penalty and The Eighth Amendment
The expression “an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth” has taken on a whole new
meaning. Lately, murderers have been getting a punishment equal to their crime,
death. In 1967, executions in the United States were temporarily suspended to
give the federal appellate courts time to decide whether or not the death
penalty was unconstitutional. Then, in 1972, the United States Supreme Court
ruled in the case of “Furman versus Georgia” that the death penalty violated
the Eight Amendments. According to the Eighth Amendment, “Excessive bail shall
not be required, no excessive fines imposed, nor cruel or unusual punishments
inflicted.” After the Supreme Court made this ruling, states reviewed their
death penalty laws. In 1976, in the case of “Gregg versus Georgia” the Supreme
Court ruled state death penalty laws were not unconstitutional. Presently in
the United States the death penalty can only be used as punishment for
intentional killing. Still, the death penalty violates the Eighth Amendment and
should be outlawed in the United States.
Currently in the United States there are five methods used for executing
criminals: the electric chair, gas chamber, lethal injection, hanging, and
firing squad, each of them equally cruel and unusual in there own ways.
When a person is sentenced to death by electrocution he strapped to a
chair and electrodes are attached to his head and leg. The amount of voltage is
raised and lowered a few times...