The Death Penalty is an issue that has been debating for over many years. There are a lot of articles about the effect of capital punishment on the U. S society. However, not all of these articles are convincible. One example of this is “The Death Penalty Hurt Society,” by John D. Bessler. The main point of his article is about how unaffected the death penalty is to prevent crime. Additionally, he brings up some problem with the capital punishment that the U. S has to face such as the conviction of innocent and terrorism.
Even though the article seems to have many facts as evidence to support the argument, the author does a very poor job delivering his message by relying on loaded words, pathos, and inductive reasoning. One place that the author fell short is when he uses pathos to support his article. In the first paragraph, Bessler notes, “Indeed, so long as the death penalty exists, there will be men like Anthony Porter, one of many death-row inmates recently exonerated in Illinois alone, who are sent to death row in error” (Bessler 15F).
This is clearly the author’s attempt of using pathos to engage people in fear and make them believe that the death penalty could never be a solution to stop crime. However, what Bessler says may not be true. The execution of an innocent is extremely rare. To reach to the final decision of capital punishment, the Court has to spend a large amount of time and effort into pre-trial, trial, and appeal to make sure there is no conviction of the innocent.
Another area of this writing that makes the article fall apart is the use of loaded word such as, “Using capital punishment only sends the misguided message to members of society that killing already-incarcerated criminals can somehow solve the problem of violence in American life”(Bessler 15F). In this statement, the author uses loaded word “only”. By using the word “only”, Bessler tries to make people believe in what he says without showing any evidence. Death Penalty is a controversial issue in all over the world.
How does an issue like this can just simply send people a wrong idea about violence? Rather than sending a misguided message, the death penalty can help prevent future crime and make the society more safety. Also poorly delivered in the article is the statement “State of Minnesota, …abolished capital punishment in 1911 and yet has one of the lowest violent-crime rates in the country…… In contrast, active death-penalty states such as Texas and Louisiana regularly have some of the country’s highest murder rates…. American’s death-penalty states have igher homicide rates than do non-death-penalty states” (Bessler 15F). This is clearly nothing but inductive reasoning. In this statement, Bessler has based only on the three states Minnesota, Texas, and Louisiana then relate them to all other 47 states in the U. S. Yet, maybe the state of Minnesota has lower crime rates than Texas and Louisiana, but this does not prove that the death penalty has no effect on any states of America. Capital Punishment may not completely stop all the crime in the U. S. but it could help lower the crime rate.
Imagine how much more violent-crime rate Texas could have without the Death Penalty. The author did use some facts to back up his side, but these facts are nothing compare to many loaded words, pathos, and inductive reasoning in the article. That’s why this article is not recommended for people who want to know about the Death Penalty. However, whether a person is a pro- or con- death penalty, they still have to agree that taken away someone’s life is a big deal, and the justice system needs to be extremely careful with its decision.