commutation death penalty death sentences deterrence Furman vs. Georgia Gregg vs. Georgia U.S. Supreme Court

40th Anniversary of Furman v. Georgia; Death Penalty Still “Arbitrary, Capricious, and Discriminatory”

Today, June 29, 2012, marks 40 years since the United States Supreme Court overturned all existing death penalty laws, ruling in the case of Furman vs. Georgia (1972) that the death penalty system, as it was being administered, was arbitrary, capricious, and discriminatory.  At the time, Justice Potter Stewart said death sentences were as cruel […]

capital punishment death penalty deterrence National Research Council

The Final Collapse of the Deterrence Argument?

In upholding the revised capital punishment statutes of several states back in 1976, the U.S. Supreme Court recognized two main purposes of the death penalty: 1.) deterrence (to stop people from committing capital offenses out of fear of being executed) and 2.) retribution (punishment that is proportionate to, and warranted by, the crime).  A new […]