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More on the Deterrent Effect of the Death Penalty

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Abstract

If it is difficult, perhaps impossible, to prove statistically—and just as hard to disprove—that the death penalty deters more from capital crimes than available alternative punishments do (such as life imprisonment), why do so many people believe so firmly that the death penalty is a more effective deterrent?

Keywords

Death Penalty Deterrent Effect Homicide Rate Life Imprisonment Innocent Victim 
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Notes

  1. 1.
    For a more thorough discussion of this passage in the Kantian text, including a consideration of the significance of merely, see Jeffrie G. Murphy, Kant: The Philosophy of Right ( London: Macmillan, 1970 ), pp. 140–144.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Estelle v. Smith,(1981) 451 U.S. 454.Google Scholar

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© Ernest van den Haag and John P. Conrad 1983

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