Executing the Mentally Retarded
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The paper gives a history of the death sentence in America, examining states such as Texas where it is is used more frequently than other states. The paper then examines the issue of executing criminals whose IQ's are low and who are obviously mentally impaired, using the example of Ricky Ray Rector, executed in 1992 in Arkansas, as an example. The paper discusses the laws and guidelines laid down by the constitution on this matter, as well as the stand of the American Association for Mental Retardation (AAMR) which is obviously against executing the mentally impaired. The paper shows the criteria AAMR have to define someone who is retarded. Finally, the paper concludes by arguing against the death sentence for anyone proven mentally impaired.
From the Paper:"Like Ricky Ray Rector, the man who asked the guards to save his dessert so he could eat it after his execution, these people just don't have the mental capacity to fathom what is happening to them. The only 'good' point, if there is one, is that they are not scared to die because they don't really understand what it means to be executed. One man even said that he wanted to "be God's gardener and take care of the animals" (Several, 2002).
While it's good that these people are not frightened, that still doesn't make their execution right. It should be stopped, but lawmakers have not worked hard enough to make that a reality just yet. It's unfathomable to many people how the government can look into the eyes of someone who is profoundly mentally retarded and then have them killed. These people are from all walks of life, ages, and races. Their only commonality is their mental disability, and that makes them vulnerable to our justice system."
Cite this Argumentative Essay:
Executing the Mentally Retarded (2003, March 28) Retrieved April 19, 2021, from https://www.academon.com/argumentative-essay/executing-the-mentally-retarded-22793/
"Executing the Mentally Retarded" 28 March 2003. Web. 19 April. 2021. <https://www.academon.com/argumentative-essay/executing-the-mentally-retarded-22793/>