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Eng1A - Fall 1999

Capital Punishment Online Assignment

 Your Name  Your E-Mail Address

For this assignment, you will read several sources covering different aspects of capital punishment, and then answer questions about the sources. You can do the entire assignment from this page. Click on the links to get to the sources, then use the GO button to get back to this page. Highlight the page titled Capital Punishment Assignment, and let go. To answer questions, first click in the text box, then type in your answer. At the bottom of the page, click on the SUBMIT button. If you have any questions or problems, ask the reference librarian for help.



First we'll look at a PowerPoint Presentation designed by Lawrence Hinman, from the University of San Diego.

Use the buttons at the bottom of the screen to move from slide to slide.

The single forward arrow will move you one slide forward.

 1. According to Hinman, an American born today has a 1 in 20 chance of spending time in jail. For an Affrican American, the chances go up to 1 in how many?  
 2. What does "lex talionis" mean?  
 3. What are the two justifications of punishment that Hinman talks about?  
 4. According to Hinman, the deterrence argument has two premises: that punishment deters crime, and that reducing crime is good. The conclusion of these 2 premises is that:  

Next we'll go to the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics. This site will give you statistics for the number of executions during 1997, plus the number of prisoners under sentence of death in the various states.

 5. How many total executions were there during 1997?  
 6. Out of that total, what percentage came from the state with the highest number of executions?  
 7. What state has the highest number of prisoners under sentence of death?  

Time Magazine published an article about the Controversies on Death Row back in June 1997. Scan through this article.

 8. Who is Ramon Martinez-Villareal?  
 9. Describe the case of the only woman mentioned in this article.  


The next site is Dead Man Talking, a rather famous site consisting of a series of columns by death row inmate Dean.

 10. Click on the link to Dean's latest column. What is his subject for this column?  

Next, look at the case of the lynching of 15-year old Kimmy Dotts by a group of teenagers. At the murder trial, Kimmy's parents asked the prosecutor not to seek the death penalty.

Background Story Final Disposition

 11. What were the parents' reasons for not wanting the death penalty for their daughter's murderer?  

The next two links are two personal accounts, or opinions, of the death penalty. Your job is to look at both of them, decide which is for and which against capital punishment, who the author is for each article, and what gives them the authority or credentials to voice this opinion. Have they had personal experience that gives them insight? Have they conducted research on the subject? Are they recognized authorities on capital punishment or spirituality or criminology or any other area that might give them some expertise?

Site 1 Site 2

 12. Describe your findings here.  


Congratulations! You have just finished your online assignment. Before you click on the SUBMIT button, make sure that you've entered your name at the top of the page. Also, please answer one more question.

 13. How long did it take you to complete this assignment?  

Now click on the SUBMIT button.

This page was last updated on Sept. 8, 1999.
Please send messages to Jo Anne Howell for questions or comments.

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