A Punishing Debate

Professor Evan Mandery chronicles the decades-long debate over the death penalty.

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Has the debate changed over the decades?

It sounds exactly the same today as it did in the 1970s. The fault lines are the same, and many of the heroes of the story are still on the frontline.

What is the likelihood that the court will once again reverse itself?

I believe that the death penalty will someday be unconstitutional in the United States. Though I think it will at that point be a reflection of a larger social consensus that capital punishment is inhumane. It's difficult to imagine the court attempting to lead public opinion again in this area.

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