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Lethal StateA History of the Death Penalty in North Carolina$
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Seth Kotch

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781469649870

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: January 2020

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469649870.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.northcarolina.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of North Carolina Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NCSO for personal use.date: 18 September 2021



A History of Failure?

(p.180) Conclusion
Lethal State

Seth Kotch

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter theorizes the death penalty as an outcropping of our political failings and our desire to fix failing institutions rather than eliminate them. It argues that the death penalty has failed by any reasonable measure, but also that this failure is a normal feature of institutions. It lays out the different kinds of failures the death penalty has undergone: to punish fairly, to punish painlessly, to bring resolution to victims of crime, to have any effect at all on crime rates. Today’s death penalty even fails to execute, as there have been no executions since 2006.

Keywords:   death penalty, death penalty abolition, failure, death penalty litigation, death penalty moratorium

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