Capital Punishment was first used back in the fifth century as means of punishment. Many means were used to kill the person back then such as crucifixion, drowning, beating to death, burning alive, and impalement. These punishments were really harsh and cruel. Thousands of people in the past were killed by these means of punishment, not including the hundreds that are killed each day in today's society. Capital Punishment can be defined as punishable by death (Webster 86). Various reasons can be made about why capital punishment should remain in today's society. One thing is that it cuts down on crime. Another reason is that it is a life for a life. Someone shouldn't be able to kill someone and not have anything done back to that person. Capital punishment is a controversial issue that should remain in use in the United States of America. .
Britain was the first country to ever influence the death penalty into America's society. It started when European settlers had come to America bringing Capital Punishment with them. The first recorded execution ever happened in the colony of Jamestown, Virginia, in 1608. The man's name was Captain George Kendall. He was executed for being a spy from Spain. In 1612, Sir Thomas Dale governor of Virginia had made Moral and Martial laws which meant the death penalty could be used for minor offenses such as stealing grapes, killing chickens, and trading with Indians. The issue of the death penalty was brought up in the Supreme Court in 1972 in the Furman vs. Georgia case. Furman said that capital cases resulted in "arbitrary and capricious sentencing" (Bohm). Furman challenged the Eighth Amendment. The Supreme Court decided that "cruel and unusual punishment" (Bohm) violated the Eighth Amendment. Then on July 29, 1972, the Supreme Court suspended the death penalty, saying it was unconstitutional. In order to get the death penalty working again, the Court told the states to rewrite the statutes and eradicate all the problems that we noticed in the Furman case.