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Insanity Plea

One of the many issues that trouble the American Justice System today is that of the insanity defense. This defense has been brought in front ofcourts for years and has caused massive debate. The insanity defense plays a powerful role in our society which begs for justice. However some look upon it as a god sent, while other feel it is the enemy. "The insanity defense is rooted in a basic principle of justice: that it is unfair to hold persons responsible for their actions when they don't know, or cant control, what they are doing" (Worth 16), but is it true that people really don't "know" what they are doing; and if so should they still be punished for it?
Many who share negative feelings towards the insanity defense believe that it is not a defense in the victims case but a defense to aid the perpetrator. "In courts the insanity defense has been used as a loophole for criminals to jump through, and escape a deserved punishment." States law student Cedrick Burrows. Crimes in our society are believed to not go unpunished, and with the introduction of the insanity defense into our courts criminals are beginning to dodge such promised justice. What about the families of the victims who have been raped, murdered, or beaten; what justice are they served if their attacker is let to walk free or spend time in a mental institution?
Many others who are for the insanity defense believe it is unfair to punish a person when they are not aware of the crime they have committed. They believe that a person who wasn't aware of the crime or tuned in to what is right or wrongcan not be placed in the same category of those who knowingly kill, rape, or beat innocent people.
One case in which the inconsistency of the insanity defense is apparent is in that of the assassinator of former president James Garfield. Charles Julius Guiteau, after being caught and detained

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