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What is the significance or impact Gregg vs. Georgia has on American society?

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trialanderror | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 1) Salutatorian

Posted February 14, 2012 at 12:25 PM via web

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What is the significance or impact Gregg vs. Georgia has on American society?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted February 14, 2012 at 12:34 PM (Answer #1)

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The significance of Gregg v. Georgia is that it made the death penalty legal once again.  The death penalty had been illegal for a few years, but it was reinstated by Gregg.  The death penalty has come to be something of a hot topic in American politics.  There has been a great deal of controversy over whether it should be abolished and what sorts of reforms should be made to its administration.  These would not have existed had the Court kept the death penalty illegal in Gregg.

However, it seems likely that the issue of the death penalty would have become a major political issue even if Gregg had been decided differently.  America is too conservative of a country (and was even more so at that time) with regard to crime and punishment to have simply allowed the death penalty to be banned permanently.

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