First of all, I would like to define the death penalty. Death penalty is when someone is put to death using different types of methods, for a serious crime such as murder, rape and drug dealing. It is also known as capital punishment, which comes from the Latin word ‘capital’ meaning ‘regarding the head’. So therefore the most common way of capital punishment is hanging or decapitating. Although many countries refrain from using capital punishment, many countries still practice it. Countries like USA, Saudi Arabia, China, etc. still use capital punishment. In my opinion, I personally agree with capital punishment as it creates a sense of fear in the minds of the criminals, so he/she will think twice before committing a crime. It also makes the family of the victim get justice and they will be satisfied with the decision. If the prisoner is let go of, then he/she will commit the crime again without fearing for his/her death. “Justice requires punishing the guilty even if only some can be punished and sparing the innocent, even if all are not spared. Morally, justice must always be preferred to equality. Justice cannot ever permit sparing some guilty person, or punishing some innocent ones, for the sake of equality-because others have been spared or punished. In practice, penalties could never be applied if we insisted that they can be inflicted on only a guilty person unless we are able to make sure that they are equally applied to all other guilty persons. Anyone familiar with the law enforcement knows that punishments can be inflicted only on an unavoidable “shudder” selection of the guilty (Bedau, H., 1977).
Irwin Isenberg (1977) said, when you kill a man with premeditation, you do something different than stealing from him. “I favor the death penalty as a matter of justice and human dignity even apart from deterrence. The penalty must be appropriate to the seriousness of the crime (p. 135).” (http://www.prodeathpenalty.com/ornellaspaper.htm)
Capital punishment varies from country to country, place to place. Some places it is just fast beheading or hanging, while in other places, it is full of torture and slow death. In religion, me being a Muslim, has to follow the Islamic Sharia’a, which includes capital punishment and it is the choice of the victims family to give capital punishment to the criminal or not. But only for very serious crimes such as rape and murder. As stated in the Quran: “If anyone kills a person- unless it be (a punishment) for murder or for spreading mischief in the land- it would be as if he/she has killed all of mankind. And if anyone saves a life, it would be as if he saved the life of all mankind” (Qur’an 5:32). Also, the death penalty could eradicate the problem of overflowing prisons. If they keep prisoners for life in their prisons, that would mean providing space for them to stay, food, shelter, clothing, etc. which would waste a lot of resources and prison space. The prisoners with life sentences could still kill other prisoners or guards while in prison and could even escape and go on a killing rampage throughout the place. And it is more than fair because the victim was an innocent human being and had his/her life taken away without having to have his/her last wish or write his/her will and was killed without any reason. So therefore, why should the criminal let to live after he/she has taken the life of an innocent human being? And not giving a death sentence to the criminal who has killed/raped another innocent human being will not be fair as this will show empathy towards the criminal which is wrong. It also prevents other inmates in prison serving life sentences from killing more people while in prison, because if there is no death penalty, then they would keep killing without having anything to lose. Also the crime rate will swell, as the criminal will not fear death penalty as there is no death penalty and they could go about killing people without having to fear the capital punishment. On the other hand, Capital punishment means that they could be taking some innocent persons life without much evidence. For example, a person who is accused of doing a major crime, but has not really done it and cannot prove himself will be put to death for his crime. So it takes the lives of innocent people in rare cases and in old ages. But due to the technological advances, DNA testing and other ways of getting evidence can make certain that the accused is the real criminal. People also say that the death penalty is a barbaric act, but the criminal committing the crime does not think about barbaric acts while committing the crime. But keeping a person in prison could be more torturous and painful and it would be better for the prisoner to die rather than live in the prison, so then keeping the criminal in prison would be a much more severe punishment than the death penalty. Also people who have given up on life and wanting to suicide, can go on a killing rampage and then get sentenced for capital punishment, which is what they want. So it would be better if they kept them in prison to not fulfill their desire. Other countries which do not use the death penalty would have better likeness of the countries which do not use the death penalty. I would personally agree with the death penalty as it gives a sigh of relief to the victim’s family and would deter future major crimes. This is the most debatable topic in the criminal justice system. There are many advantages and disadvantages to the death penalty, but if people see the advantages and disadvantages correctly and have empathy for the victims then, they will support capital punishment more. So therefore regarding my previous arguments, having the death penalty is a better option of serving justice in the criminal justice system, as it will help curb future criminals.
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