Capital Punishment is usually understood as a government-sanctioned practice whereby a person is put to death for a crime they committed, usually being rather heinous crimes like murder, rape, terrorism, large-scale drug trafficking, espionage, treason and any other crime that the court in charge deems that the accused should be put to death for it. 56 countries retain capital punishment, 103 countries have completely abolished it for all crimes, 6 have abolished it for ordinary crimes, and 30 still allow it, however, it is not practised.
This form of punishment is a rather controversial one in both countries that use it and those that don’t. Those in favour of capital punishment say that this form of method brings justice to those severely affected by the crime and their families, especially when we are talking about murder, and makes sure that the criminal will never hurt anyone else. It is also said that being faced with death if caught deters potential criminals from committing the crime.
On the other hand, those against capital punishment say that capital punishment is also seen by those against it as a savage and uncivil way of dealing with such people. Taking the easy way out and simply dealing with them by getting rid of them. Although it is a more time consuming and expensive method, making sure that such people never commit these crimes again through proper education, help these people properly contemplate for what they had done, repent their actions, and change their way of life.
While we claim to be a modern society, we allow all sort of ‘legal’ killings to occur. This point also extends to assisted suicide, abortion, and any other sort of life-determining decision people want to legalize in the name of personal freedoms rather than societal needs. In a moral point of view, two wrongs don’t make one right. We cannot blindly accept the philosophy of “an eye for an eye”, a ‘death for a death’.
Another major issue with capital punishment is that the accused might not be the actual person who committed the crime. Unfortunately, our current form of justice allows for many innocents accused to be found guilty, especially if such person has little means to hire a good professional to defend him in court. This, therefore, shows that a court must be 100% sure, beyond the shadow of any doubt, that the accused is the one who had actually committed the crime in question.
In my opinion, capital punishment should be removed from all countries as soon as possible. Everyone’s life is precious, even that of the worst murderers, and therefore even they should not be deprived of this right to live. The death penalty is nothing more than a savage, arbitrary and pointless form of punishment which thankfully is slowly but surely being less and less used in courts of justice throughout the world.
Written by: Nathan Portelli