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Abolition of the Death Penalty - Essay Example

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Abolition of the Death Penalty

Means of capital punishment include but not limited to; hanging, crucifixion, electrocution, stoning etc. Van Den Haag gives five reasons justifying the constitutionality of the death penalty by concluding that the constitution allows for death penalty which is not the case (van den hag 128).The constitution states that “if life was to be taken away as form of punishment, then it must be in accordance with the due process of the law”, this proposition is conditional and accords the government a choice to either abolish it or effect it in light of the due process of the law. For this reason I wish to put forth arguments that would lead to the abolition of death penalty. Dissenting Van den hag argues that the death penalty acts as deterrence for future murders. Death being the most severe form of punishment is most feared and a murder would think before carrying out his intention. Previous studies have shown that quiet a number of murders were deterred since the introduction of death sentence. However, the death sentence takes quiet a long time before it is administered and the use of alternative equally feared forms of punishments could be used instead as a form of deterrence. Deterrence has its limitations as someone already imprisoned and sentenced for death would not be afraid to kill their inmates as well as the prison guards. Death sentence can only be effective in deterring murders if it is carried out fast enough which is usually not the case. Retributive justice comes into play when an imbalance occurs in society due to a loss of life from the hands of a criminal. That balance must be restored by taking away the murderers life. Concurring In rebuttal to deterrence, the death sentence has not been proven to deter future murders. The difference between life imprisonment and death sentence is negligible. Death sentence can have the effect of brutalizing the society, which then makes it a less effective tool for deterring murder as this increases the possibility of more murder (Anckar, 2004, 189). Most murders are committed by people in altered states of mind. It might be that a person acted in moments of immense emotional imbalance due to anger or substance abuse. Also, the person committing murder does not expect to be found out. It would be suffice to say that the death sentence cannot deter such persons or drug abusing criminals from committing murder as they are not in a position to evaluate the possibility of life imprisonment or the death penalty itself. The death penalty has not been proven to deter more murders than life imprisonment, as most prisoners serving life imprisonment are involved in routine works and like any other prisoner, they are unlikely to commit any crime. People’s security can be guaranteed by offering life sentence without parole without having to use the death penalty (Bae,2007, 235). Long-term imprisonment being a severe punishment can deter any rational human being from committing murder; however this is not possible as most premeditated murders involve a criminal who is planning on not getting caught or people who murdered out of sheer emotion.. Police in states with the death penalty are not safe compared to police officers in abolitionist states. Also, prison personnel and prisoners are not safe in states with the death penalty than those without. (Wolftson, 1982, 167) In rebuttal to retribution, Sanctity of life should not be compromised to death penalty. Retribution being akin to revenge should not be exercised by a civilized society. Capital punishment has so many problems and risks associated with it and the need for vengeance should not justify its existence. Sanctioning killing for revenge motives lowers the dignity of a mature society which is ...Show more

Summary

The Death penalty is part of capital punishment administered by a state upon an individual who has committed certain crimes deemed serious by the state in question.It requires the life of the person in question be put to an end…
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Abolition of the Death Penalty essay example
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