In the past the methods of execution were aimed at causing the maximum suffering to the condemned person. This has been replaced by the functional methods adopted by most of the modern governments. The new approach emphasises the killing of the convicted person and not upon the suffering that results from the punishment(Bannister, 2008, p. 167). This indicates a more humane approach to the killing of convicted persons. However, killing a convict is fundamentally wrong.
Punishments serve the important function of averting the dissolution that is noticed in the moral and physical worlds. These punishments come to the notice of the public and remain fixed in their mind. Moral speeches, great truths, moving speeches and strong words cannot achieve what punishment does. In order to prevent violation of the law in the long term, it is essential to have a system of strong punishments(Beccaria, 2011, p. 9). However, the death penalty fails to achieve these objectives. The deterrent effect of such punishment is no longer accepted in the world.
When people have to live independently and in isolation, they are placed in a continuous state of war. The freedom enjoyed by such people is always in danger of being destroyed by others. This forces people to form societies that are governed by laws. These laws ensure that the rights of the people are not harmed. In order to live in a society that is subject to the rule of law, people have to forego a portion of their liberty. It is this sacrifice that provides people with a safe and peaceful life(Beccaria, 2011, p. 9).
In this manner, a depository of surrendered sacrifices is created. The total of the individual liberties constitutes the sovereignty of a country. Something more is required; namely, a defence of individual liberties against the attempts of others to take undue advantage. As such, people tend to retrieve their surrendered liberties. At the same time, individuals attempt to appropriate what belongs to