Capital punishment refers to the punishment that is administered to criminals who have committed capital punishment. This is part of criminal justice system in the United States and it aims at preventing other people from doing the same crimes. The criminals who are contemned to face capital punishment are executed by the state officials. Those who carry the capital punishment are required to be legally approved and those being punished to have been proven guilty beyond any doubt. It punishment varies from state to state; in some states capital punishment is carried out using lethal injection while in other it is firing squad administer the punishment. Across the world, there has been a debate raging on this topic. Some people support capital punishment while others oppose it. This paper supports capital punishment and as such, the stand of the paper is that those who commit capital crime should be executed as a way of punishing them.
Carrying out a capital punishment is cheaper than life imprisonment. Different states set apart some amount of money for prisons and there is always a debate about financing prisons because tax payers don’t believe that their money should be used to keep people in prisons. This section of people will support capital punishment because they will have dealt with a hardcore criminal and they will not have to pay for the cost he/she will incur while sitting in prison their whole life. Capital punishment is believed to deal with evil people in the society and keeping them in prison with tax payer’s money might even enable a prison break where this person might go and carry out the same crime. The hunt for the perpetrator will cost more state money as they try to re-arrest this criminal (Mitchell, Jonathan F.).
Capital punishment increases the respect for law and order. The society has grown to place blame and arguments on different people or a system but the wrong doer ever hardly places blame on themselves and most time they think that the judgment is unfair. Take for example a person that has been charged with murder. Deep down in their heart of hearts they believe that the other person led to this and that they are to blame for the current situation. Very few people plead guilty to planning a murder even if that was their intention all along. Others will blame their childhood, their upbringing or the way society has treated them in the past. Very few individuals found guilty of murder admit that they are wrong or their families feel that they deserve the punishment. This goes to show how much people disregard the law and don’t see the reason for order. Moral accountability is on the decline and people don’t want to admit their wrongdoings or the moral order of admitting that they are wrong and to seek forgiveness from the afflicted. Human order requires that people respect life in the first place and murders don’t when they commit the crime. Not admitting that they are wrong is admitting that they do not respect life or its sanctity (Madeira).
However, it is an accepted fact that one of the principle uses of punishment in the criminal justice system is retribution. Criminals and potential criminals should be made aware of the consequences of their actions, sending a strong message that their actions would not be tolerated. In the interest of justice, it has been argued that courts must impose punishments that are commensurate with given crimes so as to reflect the public’s abhorrence of these crimes. However, the death penalty by itself is the most blatant breach of the right to life. It has been described as the ultimate, irreversible denial of human right. It is a paradox that for justice to be enforced, justice is denied (Aclu.org, Aclu.org).
In conclusion, as discussed above capital punishment has more positive effects than negative effects. Capital punishment leads to people respecting law and order. If criminals were not executed then many people will break the law and killing will become the norm in the society. Execution deters many people from committing capital punishment and hence the society is more peaceful and has law abiding citizens. Additionally, the state saves a lot of money that would have been used to take care of those people who committed capital punishment in terms of litigation. Through execution, the state has no more costs to incur in terms of helping the capital offender in litigation. This when compared to life imprisonment saves money for the government since the cost of litigation in life imprisonment is less than litigation costs in capital punishment.
Aclu.org, Aclu.org. “The Case against the Death Penalty.” American Civil Liberties Union, 2017, https://www.aclu.org/other/case-against-death-penalty?redirect=case-against-death-penalty.
Madeira, Jody Lynee. Killing McVeigh: The Death Penalty and the Myth of Closure. New York: New York University Press, 2012. Print.
Mitchell, Jonathan F. “Death Penalty Commentary Series Capital Punishment and the Courts.” Harvard Law Review Forum, vol 130, no. 269, 2017, pp. 269-275.