Social, Moral and Historical Aspects of Capital Punishment

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Capital punishment is always a delicate topic. Even though it has been introduced thousand years ago, it’s still a question that raises many issues: what is its impact on our society? Is it moral or not? Is it useful or not? Where does this practice come from? In this essay I will try to answer to these question. To begin with, it will be useful to analyze what role the capital punishment plays, or it’s supposed to play, in our society. The first purpose is to restore or maintain the security of the life, by stopping the killer to commit another murder and to avoid others becoming killers too. But, if the first task is easily and immediately achievable, the same cannot be said for the second one. In fact, if we have a quick look to the statistics of the last few years, we will discover that the murder rate in the countries that have death penalty is higher than that one in the countries that do not have death penalty. So, it seems that the fear to be executed doesn’t prevent people from committing crimes. On the contrary, this procedure could actually increase the number of crimes. In fact, with the capital punishment, whose execution is public and under the eyes of everyone, the state seems to allow, or even worst promote, forms of physical violence really high, and this could let individuals who are naturally violent to feel that life doesn’t have a lot of value. A fast and concrete example: “in West Virginia, a non death penalty state, the annual murder rate is four per 100,000 citizens, while in Virginia, which has one of the highest execution rates in the nation, the annual murder rate is six per 100,000 citizens” (William W. Wilkins, 2007). Another aspect of the capital punishment that touches the society is the cost. At t... ... middle of paper ... ...the next few years something will change. Bibliography William W. Wilkins (2007) University of Richmond Law Review Available at: http://lawreview.richmond.edu/the-legal-political-and-social-implications-of-the-death-penalty/ (Accessed on 23 April 2014) Jeffrey A. Fagan (2014) Columbia Law School Available at: https://www.law.columbia.edu/lawschool/communications/reports/summer06/capitalpunish (Accessed on 23 April 2014) Bernard Shaw (1903) Bartleby.com Available at: http://www.bartleby.com/157/6.html (Accessed 28 April 2014) Death Penalty Information Center (2014) Available at: http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org/part-i-history-death-penalty#early (Accessed 2 May 2014) The Guardian (2014) Available at: http://www.theguardian.com/news/datablog/2011/mar/29/death-penalty-countries-world (Accessed 2 May 2014)

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