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Thursday, 31 August 2017

The Death Penalty?


What is your view on capital punishment? I am not sure where I stand on this issue. I am going to write out reasons why some may support it and others may go against it.

Pros: Capital punishment will get rid of horrible criminals who don’t deserve to live. People who commit atrocities such as murder or rape should not be allowed back into the community. It is not right for tax payers to have to pay for nasty criminals’ life sentences. The UK criminal system is too lax on criminals and pretty much gives them a slap on the wrist; a life sentence means 25 years; and prisoners are often let out early for good behaviour. Look at the cases of Stephen Lawrence and Jamie Bulger. Horrible crimes were committed against those poor boys but the men who commit them are being protected by the system. DNA analysis and technology could ensure that innocent people are not wrongly convicted.

Cons: Does killing a killer make you as bad as the killer? How do we define who ‘deserves’ to be killed and who doesn’t? What is ‘severe’ crime? What about those who get put on death row and then turn out to be innocent? Is killing dangerous criminals really going to stop crimes from being committed? If we value human rights then doesn’t that mean that no one has the right to take anyone’s life? Criminals are people too. People can change and reform. A convicted rapist may repent and change their ways twenty years later. We should forgive and forget, rather than punish and go tit-for-tat. If they serve their time then that’s their punishment; prison is no picnic, and they should just serve their time and then be gone. The death penalty also costs tax payers money.

Neither view is wrong to me; both have their fair points. Less than half of Brits want to bring back capital punishment.


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