Examine the Ethical Issue on Capital Punishment and Discuss the Extent Which It Should Be Allowed.

1873 Words Aug 24th, 2011 8 Pages
Question: Examine the ethical issue on capital punishment and discuss the extent to which it should be allowed.

We live in a society where killing is deemed and known as unethical and immoral, and this is because of society’s condemnation of death. We are bounded by a set of guidelines, a social contract, and these common guidelines create boundaries – boundaries that determine how the law is formed, what is wrong and what is right, benefitting the majority of the society. By having this social contract, it enforces us to stay in within these boundaries.

The term ‘kill’ is defined as ‘causing of death to a person, animal or any living thing’. (Note that this definition does not include or suggest the intention of the killing.)
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One of the reasons would be cost. Most countries that abolished the death penalty have the life imprisonment as the next highest sentence, as a replacement. However, the cost of life imprisonment is definitely much more than death penalties. Having life imprisonment meant supporting the prisoners for life until they die and that would cost a lot more than executing them. Instead of these government funds spent on these criminals, the money is better spent on the people who deserve it more, like the elderly, the poor and the needy.

Another reason would be justice, or retribution, as others see it. Justice is given when the law punishes the criminal for what he or she has done, and it gives a sense of closure for the victim or the victim’s family. Incapacitation of criminals also makes the community a safer place to be in, as they will not have another chance to commit anymore crimes whether in or out of prison. (http://www.capitalpunishmentuk.org/thoughts.html) Capital punishment is for a good cause as it ensures the safety of the majority in a community.

The most debatable reason of all would be the deterrent effect on capital punishment. Many of the abolitionists claim that by keeping capital punishment as a law, it does not act as deterrence at all, as they claim that statistics shown that countries with the death

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