There have been cases where many mentally retarded individuals have been killed by the state. These people might have suffered a neurological defect during birth. The mental problems may make a person to do what he does not know such as killing another person as a result of his violence. Such people may not be aware of what they are doing hence should not be held accountable. It would be unfair to do this since it is not their wish to behave in this manner (Steiker, 2005). Pros of Death Penalty The victims who have gone through a lot of pain and suffering need to get justice.
This is the best way to at least put an end to their suffering though it will not totally relieve them. It acts to at least make them feel that justice has been done to them since the perpetrator has also lost his or her life just like the person whom they were close to (Ramsey, 2002). Capital punishment serves as a lesson to other people who may be tempted to commit such capital offences or are involved in such crime like murder and rape cases. They might decide to leave their ways because of the fear of undergoing through the same punishment.
For example, if the person who was sentenced to a death penalty was a close accomplice or even a member of his group, the trauma of losing him might make him retreat from crime (Ramsey, 2002). Prison is not the best way to keep such dangerous people. There have been incidences where prisoners have escaped from prison back in the society. It is obvious that such criminals will go back in the society and continue murdering and committing other crimes too. The only way is to get rid of them once to avoid such crimes.
A prisoner can also finish his sentence of many years and get released afterwards. The chances that he might go back to his criminal ways are high. The victims will also feel that the justice they deserved was not carried out in the best way. They will also live in fear for their lives since such a dangerous person may decide to kill them too (Ramsey, 2002). This is the best way to offer punishment to the perpetrators of capital crimes like murder or rape cases. Putting such an individual in the prison is not punishment at all.
In a case where a person murders another person, the only best way to punish the culprit is to take his or her life too (Ramsey, 2002). Death penalty will make the citizens to trust their judicial system. It has been believed that the justice system is sympathetic to the culprits than those who have gone through a lot of pain because of the loss of someone they loved through murder. The only better way to ensure that trust is restored in the citizens’ minds is when the judicial system offers justice in the right manner (Ramsey, 2002).
After proving a person’s guilt, it is only in order to offer justice. The modern advancement in crime technology and improvement in DNA tests, the doubts about a person’s guilt are eliminated. This means that there will be no possibility of punishing the wrong person by mistake (Ramsey, 2002). Prisons are already full with different kinds of criminals who are being rehabilitated. There are also other hard core criminals who should have been sentenced to the death penalty but are still being locked in the prison.
The result of this is a continued overpopulation in the jails. Every year, criminals who have committed capital offences like murder are being arrested and detained in these jails. This directly leads to overpopulation (Ramsey, 2002). Summary In both articles, there is the conclusion that the application of capital punishment is not something that can be considered as being definitely wrong or right. The answer is not definite and relies on several factors such as the gravity of the offence that the criminal was involved in and the past history of the individual.
However, according to Steiker (2005), there is no justifiable reason as to why life should be taken and imprisonment is the best form of punishment. On the other hand, Ramsey (2002) argues that the only best option is death penalty. Conclusion The use of death penalty is not an efficient way of punishing the perpetrators of capital offences. It is morally unacceptable to try to justify the killing since this is against the basic human rights of a person. It does not matter the crime committed since I believe there are prisons which can offer punishments that will make the criminal suffer for his actions.
The killing will not bring a change in the life of the victim. Therefore, the only best way is life imprisonment. References Lowenstein. (2001). Legal Lynching: The Death Penalty and America's Future. The American Prospect, Vol. 12, December 3, pg. 28. Ramsey, C. B. (2002). The Discretionary Power of "Public" Prosecutors in Historical Perspective. American Criminal Law Review, 39(2), 23-24. Steiker, C. S. (2005). No, Capital Punishment Is Not Morally Required: Deterrence, Deontology, and the Death Penalty. Stanford Law Review, 58(1), 52-53.