Is Capital Punishment Justified?

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Is Capital Punishment Justified?

Although capital punishment has been abolished in the UK since 1965, some people still firmly believe that it should be brought back.  In many countries the death penalty is still enforced, although it has been scientifically proven that the death penalty does not have a greater effect on the reduction of homicides than life imprisonment.

In the 18th century the death penalty was never applied as widely as the law provided, due to procedures adopted to moderate the harshness of the law.  Many offenders who committed capital crimes were pardoned, usually on the condition that they agreed to de transported to America.  In the early 1900’s the death penalty was scarcely used.  The parliamentary system for capital punishment created dissatisfaction as it led to some executions that the public viewed as unjustified, while other types of murder escaped the death penalty because of the method used to commit the crime.  In particular, poisoners were not subject to the death penalty but if a gun was used the person would be liable to execution.

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The main arguments for capital punishment being brought back are the deterrence theory, stating that the potential murderer would think twice before victimising a person if he new he would die if he were to be caught.  The protection idea states that a convicted murderer would be set free after a life sentence of 15 years and go on to murder again.  The last and most cold-blooded, is that it makes economic sense to execute the murderer rather than be in prison wasting tax-payers money.

A survey conducted for the UN in 1996 on the death penalty and ...

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