Should Capital Punishment be completely abolished?

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Should Capital Punishment be completely abolished?

Capital Punishment, which is also known as the Death Penalty, is the execution of a convicted criminal, as a punishment for capital crimes, or capital offences.  Almost all European and Pacific Area states have abolished Capital Punishment.  However, most of the democracies in America, Asia and Africa continue to use it.  The death penalty is normally employed in cases of premeditated murder, for military justice, treason, espionage, or in some countries rape, sodomy and adultery.  In the year 2006, China carried out at least 1,010 executions, although sources suggest the actual figure is more likely to be between 7,500 and 8,000.

My view on Capital Punishment is that murder by the state is exactly the same as the murder committed by the criminal.

“The murder that is depicted as a horrible crime is repeated in cold blood, remorselessly” (Beccaria, C. de Traité des Pétits et des Peines, 1764)

One of the main reasons cited for the use of Capital Punishment is that it acts as a deterrent to crimes.  In Britain between 1900 and the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939, the situation was carefully analysed.  The results showed that while the Death Penalty was a strong deterrent to premeditated murder, it was a very weak deterrent to domestic murders (crimes of passion) As Capital Punishment only acts as a deterrent, when the crime is planned, and the majority of murders are crimes of passion.  This goes some way in proving that Capital Punishment is not an effective deterrent against murder.

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Some would argue that money used to fund the imprisonment of criminals, could be put to better use such as caring for the old and sick.  Although I believe this is true, justice should not be thought of in financial terms solely. It is wrong for us to say that just because it would save us money it would be better to apply the death penalty.  For the law to be just it must be fair, which means respecting the human right to life.

Punishment for treason may also be abused by repressive states, to get rid ...

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