This is a tiresom debate. Millions of words have been written by millions of very bright people in a thousand countries both PRO and CON and still we have the arguments.
From a religious standpoint, no CHRISTIAN could possibly condone deliberate MURDER which is what execution is. But religionists search for ways out: the most used is that the commandment THOU SHALT NOT KILL refers to killing but NOT to capital punishnment!
Other religions, namely ISLAM, state many ways of killing people under religious legality, and it would appear from the number of suicide bombers promised Heaven that it is still believed.
My brother now deceased was an advocate of the death penalty and he was a major power in military law. When I would make an argument against capital punishment, he would say,”You have to admit that once dead, that killer isn’t going to do it again!”
He was perhaps being lugubriously humorous, but his argument is the only argument for continuing the barbarity.
Let’s look at the COST of ONE execution. If all of the killings legally taken place since the reissue of the death penalty laws are averaged in cost, it amounts to $2,200,000 per legal death!
FORGETTING our eye-for-an-eye thinking, what we couldn’t do with each $2,200,000 saved while the culprit sulks away in durance vile! Twenty-two hundred kids could enter college! A thousand preventive brain operations could be paid for!
The debate above is to look at the death penalty as a deterrent. I find it impossible to go to any interviews of killers and find a fear of the death penalty. Many will pretend certain beliefs if they think they may get a change of sentence, but most swagger and like the notoriety of facing death.
Because WE are upset by the horror of hanging, shooting, and beheading, and other extreme methods of death penalties, we now try to ease-out the death of the perpetrator by slipping him a pill or two and an injection. Do you think the mind-set of dying in that fashion will stop one from banging away if he wants to kill someone?
PROBABLY two hundred years ago when extreme death penalties were often done by pulling the person apart with four horses, or hanging him, resuscitating him, then cutting out his bowels and burning them in front of the still alive victim, then pulling him apart…THAT system as a deterrent I would think WOULD work!
Or, burning to death. Think a bit about being chained to a post and faggots about your feet, and the roar of flames as you leave this world! THAT punishment I’m certain made many think nefore killing…but oddly enough, that punishemnt was decreed by the Church, as supposedly FIRE did not “spill blood”, not allowed by the Church.
Let us look at the statistics: in all countries that have had no death penalty for at least a decade, the murder rate per population has decresed by fifty to seventy percent. Notably in France, where the stark significance of the guillotine should certinly have scared potential killers, the absence of the death penalty has cut the number of murders per thousand inhabitants by 70% and most of the present crimes are within certain ethnic groups(Arabs,etc.)
One part of the so-called “deterrent” system of ritually preparing a person and killing him or her, has been the effect upon the “executioners”. If that is a deterrent, the death penalty, think what helping to kill another human being does to the ones who do it, whether that be by electricity, hanging, the needle, or other ways(one stste still shoots the culprit with a large caliber rifle mounted on a vise). The mental illness of executioners is legion.
BUT, we stray! The debate is does the death penalty deter killers?
The answer is that it cetainly DETERS the 5% who are caught, convicted, and executed(sometimes 25 years later!) But the uncaught 95% murderers continue to KILL, some becoming serial killers who enjoy playing the game of staying free and killing, and if caught, have the loophole of murderous insanity to save them from the death penalty, which did not deter nor even occur to them as any threat..
Let us as sane Americans join the sane world of no death penalty and when we catch a killer, make him work like a peon for a very long incarderated life!