Capital Punishment: Reasons for Implementation

Essay by keriseA-, May 2006

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Capital punishment (death penalty) is defined as the judicially ordered execution of a prisoner who has been convicted for a serious crime, such as murder, drug trafficking etc. Some methods of capital punishment include hanging, lethal injection, death by firing squad etc. Singapore supports the death penalty.

The capital punishment is controversial as some people believe that even murderers or drug traffickers have a right to life, and thus the state has no right to execute them. However, I disagree with that point of view as I support capital punishment.

Firstly, I support capital punishment as I believe in lex talionis, which is Latin for "a life for a life". Since a murderer has killed an innocent person, it is only right that the murderer should be executed in order to bring peace of mind to the victim's family and the general public. The murderer has caused a great deal of grief to the family and friends of the victim or victims and the only way justice could be served is for the criminal to die.

For the person to simply go to jail seems unfair, as there they will eat three meals a day, get to watch cable television, and befriend other inmates. Just as the virtuous deserve rewards in proportion to their good deeds, murderers deserve punishment proportionate to their evil deeds (i.e. execution).

John Locke's famous argument also states that when a person commits a crime, his rights are forfeited. It is thus justifiable to take away a criminal's right to freedom (by jailing him), and it will therefore also be justifiable to execute a criminal as he has forfeited his right to freedom.

Capital punishment also ensures the safety of other members of society as it removes dangerous murderers from society and ensures...