Arguments FOR the Death Penalty

1.) Incapacitation of the criminal. 

Execution permanently removes the worst criminals from society and is safer for prison guards, fellow inmates and the rest of us (in the event of an escape) than long term or permanent incarceration.

It is self evident that dead criminals cannot commit any further crimes either in prison or after escaping from it. (Click here for a list of inmates who have been released or escaped and then murdered again.

2.) Cost 

Money is better spent on tax, the old, young and sick rather than the long term imprisonment of murderers, rapists etc.

However in the USA the cost of executing someone over giving them life in prison is often higher.  Cases with the death penalty is thought to cost $1.26 million.

3.) Retribution. 

Execution is a very real punishment rather than some form of “rehabilitative” treatment, the criminal is made to suffer in proportion to the offence. Whether there is a place in a modern society for the old fashioned principal of “an eye for an eye” is a matter of personal opinion.

Retribution is seen by many as a reason for favoring the death penalty.

It is also felt by many families of murder victims to be a strong reason for witnessing the execution of their loved one’s murderer, in states that allow this, as it provides closure for them. 

4.) Deterrence. 

Does the death penalty deter? It is difficult to be certain whether it does or doesn’t.  It is certainly not used as a deterrent by individual states, but rather, purely as a punishment.
In most states, executions are a very rare occurrence.


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