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The Death Penalty: An Appropriate Punishment

1532 words - 7 pages

Capital punishment has been a punitive consequence of multiple societies in many different countries over the years. The death penalty has been witnessed in many different forms, depending on the society or culture. It is viewed as an act of justice due to its deeply embedded historical tradition. Over the centuries, many cultures have used capital punishment because it ensures the safety of society. Criminals continue to use violence as their way of solving a problem. Capital punishment deters crime rates more than anything else. The death penalty offers justice with historical tradition. According to Roger Smith, societies use capital punishment as a consequence for numerous crimes. “The ...view middle of the document...

The reason for this is because they used these public executions as a scare tactic. Some cultures used extreme forms of execution. Ancient Rome used treatment like: throwing criminals from cliffs, torturing criminals to death, feeding them to wild animals and crucifying them. As years passed, the executions became more heinous. In the Middle Ages, officials executed criminals in the following ways: public drowning, pulling their bodies apart, and burning them alive. Public executions continued to occur as the years progressed. During this time, in England and America, public hangings were the most common form of public death. And during the French revolution the guillotine was infamous for thousands of beheadings (Smith 17).
In court systems today, courts give the same type of punishment for various crimes. Differing crimes call for differing punishments. For example, when a child spills milk on the floor, an appropriate punishment dispensed by the parents would be to have the child clean up his or her mess. The child then learns consequences for misdeeds because he or she has to correct the problem. The problem in current society is the laws are too lenient and fail to appropriately punish offenders. Court systems today become too enmeshed in punishments for felony charges and disregard enforcing appropriate punishments for misdemeanors. Prisons fill rapidly causing limited space to be available for criminals of lesser crimes.
The punishment should fit the crime that was convicted. Without the accountability of our court systems, assuring offenders are punished, individuals will continue to commit crimes. However, if the punishment does not fit the crime, offenders don’t realize responsibility. Also if there is no enforced punishment for the crime committed offenders will not realize they did something wrong. For example, if the child that spilled the milk is not punished by his or her parents, then he or she will not learn to take responsibility for his or her actions. It is important for parents to grant an appropriate punishment when their child misbehaves or disregards the rules. By teaching children that there will be a punishment for misbehavior, parents are preparing them for the same response in society when a rule or law is broken, as they grow up. If an individual does not learn to take responsibility for his or her actions, especially if he or she has committed a crime, then they will not feel any remorse. If there is no remorse, then the individual will continue offending or pursuing criminal actions.
If a criminal shows remorse and pleads guilty to his charges, however, that criminal must accept the harshest punishment given by the courts. That punishment is the death penalty. If the crime committed is of a high degree, for example murder, then the death penalty should be an automatic consideration. If he pleads guilty and has been found mentally stable and competent to stand trial, then the death penalty is an appropriate...

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