Death Penalty Introduction Capital punishment is also referred to as death penalty. It is a legal process where a person is punished by death for a commited crime. Crimes that result in this form of punishment are referred to as capital crimes or capital offences…
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The death penalty is a very controversial topic mostly because it is required to punish heinous crimes such as murder, and abolishment would be seen as going soft on such crimes. This paper seeks to discuss some of the challenges / problems of death penalty and its solutions. The author in answering this question will highlight a problem, offer a solution to it and finally draw a conclusion which will basically be the author’s views. Problems of the Death Penalty Problem: Variations in Law Different states have different laws, and laws regarding death penalty vary as well. They vary in terms when the punishment can be meted, what methods should be used and the period within which they should be carried out (Sutton, 2010). It is also absurd that some countries have completely ommitted from their laws the method which should be used in carrying out the penalty. The courts have instead been granted discretion to decide the method to be used, leaving this form of punishment susceptible to abuse. Solution: Uniformity and Specificity of Laws It is important for states to have laws that more or less contain similar provisions especially with regards to topics of a controversial nature (Sutton, 2010). For instance, almost all countries in Europe have abolished these laws, based on Article 2 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union which expressly prohibits capital punishment. This goes to show that countries in this region are reading from the same script – something that other countries should strive to achieve. The laws also need to be more specific especially on the methods to be used – some countries use hanging, lethal injection, electrocution, gas chamber, and firing squads. Problem: Fitting the Crime There has been a huge debate as to whether death penalty is the proper punishment for certain crimes (Feser, 2011). The question is whether this punishment fits the crime. In most cases, convicted murderes are sentenced to death, but many critics have asked why the same punishment is not meted out against drug dealers whose crimes may have led to the death of many. Serial rapists and pedophiles are often not sentenced to death despite the unspeakable damage to women and children. Solution: Just Deserts It would be advisable for countries to determine whether the punishments meted out fit the crimes. The principle of proportionality states that the penalties should be proportionate in their severity to the gravity of the crime committed (Belrad, 2008). Problem: Failure to Exercise As previously stated, most countries contain provisions for death penalty, however most do not exercise them, thus making these provisions redundant. In most cases, these sentences are translated into life-long ones. It should be noted that there are crimes which are punished by life-long sentences. Does this mean that capital offences are reduced to the level of these offences? Solution: Exercise the Law to the Letter This problem can be solved by exercising the law to the letter because failure to do this beats the whole purpose of having laws in the first place. If it is not compulsory for the courts while meting out punishments to adhere to the laws, then why should the civilians care? The law should be enforced to its full letter while also taking into consideration its spirit. Problem: Controversy There has been a lot of debate on this form of punishment. These debates have been based on the inherent right to life.
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“Death Penalty (Identifying the Problem and Offering the Solution) Essay”, n.d. https://studentshare.org/english/1476633-death-penalty-identifying-the-problem-and-offering.
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