Death Penalty: An Inhumane Act
A basic fundamental human right is the right to life. Laws in many countries protect this right. Nations around the world are shunning the use of the death penalty to punish capital offences. Human rights activist are of the opinion that this form of castigation is an infringement on an individual’s right to life. It is inhumane, cruel and degrading. However, there is no worldwide consensus against the use of capital punishment. Some states around the world still carry out executions. Dieter writes that capital punishment still takes place in China. Powerful countries like the US, also execute offenders on a regular basis.
With the current judicial apparatus and the advanced prison systems, the use of the death penalty has lost its place in today’s society. There is overwhelming evidence in support of capital punishment being inhumane. Convicted people spend extremely long and torturous time on death row; this in itself is vindictive and unusual punishment. According to Swartz, rehabilitation through incarceration should replace executions. Aberrations do occur when handing out the death sentence. One critical error of capital punishment is that of executing an innocent person since an execution is irrevocable. Warden points out the fact that the justice system has condemned dozens of innocent people, only for evidence not presented in trials to emerge later and avert the executions.
The death penalty was the chastisement for very serious crimes in the past. Comparing the magnitude of some offences like drug trafficking, the death penalty is brutal and unnecessary. In the archaic age, executions were a tool used for retributive purposes. The justice system is now moving towards a restorative structure. Judicial retribution has not succeeded in reducing violent crime in the society. Studies in the United States show that states that do not carry out the death penalty record lower numbers of murders, than those that practice capital punishment.
The execution of convicted culprits is no longer tolerable. There are mechanisms to eliminate the most dangerous criminals from society while preserving their right to life. High security correctional facilities should hold these offenders. There is no justification to execute offenders in order to provide the necessary protection to society. Warden points out that there is nothing humane about capital punishment it as a disgrace to civilization.