The death penalty is a great capital punishment for every human who commits heinous act towards another human being. The United States is the only Western democracy that executes offenders; other democracies decided that death penalty violates modern standards for punishment. Partly because United stands alone and partly because executions raise so many issues for any system of punishment; thus death penalty goes back to ancient times and has been used in the United States since colonial times.
Executions go back at least to the days of the idea that people who commit offenses not only murderer but many more should be put to death. “Actually being dead is no different from not being born, experience we all had before being born. In turn dying is feared because death is expected, even though death is feared because it is confused with dying”. (P.338 Isenberg)
According to Genesis 9:5-6, “Who so sheddeth a man’s blood, by man.” And in Deuteronomy 19:21, gives the phrase, “Life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.” Exodus and other books of the Old Testament call for the death of someone who commits at least 21 offenses including adultery, sodomy, blasphemy, cursing or hitting parents, homosexuality, kidnapping, murder, premarital sex, prostitution, witchcraft, and working on Sabbath. Americans today would say that someone who commits adultery engages in premarital sex, or works on the Sabbath should be executed.
It remains true that executions in ancient times were common and the usual method was stoning the offender with two witnesses. The offender would be stripped naked, tied, and pushed from a tall platform by one witness; then the second witness would stone the victim. If the offender managed to survive, the crowd watching the execution would join in the stoning. The ancient Chinese sometimes executed people by cutting away small bits of the victim’s flesh for several days.
During the Middle Ages, burning...