The Justifiable Use of Capital Punishment
For many centuries, capital punishment was employed by nearly all societies both to punish crime and to suppress political dissent. In my opinion, capital punishment is an exceptional measure which should not be used in a perfect society; however we do not live in a perfect society, therefore capital punishment still exists and still gives rise to endless controversy.
In this essay I will outline the most common arguments surrounding the issue of capital punishment during its history and put forth my opinion, that in most cases, society must decide upon the acceptability or unacceptability of capital punishment with reference to social, economical, and experiential factors.
Reasons Why Capital Punishment Existed in the Past
There are two main reasons why capital punishment was used as a general form of punishment before our century. One of them was a lack of development of the justice system. “Public executions were vital because there was a necessity to show that justice had been done and provide a deterrent to others. It was used as a demonstration of the ability of the social collective to defend itself and demonstrate to enemies that injury to property, rights, or other persons would not go unpunished.” (“Arguments”)
Another reason, according to the same article “Arguments” states that, “Three hundred years ago there was no media and in particularly heinous cases of murder the execution could be carried out near the scene of the crimes so that the local people could see the murderer punished, or the criminal could be gibbeted near the scene to remind people of the punishment.”
This principle of “An eye for an eye” in different forms was widely accepted by nearly all early societies when capital punishment was not such a debated issue as it is today.
Of course, there were plenty of convincing reasons why the use of capital punishment was so popular and...