Does Capital Punishment Reduce Crime?

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Capital punishment, also known as death penalty, means the infliction of death for certain crimes, which are often called capital crimes. For most crimes committed the punishment is a sentence of time in jail or execution. However, the death penalty is a very contentious issue in some cultures and which most of time is in debate and is the most questionable punishment. Is it morally right? Is it effective in deterring crime, primarily murders? Whether or not if it is moral or not, in this following research you can find information that would help you analyze this type of punishment and its effectiveness of reducing crime.


Chapter 1: Capital Punishment: Definition and Antecedents
Chapter 2: Theories of Punishment: The Rightness and Effectiveness of Capital Punishment Chapter 3: Capital Punishment: A way to reduce crime?
3.1 Arguments for Capital Punishment
3.2 Arguments against the Morality of Capital Punishment



Capital Punishment has been a subject of controversy, since there are arguments for and against it, and several problems and criticisms too regarding to this issue. Opponents of the death penalty argue that it has led to irreversible of injustice, that life imprisonment is an effective substitute, and that it violates the criminal's right to life. Supporters believe that the penalty is justified for murderers by the principle of retribution, that life imprisonment is not an equally effective deterrent, and that the death penalty affirms the right to life by punishing those who violate it in the most strict form. So long time ago, there has been always the question of whether or not this type of punishment is effective reducing the crime rate. To determine it there are some points we should analyze and take into consideration.

Chapter 1: Capital Punishment: Definition and Antecedents
Capital punishment, also called the death penalty, is the act of putting or sentencing a convicted criminal to death as punishment for capital crimes or capital offences committed. Back to history, the death penalty has existed as long as humans have existed. The quote "an eye for an eye" is found in the Bible. In the middle ages, public humiliation and imprisonment were appropriate punishments for all crimes, and death penalty for all murders. Nowadays, capital punishment it is applied as punishment for premeditated murder, espionage, treason, or as part of military justice.

In some countries sexual crimes, such as rape, adultery and sodomy, carry the death penalty, as do religious crimes such as leaving formally one's religion. In addition, there are countries that consider drug traffic a capital offence, and people involved with those illegal actions are sentenced to the death penalty. For example, in China human traffic and serious cases of corruption are punished by the death penalty. In militaries around the world, courts-martial have imposed death sentences for offenses such as cowardice, desertion, and insubordination.

Chapter 2: Theories of Punishment: Rightness and Effectiveness of Capital Punishment There are three major theories as to when and why punishment should be meted out. These three theories are: the Retributive or Deserts Theory; the Utilitarian or Results Theory; and Restitution or Compensation Theory. These three theories can give us a clearer point of view on whether or not should capital punishment be applied, and finally, based on this, one can analyze if capital punishment deters or not crime, in other words if it is effective or not. The first theory, the Retributive or Deserts Theory, is the oldest theory of punishment. It states that punishment should be given only when it is deserved. The retributivist theory is concerned with the past and not the future, which means that punishment is imposed not in order to accomplish anything, but because of a crime, and just that....
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