Capital punishment is a disgusting example of how stupid, ignorant and lazy our American society is. Society punishes victims (yes, "victims," of our corrupt system) for its own mistakes. It is a punishment that does not fit the crime because in most circumstances the "crime" was destined to happen, considering everything (and I would like to emphasize on the word "everything") that an individual has been through. If people are a product of their environment, then they shouldn't be punished for something that was bound to happen.
The reasons for capital punishment, or any punishment for that matter are; the idea that pain is necessary to prevent future crime, to prevent the general population who have not committed crimes from doing so, and or to cure criminal patients through treatment. Punishment is just not only when it aims at redeeming the person being punished, but also when it is a sacrifice to the common good.
Striking out to hurt what hurts us is a natural impulse. It is what makes us kick the table leg when we stub our toe. In the words of the Old Testament: "When one man strikes another and kills him, he shall be put to death. It shall be done to him as he had bestowed on to others; fracture for fracture, eye for eye, tooth for tooth." Unfortunately, we base this on the assumption that offenders are free to choose between committing and not committing crimes. Most of them are not. Free will? Yes, in some cases, but most of the time forces beyond human will control or determine individual behavior. Endless amounts of research have demonstrated a relationship between social conditions and crime. Psychiatrists point to subconscious forces beyond the conscious will's control that determine criminal conduct. Biologists have linked violent...