Capital Punishment: Pursuing a Just and Decent Society
I am going to argue that, in order to pursue a just and decent society, the institution of capital punishment must be compulsory. (It is important to note that I am arguing for the mere concept of the death penalty, not the actual way it is administered.) In order to do so, I will first define what I consider to be a just and decent society. I will then proceed to give and explain my two primary arguments in support of capital punishment, which are retributivism and deterrence. I will then consider and reply to possible objections to my argument.
Before I defend my argument, I want to first briefly highlight how capital punishment is instituted in the United States of America. There are 35 states (along with the U.S government and military) that incorporate the death penalty, while there are 15 states that do not.
In the United States, capital punishment is applied almost exclusively for the crime of murder. Since the death penalty was re-instated in 1976, no one has ever been executed for a crime other than murder. For those states that do have the death penalty, lethal injection is the primary method of execution, although certain states have back up methods (Death Penalty Information Center). The matter of actually deciding to execute someone is a very extensive process, of which I will not go into detail.
In order to argue for my thesis, I will first define what I consider a just and decent society. In order for a society to be just, it must be morally right and even more so fair. A society gains the label of being fair by adamantly promoting and enforcing justice. In order to impose justice, there must be equitable...