Death Penalty: The idea of capital punishment appeals to the heart; challenges the principles of intellects and demands the validity from our legal system. But it raises a significant question “Does the death penalty serves any purpose?”
The death penalty does not takes away the life of the person tied to the fetters of rope; it takes away a little of humanity within all of us. The foundation of abolition of death penalty is underpinned by two pillars – holding what is morally and ethically correct and questioning the degree of control of the state on the human rights-the basic right to live of a human being.
Does rationale exist?
The principle on which the legal system justifies death penalty is that if a person has committed a crime, then a parallel is drawn between the degree of heinousness of the crime and how miserably the state believes that the criminal deserves. But what or who gets to decide the brutality of crime? Who gets to quantify the consequences of the crime committed? Why is that our honorable President Ram Nath Kovind gave his approval to death penalty only for those found guilty of raping girls below 12 years of age? How do you explain to the victim of acid attack or the family who went through the pain of losing their parents to horrendous of murder that their crime is less worthy of deserving the death of the assaulter? Death penalty is not deterrent to criminals. The prime motive that death penalty strives to achieve is to deter potential criminals. But no country ever saw minimization of crimes. The very idea of punishment is to let the criminal feel the pain he indicted upon someone.Which is no longer a feasible option when the person is not alive to bear the brunt of that suffering, he once incited.
Can we justify killing the soul of a human being?
One can justify the legality of capital punishment on the grounds of accountability of person’s actions. But how do we just justify killing the soul of a person? The only lesson it teaches us is that it is acceptable to kill, as long as the state is the one doing the killing. It does not render justice to victims but rather fosters vengeance. Life and death are two natural paradigms. Death is an irrevocable action. To what extent is the state justified in taking something it can never compensate for; especially if it wrongly convicts an innocent.
A system is a place for granting justice. One cannot justify a wrongdoing by taking a life just with claims of ‘noble intentions’.