Personally, I believe that capital punishment should not be accepted. Whilst there is a possibility that the punishment will deter people from committing crimes, it is not right to allow a practice that could potentially result in an innocent person being executed. People have been handed lengthy prison sentences, only to be found innocent and released years later. Unlike a prison sentence, the death penalty is irreversible. Despite the precautions taken, there is still room for human error in the justice system. This fact should be accepted and the death penalty abolished to avoid the loss of human lives.
Even if the fact that there is a risk of an innocent being executed isn’t considered, the death penalty hardly seems logical. As explained on the anti-capital punishment poster: the death penalty kills people, as a punishment for killing other people because killing people is wrong. To me, this is a textbook case of ‘do as I say, not as I do’. If people working in law enforcement wish to send the message that killing people is wrong, I don’t believe that killing murderers is an effective way to send the message. As Mahatma Gandhi once said:
“An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.”
In addition to this, capital punishment would have negative psychological effects on the prisoner in the days leading up to his/her death. Most prisoners facing execution in the near future are aware of the time and date of their planned execution (http://people.howstuffworks.com/lethal-injection.htm). I believe that having prisoners in cells counting away the last remaining hours of their lives would lead to feelings of deep despair. There have been cases where prisoners have converted to religion, or realized the severity of their crime whilst waiting to be executed. If prisoners can make this realisation whilst in a state of despair, they should be able to realise whilst serving a prison sentence. This will result in prisoners having the chance to become positive members of society; a chance they would not have if they were sentenced to be executed.