[Letters] The evils of capital punishment
I recently watched “The Life of David Gale.” This is a movie based on the true story of David Gale, a member of an organization against the death penalty who, himself, is wrongly executed.
The movie forces us to consider whether the death penalty is right.
Personally, I think it’s not right. The death penalty is the most barbaric law in the world.
The death penalty still exists in many countries like China or North Korea. The death penalty, which is the most barbaric law in the world, must be abolished forever because any unacceptable errors are unchangeable.
No matter how cruel the crime is, taking someone’s life is not acceptable. Even if a criminal has killed many people or committed a horrible crime, killing such a person is just a different kind of murder.
Some argue that this gives some kind of comfort to the victim’s family.
However, according to research, execution of criminal doesn’t offer any consolation or comfort to a victim’s family.
If we take a criminal’s life, there is no more distinction between us and them.
In addition, it goes against human rights which view human life as invaluable. Breaking this right means we are no longer human.
Sometimes an innocent person can be executed because of a wrong judgment, as seen in the film about David Gale.
This is very serious problem. Killing an innocent person is worse than killing a criminal. There is nothing that I can say. It is just horrible and wrong.
Nor is the law perfect. In the worst-case scenario, the death penalty can be abused by those in power.
For instance, the Korean military governments of the 1960s to 1980s abused the death penalty for their own purposes. As a result, many innocent people who cried and fought for democracy were executed by the government.
In ancient Athens, Socrates was executed by politicians who were afraid of his fame. If the death penalty is maintained, such occurrences could happen again.
The death penalty should be abolished. Some people insist it deters people from committing murder so it should be retained.
Despite its existence, homicide, regardless, continues to take place.
To prevent murder and protect innocent people from dangerous crime, we must abolish the death penalty and find another method of deterrence.
Roh Dong-hyun, Dongguk University student