[Letters] Capital Punishment should be abolished!

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[Letters] Capital Punishment should be abolished!

Korea is one of the few countries that still practices capital punishment. Death penalty supporters insist it should continue because of a need for crime prevention and the realization of a just society, to name a few. But it has many shortcomings.

The first of all, capital punishment does not deter crime possible murder or future criminals as much as you might expect. Death penalty supporters believe that executing murders will decrease the crime rate by causing other potential murderers to abstain from killing. But this is not true: Most criminals who commit murders do not expect to be caught. What’s worse is that it may actually cause an increase in the number of homicides, according to some research. For example, when Delaware State (America) reinstated the death penalty in 1961, the homicide rates increased. The case is no different in our nation. The number of 1997’s homicide cases was 789 but one year after the execution, the number of homicide case increased to 966.

Second, death penalty can infringe on citizens’ right to life even if they are brutal criminals. Even though criminals commit horrific crimes, they still are members of our society. Amnesty International opposes the death penalty as a violation of the right to life. And also many religious leaders, groups and human rights groups around the world strongly opposed to capital punishment. They insist death penalty is just another homicide and revenge by the justice.

Capital punishment is a hot issue in today’s society. There are strong arguments both for and against it. But there are many undeniable shortcomings to it, including the failure of crime prevention, invasion of human rights, not to mention a possibility of misjudgment and abuse for political purpose. So instead of relying on death penalty to achieve justice in our society, we batter resort to other solutions like reformation of criminals, life imprisonment without parole and rehabilitations.

by Shin Yu-na Student at Dongguk University
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