The Two Different Cases Regarding Capital Punishme Essay

This essay has a total of 653 words and 4 pages.

The Two Different Cases Regarding Capital Punishment

The Two Different Cases Regarding Capital Punishment

Maria Hall
English 112

Thesis : In principle a case can be made on moral grounds both supporting and
opposing capital punishment.

Two different cases can be made. One is based on justice and the nature of a
moral community. This leads to a defense of capital punishment. The second is
based on love and the nature of an ideal spiritual community. This leads to a
rejection of capital punishment.

JUSTICE AND THE NATURE OF MORAL COMMUNITY

A central principal of a just society is that every person has an equal right to
"life, liberity, and happiness." Within that, an arguement for capital
punishment forms along the following lines: some acts are so evil and so
destructive of a community that they void the right of the perpetrator to life.
A community founded on moral principals has specific requirements. The right to
belong to a community is not unconditional. The privilege of living and
pursuing the good life in society is not certain. The essential reason on which
community is built requires each citizen to honor the rightful claims of others.
The precious live in a moral community must be so highly honored that those who
do not honor the life of others void their own right to membership. Those who
violate the personhood of others, especially if this is done persistently as a
habit must pay the ultimate price. This must be done for the sake of the
community which was violated. We can debate whether some non-lethal alternative
is a suitable substitute for the death penalty. But the standard of judgment is
whether the punishment fits the crime and if it honors the nature of the moral
community.

LOVE AND AN IDEAL SPIRITUAL COMMUNITY

Christian live, is unconditional. It does not depend on the worthiness or value
of those to whom it is directed. It is persistent in seeking the good of others
regardless of whether they return the favor or even deserve to be treated well
on the basis of their own wrongdoing. An ideal community would be made up pf
free and equal citizens devoted to a balance between individual needs and the
advancement of common good. Communal life would be based on mutual love in
which equality of giving and receiving was the social practise. Everyone would
contribute to the best of ability.

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