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Cruel and Unusual: Should Capital Punishment Hurt?
Executions should be painful.
Pain could be used to differentiate the application of the death penalty depending on the crime committed. Currently, different offenses warrant the death penalty, yet all criminals sentenced to death receive virtually the same punishment.
Painful executions will be a more effective punishment of the offender.
Painful methods of execution will serve as a better deterrence for potential offenders than painless methods.
Painful executions would be easier and cheaper.
Capital punishment is often justified by pointing out that the convict has forfeited their basic
right to life
. If they have forfeited this right then they have also forfeited the right to bodily integrity. Thus the government is free to execute them in any way.
If the infliction of pain becomes acceptable in the case of criminals, it is more likely to be seen as acceptable in other forms and the resurgence of such cruel acts becomes more likely.
Painful executions harm innocent people more than conventional capital punishment.
Painful executions threaten the existence of capital punishment, as they will further ignite activists.
The perception of pain is subjective and can vary, hence it would be difficult to enforce a consistent and identical punishment in all cases.
Torture is prohibited in the United States by the
, which prohibits a death penalty that is unnecessarily "cruel" for the sake of inflicting pain - and, on top of that, "unusual"
in the sense that
it goes against long-standing and accepted practices.
Painful executions equal torture and are therefore not acceptable.
Capital punishment prevents the executed person from doing greater harm. Inflicting additional harm on them does not change that basic equation and is therefore unwarranted.
A painful execution, which can be regarded as torture, damages the nation's international reputation.
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