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Justice in Retribution The American government operates in the fashion of an indirect democracy Citizens live under a social contract whereby individuals agree to forfeit certain rights for the good of the whole Punishments for crimes against the state are carried out via due process guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment The use of capital punishment is decided by the state which is legal in thirty-seven states It is a moral imperative to protect the states rights to decide their own position on the use of capital punishment Capital punishment is a method of retributive punishment as old as civilization itself Both the Greeks and the Romans invoked the death penalty for a wide variety of offenses Socrates and Jesus were perhaps the most famous people ever condemned for a capital crime in the ancient period Hammurabis Code a code of laws developed by the king of one of the first empires dates back from the third or second millennium before Christ This code claims that retribution an eye for an eye and a life for a life is justice In Anglo-American law the death penalty has been a customary response to certain kinds of offenses The movement in America to have the death penalty declared unconstitutional received paramount attention during the landmark case of Furman v Georgia rendered on June 29 1972 which declared the death penalty cruel and unusual punishment No executions took place between 1967 and 1977 Bedau 1992 However after a supreme court decision in 1975 Gregg v Georgia which stated capital punishment did not violate the Eighth Amendment executions commenced again under state supervision Should capital punishment be continued Retribution is a justification for capital punishment because it is an injustice to tolerate criminal behavior such as murder The case for capital punishment can best be understood by examining the oppositions arguments against capital punishment Opponents of capital punishment say the death penalty does not deter crime and is
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