Reintroducing capital punishment to the UK

Should capital punishment be reintroduced to the UK?

  • No, under any circumstances

  • Yes, for any murder

  • Yes, but only for the murder of specific members of society (eg children, police officers)


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Pete Burrett

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After another terrorist attack, I'm hearing people on social media demanding the return of capital punishment. 'An eye for an eye' is often mentioned, and retribution seems as important to some as justice or punishment.

As the barometer for the UK's thinking :) let's have the views of Yellows Forum posters.

For ease of voting, I've restricted the poll to murder, rather than treason or any other offence, but feel free to comment.
 

AbbeyOx

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tough one really. after incidents like the weekend it’s widely debated but personally don’t think it’s the answer.
the death sentence doesn’t seem to have much deterrent in the usa and you see many cases of wrongful convictions.
i reckon the whole justice system needs an overhaul though. keep prison for serious offenders and those who are a threat to the public, and not things like non payment of tv license or trivial things like that
 

Essexyellows

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I would marry the poll up to the law as it currently stands.
EG: Anyone looking at a "whole life" term should be looking at the death penalty.
Image stolen/borrowed from the most excellent "Secret Barrister" blog.
img_2661.jpg
 

Steve McAvoy

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It would certainly embellish our journey on the road to becoming ‘Great’ again. You may find yourself behind the times very quickly; no doubt the Blond liar had always believed in capital punishment and has a law ready to go as soon as elected...
 

Big Ronaldo

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With these atrocities so fresh in the mind, I wonder if it is wiser to have a period of reflection before wading in with, what is often anger fuelled rhetoric.
The death penalty was abolished in 1969 in this country and we have had many calls for it to be re-instated since.
It is all too easy to believe that capital punishment is the ultimate deterrent, but clearly, it doesn’t deter.
Desperate, deranged people will always do what they do, they don’t busy themselves worrying about the consequences. So destroying them serves no good in that sense. They are, in a sense, dead people already.

So who is the death sentence really for? Some kind of bitter-sweet revenge for the families of the slain?
Or just for good old Joe public to feel that justice has been served?
Neither of these convince me that it is worth ‘an eye for an eye.’
But freedom is a precious, beautiful thing. One that these demons, through their actions have denied others. In that, their right to freedom must be withdrawn. Perhaps permanently. They should be made to live without the luxuries or interests that freedom brings. In my opinion, Their life should be an unending colour grey, with no parole. A living death sentence.
That’s my take anyway.
 

Marked Ox

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With these atrocities so fresh in the mind, I wonder if it is wiser to have a period of reflection before wading in with, what is often anger fuelled rhetoric.
The death penalty was abolished in 1969 in this country and we have had many calls for it to be re-instated since.
It is all too easy to believe that capital punishment is the ultimate deterrent, but clearly, it doesn’t deter.
Desperate, deranged people will always do what they do, they don’t busy themselves worrying about the consequences. So destroying them serves no good in that sense. They are, in a sense, dead people already.

So who is the death sentence really for? Some kind of bitter-sweet revenge for the families of the slain?
Or just for good old Joe public to feel that justice has been served?
Neither of these convince me that it is worth ‘an eye for an eye.’
But freedom is a precious, beautiful thing. One that these demons, through their actions have denied others. In that, their right to freedom must be withdrawn. Perhaps permanently. They should be made to live without the luxuries or interests that freedom brings. In my opinion, Their life should be an unending colour grey, with no parole. A living death sentence.
That’s my take anyway.

Capital punishment is about vengence, it isn't about deterrence as it doesn't work.
 

Marked Ox

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Neither do life sentences applying that logic.

Are life sentences always put up as a reason for deterrence like capital punishment is?

It depends what you want from Prison for society really. I want rehabilitation to be at its core which it really isn't viewing from the outside.
 

Foley

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It depends what you want from Prison for society really. I want rehabilitation to be at its core which it really isn't viewing from the outside.
I agree that rehabilitation should be at the core for most prisoners.
There are some however, whose danger and the hideous ness of their crimes means that they should never be let out.
Interesting to hear Scotcheggs views
 

Essexyellows

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Are life sentences always put up as a reason for deterrence like capital punishment is?

It depends what you want from Prison for society really. I want rehabilitation to be at its core which it really isn't viewing from the outside.

I`ll agree that rehabilitation should be at the core, but there are some cases where that is inappropriate.
Those who are looking at a whole life term for example.
You then get into the ethics of should we "just lock them up for ever" , it could be argued that that is cruel as there is no chance of release/rehabilitation.
Or do we dispose of them swiftly & efficiently?

I know which I favour.
 

Sarge

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isnt the cornerstone, the bedrock of the British legal system that 'you' are innocent , until proven, beyond reasonable doubt, guilty?

rushing through (literally), life or death decisions, invariably to satisfy the bloodlust of some individuals, or to meet 'targets' of draconian uncaring governments, has proven over centuries, to not necessarily be the best way for a civilsed society to operate

If, at a later date, compelling new evidence was to surface regarding someone erroneously convicted, its not yet possible to unexecute someone after they have been executed
 

Marked Ox

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I`ll agree that rehabilitation should be at the core, but there are some cases where that is inappropriate.
Those who are looking at a whole life term for example.
You then get into the ethics of should we "just lock them up for ever" , it could be argued that that is cruel as there is no chance of release/rehabilitation.
Or do we dispose of them swiftly & efficiently?

I know which I favour.

And the person is found not to have done that crime but you've already disposed of them?
 

Manorlounger

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isnt the cornerstone, the bedrock of the British legal system that 'you' are innocent , until proven, beyond reasonable doubt, guilty?

rushing through (literally), life or death decisions, invariably to satisfy the bloodlust of some individuals, or to meet 'targets' of draconian uncaring governments, has proven over centuries, to not necessarily be the best way for a civilsed society to operate

If, at a later date, compelling new evidence was to surface regarding someone erroneously convicted, its not yet possible to unexecute someone after they have been executed
This ties in with my way of thinking.
I would rather see a review of sentencing and, in particular, the parole/early release procedures.
 

ZeroTheHero

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Absolutely not. Would be a return to the dark ages. I know some people do horrible things, but it's the mark of a stable, resilient society that it can not seek 'revenge'. Locking people up for life (and of course in some case that might/should mean 'life') may be cruel, but at least you can let them out if new evidence appears that exonerates them. Not much you can do if they're dead.
 

Essexyellows

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And the person is found not to have done that crime but you've already disposed of them?

In this day and age it is far easier to provide robust evidence. DNA, mobile phone records, vehicle ANPR, CCTV etc etc. The technology has overtaken the judicial system TBH.
 

Essexyellows

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Yes, we know Mr Essex. :) Your recent reference to 9mm bullets sort of gives it away. In sleepy Louth there was a domestic murder a few months ago. Several people thought the killer should be put to death by the state, and one, rather worryingly, volunteered to put a noose around his neck herself. Another thought execution would save us all a lot of money rather than imprisoning him for years. Sort of confirmed by own views about the death penalty.

As I said, there are those that exceed the bounds of humanity.
A one off "domestic murder" wouldn`t qualify either under current law or a proposed DP.
We are looking at "Whole life" offenders.
Easy enough to look up the list, from serial killers through to multiple child killers. People who have no place in society, no chance of rehab and just consume resources, time & effort when there are more cost effective solutions.
 

Marked Ox

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In this day and age it is far easier to provide robust evidence. DNA, mobile phone records, vehicle ANPR, CCTV etc etc. The technology has overtaken the judicial system TBH.

Still not infallible though and that person will still be disposed of.
 

Essexyellows

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= state killing. I understand your point of view. We will never agree, even over a pint or two.

Do you think it is right spending a conservative estimate of circa £38,000+ a year to keep such creatures alive? Just sat there waiting to die. I could think of people far more deserving of the investment and services.
 
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