THE ETERNAL DEBATE

2 03 2009

 

imagesDuring the last days, probably because of the murder of Marta del Castillo, the debate about life imprisonment has been rekindled and I think there are a couple of issues that should be taken into account.

To start with, crimes could be grossly classified into two big groups: those that are against people’s integrity and those that are not, and to my mind, punishment should be connected with the fault. For example, someone who kills another person, or a robber using any weapon or violence in order to get the loot or someone who drives over the speed limits, shows no respect for human life, and even if it sounds quite excessive, he or she should be treated in the same way. The harder the punishment is, the more the people will think about committing the crime. Moreover, in some way, this lack of pressure on punishment is one of the biggest problems in Justice. You don’t always pay dearly for mistakes.

Another argument used by opponents of life imprisonment is the fact that this measure goes against the spirit of any system of justice, which is to achieve social rehabilitation of the criminals. Well, I totally disagree. Life imprisonment is not to punish people who have done something wrong, but to protect society. There are people who could go to any lengths to get what they want, so the only way to protect people is to keep these individuals out of the streets.

That’s because, as far as I am concerned, it could be a solution that governments should not reject this right from the start.

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