From the September, 2002 issue of Touchstone

Capital Crime & Punishment by J. Daryl Charles

Capital Crime & Punishment

Reflections on Violating Human Sanctity

by J. Daryl Charles

Among Western nations there is a generally growing sentiment in favor of abolishing the death penalty. This sentiment, it should be noted, is more disposed simply to view the death penalty in unqualified terms as cruel, barbaric, and unsuited to enlightened contemporary culture than it is to wrestle with the complexities of public policy and the meaning of criminal justice—e.g., what is just, what punishments are proportionate, which categories of criminals should be permanently removed from civil society, what sorts of crimes are heinous and worthy of ultimate sanctions, what obligation the governing aut . . .


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