The harshest and most severe form of punishment of all legal sentences is death. This is referred to as the death penalty, or ?capital punishment? in the United States. This form of punishment requires law enforcement officers to actually kill the offender. In the United States, the death penalty is currently implemented in one of five ways: firing squad, hanging, gas chamber, electrocution, or lethal injection. It has been banned in most of the other countries of the world. In the United States, however, it has become more and more commonly used as a punishment for serious offenses, mainly murder. ?Lex talionis?, as mentioned in the Bible, encourages ?an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth?. We use this principle in the legal system to justify murder through capital punishment. We have a certain privilege in our own lives but should we be allowed to decide on the rights of others as well If we find someone guilty of murder, we sentence him to death. This makes us murders ourselves. To me, that in itself makes clear the contradiction of terms that exists in capital punishment.
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