The countries that executed the most people in 2017 the ranking world being China, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Iran. China Executing more people than the world combined.( Amnesty international). Governments continue to express ” Capital punishment reduces crime” with no real evidence.
“A lot of cases were waved through with no evidence, or insufficient evidence, resulting in a lot of miscarriages of justice issuing the death penalty arbitrarily destroys families and lives”. The different stakeholders I will be analysing are the SPC, Jintao Liu and Amnesty International. There seem to be a 2 main viewpoint in the situation Absolutist and relativist.
There are concepts of authoritarianism and liberalism.The first stakeholder In this issue I will be analysing is the Supreme court specifically Ni Shouming, the court’s spokesman. Shouming defends the death sentence “as it is necessary to protect the state and the people, and says conditions are not yet ripe for its abolishment” said Ni Shouming (Reuters).The country attempts to reduce the number of executions by reducing the penalty on some crimes but think it is necessary to imply it when murder or drug use occurs. It will eventually be reduced in terms of its use, but not during this period of time.
Though they see it necessary to reduce the number of crimes held with the death penalty to do this “a draft amendment to China’s criminal law was submitted to the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress that would remove a further nine crimes from the list of capital crimes”. ( The Diplomat) . The reason for the so many crimes having the consequence of capital punishment is due to, Political philosopher Shang Yang (390-338 BCE) known for his of advocating of a very strong Judicial system.
He wanted to create an ideal society and applied the most harsh judgements on even the smallest of crime. The logic behind this was to instill fear within society so crime rates stay low due to the punishments they will receive. Having such a system and keeping it for thousands of years is probably whats has made China use it so much because it is hard to continuously change it systems.The public has no real say in the matter due to China enforcing a variation of Authoritarianism where the state take all decisions in the judgment of whether they receive capital punishment. However even the public according to (Chinese Daily) agrees with the government, it reports “The majority of the public could not accept that some murderers could go free after 10 years’ imprisonment.” The implication of China continuing to use the death penalty has been rough as reported by the Reuters ” following media reports exposing a string of wrongful convictions concealed by investigators” However the biggest influence being the backlash by so many international communities causing to take action to some degree.
(Reuters). There seems to be an Absolutist based viewpoint as they see commiting a range of crimes with mainly 1 outcome , Capital Punishment.The Second stakeholder I will be analysing is the local perspective of a Jintao Liu an activist a beijing based lawyer who holds a perspective against china’s use of the death penalty. He holds this perspective because he personally believes ” For China to be executing so many people shows that the Chinese government is abusing the use of the death penalty” he further states ” The power to review the death penalty cases lies with the provincial high courts, but they aren’t rigorous enough “. He as a criminal lawyer who dealt with these cases before no longer believes in the use of the death penalty as “A lot of cases were waved through with no evidence, or insufficient evidence, resulting in a lot of miscarriages of justice issuing the death penalty arbitrarily destroys families and lives”.
This being his individual perspective. Being influenced the way the penalty has been issued the effect has caused him to have this view on capital punishment. The state being “irresponsible” has made him think Capital punishment is wrong because of the way it is being used. Furthermore he would support the use of capital punishment but due the way it is being used very loosely he states “I hope that they will be able to reduce the use of the death penalty, I think it is necessary to imply but if it is to be used in this matter, I believe it is wrongful because human lives are not to play with”. His perspective has added fuel to the fire, he further articulates “The government will be forced into a position where it is treating its own people as the enemy.
For example Citizens protested at China’s decision to execute a Filipino man convicted of drug smuggling after flurry of public appeals for clemency.The second stakeholder in this case is and who hold a view against China’s capital punishment is, Amnesty international, a London based NGO that focuses on Human rights. They as an organisation have the perspective that capital punishment “violates the most fundamental human right and the right to life and right to live free from torture ( which may include organ harvesting) . It is the ultimate cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment.” Specifically Salil Shetty, Secretary General of Amnesty International overlooks all publications and public publishing of Amnesty international ( Amnesty International) They firstly argue using the death penalty does not deter crime.The first example of this is, “In 2003 in Canada, 27 years after the country abolished the death penalty the murder rate had fallen by 44 per cent since 1975” the main argument they carry is how countries repeatedly cite how using the death penalty is an attempt to reduce crime rates, but by evidence that is not true.
They secondly argue how the countries are not transparent about the issue, they bring attention to china especially how information about the death penalty, such as the annual number of executions, is classified as a state secret. They then further prove this by stating how in china in 2015 the published amount of execution were 2,447 but their very own reports state their estimate is roughly 20,929. The reason Amnesty International holds this perspective is because the death penalty violates the fundamental human right which by the UN is stated as ” The right to life”.
They do not support the use of the death penalty as it is used against the most unaware in society. They state the highest use of the death penalty is against ( In no particular order) “poor, ethnic and religious minorities, and people with mental disabilities”. The second influence for their perspective is how some governments use capital punishments and “unfair trials are provided and there is always a risk of “executing an innocent person is ever present when the death penalty is carried out, it is final and irreversible”. The same perspective is held by the chinese based Professor and Lawyer as stated above. Another influence on their perspective has been the US one main reasons Amnesty International was started, “150 US prisoners sent to death row have later been exonerated” They not only believe that capital punishment is a violation of human rights but mistakes can be made within the human process of judging as shown piece of evidence above. The implication of its perspective being, “In December 2007, the UN General Assembly – the UN’s highest political body – voted 104 to 54 for a resolution on a moratorium on executions “with a view” to total abolition of the death penalty” the impact of this resolution is the international initiative that emerged from regional developments that have embraced the campaign to end capital punishment.
Europe has emerged as a virtually death penalty-free area and a leader in campaigning for abolition. In my personal opinion, I am against the use of Capital punishment . I want to approach this situation form a scientific standpoint and rationally. From the given information there are range of reason why crimes are committed.
For example substance abuse can happen for a lack of understanding, socio economic situation and a range of other reasons. Firstly killing the person responsible for whatever crime they did do, does not bring happiness to whoever or whatever is affected, but the cycle of pain will continue if they are killed. Secondly based on the given evidence I do not trust other humans to make decision of live or death, as told “the death penalty is given during even when there is a lack of evidence the sentence is still issued” firstly this is a great irresponsibility. Human lives are not to play with. What I essentially am trying to say it has to be looked at from the standpoint of a relativist, because unless we fully understand behaviour we cannot weigh out the what something might cause someone to do something and instead of just having an authoritarian system it should be utilitarian because one person’s perspective limits us to develop our opinion because we only see things from one aspect.I personally have this viewpoint because I have had my mindset changed when I come to understanding things better, I would like to think I follow the scientific method and so when I am presented with this theory I believe it should be tested before we make decisions.
This course changed my outlook by making me understand how perspective on thing can influence other so much. For example the documentary we