Capital punishment or the death penalty is a legal process whereby a person is put to death by the state as a punishment for a crime. The judicial decree that someone be punished in this manner is a death sentence, while the actual process of killing the person is an execution. Crimes that can result in a death penalty are known as capital crimes or capital offences. The term capital originates from the Latin capitalis, literally "regarding the head" (referring to execution by beheading).
Capital punishment has, in the past, been practised by most societies (one notable exception being Kievan Rus); currently 58 nations actively practise it, and 97 countries have abolished it (the remainder have not used it for 10 years or allow it only in exceptional circumstances such as wartime). It is a matter of active controversy in various countries and states, and positions can vary within a single political ideology or cultural region. In the European Union member states, Article 2 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union prohibits the use of capital punishment.
Currently, Amnesty International considers most countries abolitionist. The UN General Assembly has adopted, in 2007, 2008 and 2010, non-binding resolutions calling for a global moratorium on executions, with a view to eventual abolition. Although many nations have abolished capital punishment, over 60% of the world's population live in countries where executions take place, such as the People's Republic of China, India, the United States of America and Indonesia, the four most-populous countries in the world, which continue to apply the death penalty (although in India, Indonesia and in many US states it is rarely employed). Each of these four nations voted against the General Assembly resolutions.
Other articles related to "death penalty, death, penalty":
... of 9 August 2002 (the 3rd Package for Harmonization with the European Union) the death penalty was abolished for peace time offences ... Law 5218 of 14 July 2004 abolished the death penalty for all times ... The death sentence was replaced by aggravated life imprisonment (ağırlaştırılmış müebbet hapis cezası) ...
... The official teachings of Judaism approve the death penalty in principle but the standard of proof required for application of death penalty is extremely stringent ... making the situations in which a death sentence could be passed effectively impossible and hypothetical ... a thousand guilty persons than to put a single innocent one to death." Maimonides argued that executing a defendant on anything less than absolute ...
... It is unclear whether the penalty was death or a fine ... against sodomy with the Buggery Act of 1533, making buggery punishable by hanging, a penalty not lifted until 1861 ... In 1786 Pietro Leopoldo of Tuscany, abolishing death penalty for all crimes, became not only the first Western ruler to do so, but also the first ruler to abolish ...
... Baylor did receive what amounted to a half-season death penalty - the cancellation of its non-conference games for the 2005-2006 season ... supporting this, the NCAA handed down a "death penalty" to Morehouse in 2003 for what it deemed "a complete failure" to comply with NCAA rules and regulations, even though it was Morehouse's ... the sanctions, the NCAA stated that the "death penalty" was primarily reserved for repeat violators that had neither cooperated with the NCAA nor taken any corrective measures ...
... but there was no official Church position on the death penalty ... The death penalty had support from early Catholic theologians Saint Ambrose encouraged members of the clergy to pronounce and carry out capital punishment, while Augustine answered objections ... The Catechism of the Catholic Church states that the death penalty is permissible in cases of extreme gravity ...
Famous quotes containing the words penalty and/or death:
“So the people will pay the penalty for their kings presumption, who, by devising evil, turn justice from her path with tortuous speech.”
—Hesiod (c. 8th century B.C.)
“To die, to sleep
No more, and by a sleep to say we end
The heartache and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir totis a consummation
Devoutly to be wished. To die, to sleep.
To sleep, perchance to dream. Ay, theres the rub,
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil
Must give us pause.”
—William Shakespeare (15641616)