The Changing Global Perception on the Death Penalty

Journal of Public Policy

death penalty

By Eric E. Hack, Walden University

The global perception of the death penalty is definitely changing.  Capital punishment is an age old response to certain crimes.  Some crimes punishable by death once included adultery, blasphemy, and questioning the government (Roth 2011).  In most countries in the world today, especially in free societies, adultery and blasphemy are not crimes at all and speaking out against the government is a protected right.  Crimes such as murder, however, are as illegal now as they were millennia ago.  But a global shift in how to punish crimes like murder has steadily altered perceptions on criminal justice and corrections policy.

To date, the abolition of capital punishment has become so popular that 140 nations around the world have formally abolished it partially or entirely (DPIC 2015).  The charter of the European Union (2000) requires the abolition of the death penalty as a price for becoming a…

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