A man in Norway (photo above) murdered 77 people with a bombing and a shooting spree. A terrorist act of these proportions would receive the death penalty in the United States. However, in Norway, there is no death penalty. In fact, there prison system is majorly based on rehabilitation. Anders Breivik will serve 21 years in a Norwegian prison (shown below) for his crimes.
He will not be released for a few decades, because his release is dependent on how much of a threat he poses to the public. It will take a long time to convince the Norwegian government that is fit to be a member of society again. Shouldn’t he be put to death for his crimes? I do not want to get into an argument about retributive justice, but I think it is important to discuss people that are too dangerous to keep alive. A common response to this notion is life without the possibility of parole. This is an option but does not always work. We have to consider the safety of the public as well as the safety of other prisoners. Solitary confinement or private cells is an additional option. Stanley “Tookie” Williams found a way around his private confinement. Williams was placed in solitary confinement because he was causing problems with the general population of inmates. Somehow, he was still able to call out hits from within his padded cell. He was eventually put to death in 2005. Leaving someone like Williams or Breivik alive is not the solution.
Advocates on either side of the capital punishment debate need to agree that some people deserve to die. Mass murderers and serial killers who thrive on spreading fear and violence have no purpose and no right to be part of society. We need some way to make sure these types of people do not impact our lives. The only way to keep the public safe from monsters is to eliminate them. It is not a good option to limit the ways in which the judicial system can prosecute the criminals that spread fear and pain to the public.