La moralidad de la pena capital

A menudo se critica a los Estados Unidos por negarse a abolir la pena capital. Muchos afirman actualmente que la abolición de la pena capital es precondición de un sistema jurídico penal civilizado. El Premio Nóbel Gary Becker no está de acuerdo.

Los gobiernos europeos se oponen firmemente a la pena capital --la Unión Europea la prohíbe por completo-- y algunos europeos consideran que su uso en los Estados Unidos es cruel. En efecto, muchos intelectuales europeos sostienen que no sólo la pena capital sino los castigos en general no disuaden a los criminales.

Pero mientras que los europeos, con tasas de criminalidad muy por debajo de las estadounidenses durante el último medio siglo, podían darse el lujo de ser relativamente "blandos" con la mayoría de los delitos, han visto un brusco aumento de sus tasas de criminalidad en los últimos veinte años. En cambio, las tasas estadounidenses han decrecido, debido en parte a un mayor uso de los castigos.

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