Band 9 essay sample | There should be fixed punishments for each crime

Essay topic

Some people believe that there should be fixed punishments for each type of crime. Others, however, argue that the circumstances of an individual crime, and the motivation for committing it, should always be taken into account when deciding on the punishment.

Sample essay

Punishing people who commit crimes is crucial to maintaining law and order in a society. Some people believe that there should be a fixed punishment for each crime. Others disagree. In their opinion, factors such as the motive behind the crime too should be considered while deciding on the punishment. Although I agree that people who commit crimes should be given exemplary punishment, in my opinion, the judge should also consider the circumstances that led to the crime.

If there is a fixed punishment for each crime, all people who commit murder will get the same punishment. This system will certainly improve judgement efficiency. Since the punishment for each crime has already been given in law books, judges only have to pronounce the verdict. Also when the punishments are consistent with regulations established previously, there will be fewer law conflicts.

Unfortunately, the above arguments in favour of a fixed punishment are not as logical as they sound. Human behaviour is almost always influenced by circumstances. Crime is no different. It is possible for two people who commit murders to have entirely different motives. Perhaps one of them committed the act with the deliberate intention to kill while the other was merely trying to save himself from the attacker while committing the murder accidentally. If there are fixed punishments for murder, both of them will receive the same punishment. This is unfair. It is also unfair to give juveniles the same punishment as adults. It is thus evident that serious ethical issues may arise if fixed punishments are given for each crime.

In my opinion, while awarding the punishment the judge should consider not only the severity of the crime but also the circumstances that led to it. To conclude, it does not make sense to have fixed punishment for each crime because no two persons who commit the same crime have the same motive.

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