The Research Panel website conducted a survey and asked of 29,364 Japanese them how they felt about the death penalty, this in the wake of the recent executions of three murder convicts. According to the survey, 85.2% of people responded that they are in favor of the death penalty, and 14.9% were against it.
On 21 February, Japan executed 3 convicts for murders including the kidnapping and death of a young girl, and a stabbing rampage that left nine dead. Those executed were Masahiro Kanagawa, Kaoru Kobayashi and Keiki Kano. These hangings drew outrage from Amnesty International and the Japanese Federation of Bar Associations, who made a statement saying they find “these executions unacceptable.” Amnesty International called the Abe administration ‘merciless’ after these executions.
However, the Japanese government largely ignores these reactions and opposition by maintaining that the population at large is in agreement with their policy of penalty by death. This survey apparently supports that argument. These figures are in line with separate surveys conducted by major newspapers on their subscribers on the same issue. The percentages of readers who support capital punishment range from above 80% to 90%. It certainly seems that in Japan people are overwhelmingly in favor of executions. The reasons why they are in favor are typical of death penalty supporters around the world. A sampling of the reasons gathered by the Research Panel website show that they think “Keeping violent criminals alive is a waste of tax revenue,” or that “if a loved one was killed in cold blood, it’s only natural to want them to pay with their life.”
A more surprising idea comes up when some of the reasons of the anti-death penalty crowd are analyzed. Apparently, there are opinions that convicted criminals deserve something “worse than death”. Some are of the opinion that “ending a person’s life by death is way too light a punishment.” This only proves that while much of the developed world seems to be moving away from capital punishment, the people of Japan remain firmly in favor of it and are perhaps even willing to take things a step further.
[ via Rocket News ]