Capital Punishment within the short story, ‘Two Fishermen’
Capital Punishment is the legality of killing someone for a crime. One of the earliest executions recorded in Canadian history was a man named Peter Cartcel, he was a sailor in Halifax and killed a man and was tried before Halifax’s governor and 6 councilors. He was found guilty and hanged just days later. Before Canada joined confederation, hundreds of criminal offences like murder, treason, and rape were punishable by death. Up until the death penalty was abolished in 1976, murder remained a capital crime. Capital Punishment was replaced with a mandatory life sentence. Although, Capital Punishment did stay in the Canadian national defence act only for the most serious military offences like treason and mutiny. In 1987 the capital punishment was put into motion to be reinstated but was turned down on a free vote. In 1988 the capital punishment was completely abolished in Canada. Years later in 2001 Canadian supreme court agreed to abolish the death penalty except for the most extreme cases with U.S. help.
If Two Fisherman were to take place in Canada the plot would have been just about the same as it taking place in America. Because the short story ‘Two Fisherman’ by Morley Callaghan took place around the 1960’s and the capital punishment in Canada began in 1865 and wasn’t removed until 1976, the criminals would have still received the same punishment. If the short story had taken place in 1976 or later the criminals would have received a life sentence in jail rather than the death penalty.
Thomas Delaney was sentenced the death penalty for punching another man to death after finding out he had molested his wife. The public in this story believed Thomas did not deserve to be put on death row. I too believe Thomas should have been exempt of capital punishment. Women cannot always defend themselves from men as they are often bigger and stronger. Thomas Delaney made an impulse decision and murdered the man out of anger and love for his wife, protecting her from a man cruel enough to molest a woman. He could have gone around killing the man but maybe knocking him out or beating him up and leave the justice system to prove him guilty, but trials don’t always work out in favour of the victims. Having immense rage in your mind and acting out of anger possibly not being able to control himself at the time resulted in the man’s death. Thomas Delaney was no mass murderer but only had killed a single man. The Sanity Delaney has, shows he has the ability not to harm people out of his own enjoyment but sticks up for what he feels is right. Thomas Delany is no free man and is in fact guilty, but I do not believe he deserved capital punishment. Thomas is guilty of a crime and should be serving time in jail alive. The public understood the circumstances of Delaney’s actions and reasons behind the murder yet still believed he shouldn’t have received the death penalty.
Thomas Delaney should have been exempt of the capital punishment law and instead received a jail sentence. A not so innocent man should not be killed for defending a woman, wife or daughter from harm inflicted by a male, especially when they are not able to defend themselves.
I chose this picture becauseI do not agree with the death penalty and personally feel there is better punishments a person can receive like living with the guilt, isolated and alone in jail. Capital Punishment is an easy way out for those who deserve to live with their actions.