Many criminals today serve their time in prison and are then set free. Most of them go on to commit other crimes, without learning the lesson their punishment was meant to teach. the worst punishment possible is torture and to live with ones own guilt.
In The Scarlet Letter, Hester Prynne is punished by having to stnd on a scaffold for three hours and having to wear a scarlet letter on her breast. After a while she feels no guilt and goes on about her life. People in the community forget about it too. Roger Chillingsworth asks, "Is Hester Prynne the less miserable, think you, for that scarlet letter on her breast?" (Hawthorne 132). Dimmesdale on the other hand, has to live with his guilt. He is mentally troubled and his guilt lasts the rest of his life.
People today have no fear about what might happen to them if they commit a crime. They serve their time and jail and are then set free. That is why there is so much crime where we live. For example many people in the mafia are caught and go to jail. Most of them do not go for their full life but for a couple of years. When they do get out of prison they are still in the mafia. The only thing they learn from being in prison is to cover their tracks up better. People should pay for what they do and be punished properly. For example, if a man rapes a woman he should be castrated. This way people would have fear and not commit crimes.
Torture is also a better punishment rather then death. When a person dies they don't pay for what they have done, they simply die. When they live with pain, they pay for it. For example, a person whose havds were cut off for stealing something would suffer much more that a person who was quickly killed. The only upside of being sent to prison is that people are tortured there. Many of the men who are sent there are raped by other men. The recent movie Dead Man Walking, was a true story about a man that was given the death penalty fro raping a girl and killing both her and her boyfriend. He should not have been killed but instead tortured. He could not take his guilt that later he confessed in tears.
There are many ways a person can be punished. The way our society punishes criminals today is not effective. We need to change out ways of punishment to more fearful ways that actually teach criminals what they are doing wrong. The best way to punish a person is torture and to let them live with there own guilt.
Hawthorne, Nathaniel. THE SCARLETT LETTER. Penguin Books Canada Limited: Markham Ontario. 1959