Austin Sarat and Christian Boulanger on European death-penalty opponents:
Particularly in European abolitionist discourse, the binary opposition between "civilized" and "uncivilized" criminal justice systems is conjured up all too often and too easily. While this might be a powerful rhetoric, it only works as a "conversation stopper." It is further empirically incorrect, since abolition seems to be rooted in European societies much less than the claim implies. Lastly, it seems the perpetuation of colonialist discourse to establish moral hierarchies between whole societies based on their "civilizational progress."
Sarat & Boulanger, ‘Putting Culture into the Picture’, in Sarat & Boulanger, The Cultural Lives of Capital Punishment, pp. 32-33.