From an article in The New Yorker about the murderous streak in American history:

Long ago, Beccaria (Cesare Beccaria, the Italian author of 1764’s “On Crimes and Punishment”) pointed out the meaningfulness of the correspondence, over time, between crime and punishment, between one kind of violence and another. If the history of murder contains a lesson, Beccaria believed, it was this: “The countries and times most notorious for severity of punishment have always been those in which the bloodiest and most inhumane of deeds were committed.”

Rom 5.20: “The law was added so that the trespass might increase“.