Steve Jobs, Death Penalty and St. Therese

I’m totally tied up this weekend, but do check out these couple of things.

Deacon Greg: Did you know Steve Jobs was adopted?.
A homily for Respect Life Sunday. It’s one of his best, so don’t miss it.

And think about the question: “what has happened to us?”

Catholic Moral Theologians: seek to abolish the death penalty. The Church’s position is ever-evolving

A couple of St. Therese links on her Feastday: St. Therese Getting Scientific; Being Little; and more

That’s Catholicism! A world wide and bent on saying “yes” to life and love, and the ongoing process of Incarnation that “yes” allows.

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • Anne B.

    From the second-linked article concerning the death penalty:

    “The death penalty does not solve much; a victim still feels loss and crime is not deterred, he said.”

    I assume that means that the original murder victim (for example) is not brought back to life, and his loved ones still mourn. We knew that already.

    Personally I would be delighted to see a little more acknowledgment of the fact that when someone is murdered, a monstrous injustice has been done, and the survivors are still suffering its effects. Most of the time, all they get is a dismissive “Of course, we feel for them, BUT…” and the “but” goes on to describe how cruel and inhumane it would be to snuff out the life of the murderer. The victim is safely underground and out of sight; it’s the perpetrator that we’re all supposed to feel sorry for. And if we don’t, if we want to see an injustice righted, then we’re hard-hearted and just generally horrible people.

  • Manny

    I completely concur with Anne B.

  • LisaB

    I too concur with Anne B.

    We should be careful with abolishing the death penalty; the fight against life sentences begins the day death sentences are abolished.

    I sat on a jury once for a murder trial. As this was a gang crime, the victim was shot execution style in the back of the head, in the testimony of the gang members it came out that the victim received ‘capital punishment’ for betraying the gang. The pictures of the body showed pools of blood with toddler footprints around the body, the victim was a mother of two. The defendant was found guilty, but in my state there is no capital punishment and he received a life sentence. It worries me that he’ll someday be paroled because this wasn’t his first attempt at murder, he just happened to be successful this time.

  • Greta

    My life and belief system was challenged with a single phone call informing me that my granddaughter was dead. Although I have 12 grandchildren and 4 great grandchildren, I have to say that this one was the closest to me. She had been given my name, and many said she looked a lot like me. She was 17 at the time. She was killed in an abortion mill during a botch abortion. We were not aware she was pregnant nor that she had fallen under the spell of a 24 year old scum while away at college in her freshman year. The abortion mill did not have to notify the parents so they learned only when she was dead and in turn called me.

    I had been involved in the pro life movement before this, but every day of my life since over the past three years have been dedicated to ending the horror of abortion and the abortion mills who do not even have to have equipment required of a hospital for a far less invasive procedure. We have sued the abortion mill and have sought to have the scum arrested to get him off the streets but he has so far evaded our attempts as he comes from a wealthy family with connections and power. He is now out of the country.

    Why discuss this here? Because I have evolved over my 77 years on earth that started during the depression and grew up around WWII and Korea. I have lost uncles, brothers, son, and dear friends to war and hate war. But I support America defending itself from the worldwide Islamist terror threat and realize it is a war unlike any other in my life. In a way, it is being fought in the same manner as the scum who terrorized our family and killed our granddaughter. He goes after innocent people and hides behind others. I am sorry, but I have not been able to even think of forgiveness at this point and doubt I will until there is some level of justice. I have prayed for this scum, but as you can see, the prayers come from a hard heart and are dry as the dessert.

    A very good friend of my father worked in a super max prison for the most dangerous prisoners. He is appalled at the thought that some want to see the end of capital punishment, not for revenge or out of hatred, but because it places the guards and other prisoners in a position of extreme danger. He expects that the solution will allow life without possibility of parole or will not happen. He has seen the work of the ACLU and other left leaning groups for prisoner rights effectively remove any and all methods of controling prisoners and thus protecting the guards or other prisoners. Prision violence is constantly going up and the most dangerous are those in for life or very long sentences as they see themselves as nothing to lose. At Deacons blog I have tried to lay some of the issues out which the Cahtolic Church and others have struggled with over time and there is not a good and easy answer unless we are willing to see innocent people killed. The same is true of war. The Church has taken different positions and try to make the just war teaching work, but with the war on terror, this seems to be flawed as there is no state we are fighting and the best solutions appears to be an agressive battle over there. I note that Obama seems to have progressed from candidate Obama screaming we were losing our values by using any form of what he felt was torture, but commander in cheif obama is now killing targeted people, even americans, without attempt at capture or trial. Seems like this is further from our values than water boarding. given a choice of waterboarding or having a drone missle blow me up, I would think of going for the water boarding as bad as i understand that to be. The only thing missing is the screams that the Obama drone doctrine would get from the left and media if W. Bush were sending out the drones.

    Sorry this is so long, but I am old and challenged with my basic eighth grade education. That is why I love reading blogs like this one and Deacons and others. If only I had a tenth of their talent to write…

  • Manny

    My deepest, deepest sympathies on your granddaughter, Greta. May she be in God’s loving heart. I do hope you can find peace with it, though I know it must be incredibly hard.

    The death penalty is not revenge. When a person gets apprehended by the police, given fair judicial process, found guilty of the crime by his peers, sentenced, given exhaustive review lasting many years, then that is justice.

    The notion of revenge under these circumstances is a red herring and frankly silly. Any punishment would constitute revenge. Why isn’t life in jail thought of as revenge? Why isn’t a twenty year sentence? Why isn’t being locked up for a single day thought of as revenge? All of these are punishments against the criminal’s will. Anything pertaining to an act against the criminal’s will can be thought of as revenge. But it isn’t.

  • Gail Finke

    The ideological position that the death penalty must be abolished seems to me to have as little basis in fact as the position that the death penalty is just dandy, thank you. PLENTY can be said against the death penalty, and IMHO it is perfectly justifiable to say that it should be rarely used, or not used at all, in a society with a good prison system and an effective way to make sure that dangerous people are never let out of prison. But that doesn’t mean you get rid of it — situations can change.

    As it is we do not live in a society in which dangerous criminals are never let out of jail. About two years ago, a man who had killed a woman was let out of jail in Cincinnati and allowed to live in a halfway house. He walked away, caught a bus to the neighborhood next to mine, and raped and killed a 12-year-old girl who was out jogging just because he could. Turns out, he had raped and killed several other women, but not been caught because he burned their bodies. That little girl died about three miles from my house in a horrible way because a man who should never have gotten out of jail as long as he lived was living in an unguarded halfway house. So don’t tell me how safe and effective our prison system is. He got the death penalty this time and I do not have any qualms about it. I think the state is perfectly justified in taking his life.

    Many countries in the world have nothing like an effective prison system. How can anyone say that the death penalty should never be used in places where there is no way to imprison dangerous criminals? The biggest problem with the death penalty, as I see it, is that everyone draws his or her own line at using it. I think it’s used far too often. But then, maintaining large numbers of very dangerous and violent criminals has its own problems. It would be nice if we could keep them all quiet and peaceful for decades and just forget about htem. But guess what? We CAN’T. They don’t disappear just because they are not in the news anymore. Someone has to watch them and take care of them and keep them from killing each other, killing guards, running gangs from prison, etc.

  • Doc

    I get burned up every time I see a communication from the archdiocese lumping their opposion to the death penalty in with their opposition to abortion. It represents moral confusion of the highest order, completely ignoring the difference between guilt and innocence. There are times when the bishops seem to adopt positions simply to avoid appearing too Republican. I believe they feel shame that opposition to abortion makes them take the same sides as Republican politicians, so they include Democrat positions (death penalty, social justice, welfare, etc) and give them the same moral weight as abortion.