D.C. Sniper Set to Be Executed - WSJ.com

D.C. Sniper Set to Be Executed - WSJ.com

If you read the comments posted to this article, you can see just how bloodthirsty some people are when it comes to punishing people such as the DC sniper. For example,

"He needs to be killed quickly and in the most horrific way possible with no due process."
I ask you, is this healthy? Is this a culture of life with people clamoring for the healing of not only the sniper's victims, but the sniper, himself? Or, is this a culture of death seeking death?

Can any good come from evil means? Is the death penality evil means? Is the American government's application of capital punishment moral?

The article quotes some a child of one of the sniper's victims (see below). What do you think of this? Is it possible for us to move beyond a moral code of retribution (i.e. an eye for an eye) to one of love and beatitude?

Cheryll Witz is one of several victims' relatives who were going to watch the execution. Malvo confessed that, at Muhammad's direction, he shot her father, Jerry Taylor, on a Tucson, Ariz., golf course in March 2002. "He basically watched my dad breathe his last breath," she said. "Why shouldn't I watch his last breath?"

What does the Church teach about the death penalty? That is, what does the greatest instituition of moral advocacy in the world, which is at once ancient and new, and will last until the end of all things--what is its teaching concerning the death penalty?

I believe the following is a good account of Pope John Paul II's opposition to the death penalty:

"A sign of hope is the increasing recognition that the dignity of human life must never be taken away, even in the case of someone who has done great evil. Modern society has the means of protecting itself, without definitively denying criminals the chance to reform. I renew the appeal I made most recently at Christmas for a consensus to end the death penalty, which is both cruel and unnecessary." (Homily at the Papal Mass in the Trans World Dome, St. Louis, Missouri, January 27, 1999)
If society can separate its members who are guilt of great evil, adequately, justly, and effectively, there is no need for the death penalty.
Paragraph 2267 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church states that cases in which the death penalty should be applied in modern society are "very rare, if not practically non-existent."
The systems of a just society should always and everywhere encouraging healing and not bloodlust, or we will all reap the consequences.
For an end to the death penalty, for the repose of the souls of both John Allen Muhammad and his victims, we pray to the Lord.

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