Pope Francis’ stated reason for declaring capital punishment evil is: the defence of the dignity of human life from the first moment of conception until natural death. How does that defence excuse killing in self-defence (supposing Pope Francis considers that moral) but not capital punishment? Pope Francis is or should be well aware that many who have upheld the defence of human life from conception to natural death see no contradiction between that defence and proposing the moral liceity of both self-defence and capital punishment. It’s incumbent on him to show the relevant distinction he is making – if indeed he has one. Otherwise, his argument is, to say the least, unconvincing.
So I find it hypocritical that the same countries who have abolished capital punishment because it is "barbaric" to defend public safety that way are at the same time prepared to enforce political power and defend their territorial claims through infinitely more violence and bloodshed than the death penalty would ever require.
(Capital Punishment: Life or Death, Internet).
It is important to note as well that the catechism here simply reiterates the teaching of an encyclical, Pope John Paul II’s . Commentators routinely emphasize that the pope was opposed to capital punishment in practice, but they too often ignore the fact that did not , but indeed , the traditional teaching that the Gospel does not rule out capital punishment in an absolute way. And he did so in documents having a high degree of authority.
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How many “victims” of capital punishment (not to mention terminal illness) might have been damned without the knowledge of their imminent demise? Do they share our mortal squeamishness in paradise? Not likely. They undoubtedly conclude, and rightly so, that we place too much emphasis on this life and too little on the next.
Capital Punishment in the United States - Wesley Lowe
Anyone seeking a deeper understanding of the positive effects of capital punishment would be well advised to read The Consolation of Philosophy, by Boethius, or Herman Melville’s short story “Billy Budd.” One is a factual, the other a fictional, account of a man unjustly condemned to death who nevertheless overcomes his bitterness and self-pity and, recognizing the blessing in his misfortune, seizes the opportunity to save his soul. Atheists and agnostics, depending on their temperament, view capital punishment either as just or vengeful. Only the faithful, however, can see it for what it really is: the ultimate act of mercy.
Responding to Capital Punishment Arguments by Edward …
I have problems killing a flea. I have sat on a jury in a number of criminal trials. None involved capital crimes. We always seemed to ask “does the punishment fit the crime”? Once the verdict was rendered the convicted was always given a number of repeal options. If appeals are granted by a judge in a capital case why do the defense attorneys execute those appeals in an attempt to reverse the verdict? The only concern for the church is the continual execution of innocent people. That’s when the appeals stop!
IELTS Essay, topic: Capital punishment | IELTS-Blog
We are now in a position to see why an authoritysuch as Palazzini, as recently as 1954, presents the Church’smagisterial teaching regarding torture as being by no meansclear-cut (cf. A12). The fact is that in the course of nearly twomillennia, no teaching either for or againsttorture (for any purpose whatever) had ever been laid down by theChurch in either her ordinary or extraordinary magisterium. What wehave seen is a disappointing magisterial during thepatristic period, followed by a merely magisterialteaching (cf. B1) against confession-extracting torture whichprevailed in the late first and early second millennia. But thiswas then obscured, in theory and in brutal practice, for anotherhalf-millennium by an opposing which was endorsed up till the 18th century by evensaints and Doctors of the Church. Meanwhile, the liceity of severe pain-infliction for knownoffenders was constantly and universally upheld without theperceived need for specific magisterial interventions. Thisposition was based on explicit biblical teaching, and an theological argument flowing from the universallyacknowledged liceity of capital punishment. The specific case of for certain convicted offenders was quitealien to first-millennium Christian tradition and practice, but itsliceity also then became in the medievalperiod. Indeed, opposition to this dreadful practice was eventuallycensured by the 16th-century papal magisterium –though, as we have seen, in an ill-defined way that left ratherunclear both the ‘matter’ (the precise nature of whatwas being insisted upon) and the ‘form’ (the degree offorce of this insistence) of the censure.