Marlowe's Shade

Monday, April 04, 2005

Blogburst for Terri: Should We Oppose Capital Punishment?

In the past couple of days I've seen a couple of posts that raise the question.

In this piece that GOP Christian linked, one gets the impression that Jeb Bush is authorizing assisted suicide, when in fact he signed an execution order for a death row convict that voluntarily gave up his appeal.

Also Vox Day argues against the death penalty from both a Christian and libertarian perspective.

I've opposed the death penalty for most of my life, first as a liberal, then from the Christian basis. Although the Bible certainly advocates capital punishment in the Old Covenant, a case can be made that since our system doesn't require the testimony of at least two witnesses to sentence a person to death, then it is unjust and un-Christian.

But 9-11 had caused a shifting in my position. I still think in most cases it shouldn't be applied, but I'm more than willing to make a exception for terrorists, especially seeing how those that have been released in Israel and from Gitmo have gone right back to killing. And it also means they can't be used as bargaining chips in further terrorist acts. And in the case of homocidal sexual predators I'm definitely warming to the idea. Still, I have to be careful that I'm not just falling into the mindset that if the Europeans and our own liberals oppose capital punishment, it must have some merit.

I think this signals a new distrust of the government from many Christians. I don't see any long term benefits in totally revoking the government's right to kill. If my government morphs into something that I need to fear, I don't think whether there is a death penalty or not will make much difference at that point(keeping our Second Amendment rights is far more important).

I think we have enough on our plate without confusing the judicial homocide of Terri Schiavo with capital punishment. I'm not worried about dying at the hand of my government for committing a capital crime, but I'm far more likely to die at the hands of a judge or my HMO or a "caregiver" who has decided that it's time for me to go.
papijoe 3:00 PM