Issues: Crime & the Death Penalty

What does "Faithful Citizenship" say about crime and the death penalty?

"Society has a duty to defend life against violence and to reach out to victims of crime. Yet our nation's continued reliance on the death penalty cannot be justified. Because we have other ways to protect society that are more respectful of human life, the USCCB supports efforts to end the use of the death penalty and, in the meantime, to restrain its use through broader use of DNA evidence, access to effective counsel, and efforts to address unfairness and injustice related to application of the death penalty." #69

"Promoting moral responsibility and effective responses to violent crime, curbing violence in media, supporting reasonable restrictions on access to assault weapons and handguns, and opposing the use of the death penalty are particularly important in light of a growing "culture of violence." An ethic of responsibility, rehabilitation, and restoration should be a foundation for the reform of our broken criminal justice system. A remedial, rather than a strictly punitive, approach to offenders should be developed." #85

Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship, by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (November 2007).


Fore more, see "Catholic Social Teaching on Crime and the Death Penalty."

What does the Democratic National Platform say about crime and the death penalty?

"As Democrats, we are committed to being smart on crime. That means being tough on violent crime, funding strategic, and effective community policing, and holding offenders accountable, and it means getting tough on the root causes of crime by investing in successful crime prevention, including proven initiatives that get youth and nonviolent offenders back on track.

"We believe that the death penalty must not be arbitrary. DNA testing should be used in all appropriate circumstances, defendants should have effective assistance of counsel. In all death row cases, and thorough postconviction reviews should be available."

What does Barack Obama say about crime and the death penalty?

"We have ex-offenders who are coming out of prisons constantly. Thousands each and every day. We're going to have to make a commitment to provide them a second chance.

There's a biblical injunction...to make sure that those young men and women have an opportunity to right their lives. And that will require a government investment in transitional jobs because, in some cases, the private sector won't hire people....

"We may need to provide them the kinds of job training support they are not currently getting. The notion that we take away educational programs in the prisons to be tough on crime makes absolutely no sense. And we need to invest in that." Sojourners Presidential Forum, June 4, 2007

For more, see barackobma.com "Crime and Law Enforcement."



Wednesday, April 23, 2014

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"Today I say to you that the challenges we face are real. They are serious and they are many. They will not be met easily or in a short span of time. But know this, America: They will be met.

"On this day, we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord.

"On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn-out dogmas, that for far too long have strangled our politics."

Inaugural Address, President Obama


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