At least this is what Pope Francis wants as he showed support for the sixth World Congress against capital punishment that was held in Oslo, Norway a few months back.
What this does in effect is change the Catechism of the Catholic Church – the compilation of official Catholic teaching, where, before, it said that the church didn’t exclude recourse to capital punishment “if this is the only possible way of effectively defending human lives against the unjust aggressor.”
Now the explanation given is that “the previous policy is outdated and that today the church teaches, in the light of the Gospel, that the death penalty is inadmissible because it is an attack on the inviolability and dignity of the person, and she works with determination for its abolition worldwide.”
Well, let me just say here that I am writing this piece not because I agree with this new ruling of the church, but rather it is more about expressing my opinion against it.
Whether one is a member of the Catholic Church or not, this is a matter that people all over should be talking about as it is a universal concern.
I just find it absurd that Pope Francis is calling for a world “free of the death penalty” because he says it violates the sanctity of life and the dignity of the human person.
What about the sanctity and dignity of the victims that are brutally killed, and that may include sometimes innocent children?
How about those that are mercilessly raped and killed that may include sometimes children, too?
Is there still sanctity and dignity left in the lives of these criminals who consciously take illegal drugs in order to carry out a heinous crime?
What is justice for the victims and their grieving families then if those meted out a death penalty is made to live and enjoy the freedom they don’t deserve, even if it is inside the jail?
If there is a group of people who should be more sympathetic to the victims of any heinous crimes, or any crime for that matter, it should be the priests.
I say, stick it out with the old policy of having recourse for death penalty, if and when warranted.
Death penalty never gets outdated. It continues to be current for those deserving to die.