Justice Scalia urges Christians to live fearlessly

There is a lot of talk that Scalia might be nominated for Chief Justice by President Bush.

[/font]Justice Scalia urges Christians to live fearlessly…** **

tanx for that link–awesoem article…he should become chief justice.

Jewish law institute launched in DC
By Janine Zacharia
The Jerusalem Post Nov. 9, 2002

Jewish legal experts have created a new institute that will educate jurists and others about 2,000 years of Jewish law and promote the application of the teachings to contemporary legal disputes and other modern-day issues.

The launch of the Washington-based National Institute for Judaic Law was marked Tuesday night with a kosher dinner at the Supreme Court attended by 200 people, including three Supreme Court Justices - Ruth Bader Ginsberg, Stephen Breyer, and Antonin Scalia.

US President George W. Bush sent greetings and applauded the institute for promoting an “understanding of Judaism’s rich tradition of legal thought.”

“As we face new challenges and welcome new opportunities, our society must continue to promote good character and strong values. Through the study and teaching of Jewish law and philosophy you are contributing to a growing culture of service, citizenship, and responsibility in America,” Bush wrote.

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Scalia, in a letter to the institute’s founder, Noson Gurary, wrote that “Jewish law is certainly one of the oldest and most highly developed systems” and explained why the comparative study of legal traditions was beneficial.**

“The idea is to make Jewish law more accessible to everyone,” said Washington lawyer Alyza Lewin. Both Lewin and her father Nathan Lewin are helping establish the institute.

Last year, Alyza Lewin filed a brief to the Supreme Court based on the Talmud’s take on capital punishment when the court was readying to hear a case on the constitutionality of the electric chair.

“Legal scholars often like to know what other legal traditions have said about certain issues,” said Alyza Lewin. Filing that kind of opinion is only part of the institute’s mandate. It will also promote the teaching of Jewish law, develop curricula on Jewish law that can be integrated into traditional law school courses, and serve as a resource for anyone wanting to know what the vast Jewish legal tradition has to say on various issues.

The institute’s first project, already underway, explores how Jewish law can be applied to modern-day issues surrounding corporate ethics, an idea spurred by the recent corporate scandals involving Enron and Worldcom.

Gurary, who teaches at the State University of New York at Buffalo, thought up the idea of the institute about nine months ago. “By demonstrating the philosophy of Jewish law and its moral values, we can bring a little beacon of light in this world,” Gurary said. “I think this is what we need now, in this day and age.”

Yep, John. Scalia is a constitutionalist, and the Constitution is based on Judeo-Christian ideals/laws. So it’s not much of a surprise to see him encourage the study of Jewish law. Or were you trying to say something different?

[quote=Almeria]Yep, John. Scalia is a constitutionalist, and the Constitution is based on Judeo-Christian ideals/laws. So it’s not much of a surprise to see him encourage the study of Jewish law. Or were you trying to say something different?
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What I’m trying to say is that Scalia, who is sold to us as a Catholic, wrote regarding a 1993 a death penalty case (Herrera v. Collins) that a condemned man awaiting execution did not have a right to another trial even when new evidence showed he was actually innocent of the crime. Scalia reasoned that because the condemned man’s original trial had been free from procedural error, he’d have to die anyway, guilty or not.

While this thinking may be consistant with the insane Talmudic halacha which Scalia is so enamored by, it is most definitely not acceptable to Catholics and must be opposed by them.

Scalia does not merit Catholic support. That is what I’m saying.

I guess Thomas Aquinas and Augustine fail to qualify as good catholics because they supported the death penalty.

The death penalty is hardly an infalliable moral truth like abortion that has always been heald by the church. Catholics through the 2000 years of its history have gone back and forth and disagreed on this matter. Popes, fathers of the church, have disagreed with each other on this issue and the current cathechism while it discourages the use of the death penalty does not altogehter rule it out nor is it described as intrisically evile ie abortion. In fact the state is deemed to have the right to still carrry it out.
Scalia swore to uphold the law and constitution the law in the US has a string history of enforcing the death penalty.
I personally don’t think it should be the way to go and we should discourage its use when possible to uplift all life.
But the death penalty for the guilty is not an evil act.
It has developed into an act not desired but not intrinsically evil ie abortion to critisize a juddge for upholding the law is unfair to him as he is keeping to his oath to uphold the law and he is not in conflict with his faith since the act is neither evil nor a sin as is abortion.

[quote=Maccabees]I guess Thomas Aquinas and Augustine fail to qualify as good catholics because they supported the death penalty.

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I think you’re missing the point, Maccabees.

Neither St. Thomas Aquinas or St. Augustine supported the death penalty for persons who were innocent of the crime they were accused of.

However, that is, in effect, what Scalia advocates in his writing regarding (Herrera v. Collins). This insane injustice cannot be supported by the writings of St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Augustine or any other saint for that matter, and it cannot be supported by Catholics.

[quote=John TE]What I’m trying to say is that Scalia, who is sold to us as a Catholic, wrote regarding a 1993 a death penalty case (Herrera v. Collins) that a condemned man awaiting execution did not have a right to another trial even when new evidence showed he was actually innocent of the crime. Scalia reasoned that because the condemned man’s original trial had been free from procedural error, he’d have to die anyway, guilty or not.

While this thinking may be consistant with the insane Talmudic halacha which Scalia is so enamored by, it is most definitely not acceptable to Catholics and must be opposed by them.

Scalia does not merit Catholic support. That is what I’m saying.
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Wow, that definately wasn’t anywhere near what your post about the Jewish law school said. So, let me look at the issue that you bring up now.

Have you read Herrera v. Collins? I spent the last 25 minutes reading through it. I am not a lawyer, and I do not play one on T.V. I am, however, an educated individual and can read and comprehend the English language. So I am baffled as to where you get your summaries from, because you are misreading or misquoting the case.

Herrera’s claim of actual innocence did not entitle him to federal habeas relief. He was asking for something that there is no basis in U.S. law for him to receive. America was built on a foundation of State’s rights–heck, we held a Civil War over that fact. The state of Texas has an lawful 30 day limit on introduction of evidence. 10 years is quite past that. The “supporting cases” Herrera used to make his plea for federal habeas relief were not relevant, either. As you do correctly state above, there were no proceedural errors in his original trial, so federal habeas relief is not possible.

However, it was specifically said in the finding that “Herrera is not left without a forum to raise his actual innocence claim. He may file a request for clemency under Texas law, which contains specific guidelines for pardons on the ground of innocence.” So, contrary to your statement, Scalia did not say that Herrera had to die.

I have no problem with Scalia’s findings. He upheld the just law of the land. He did not try Herrera originally, he did not sit on the jury, he was not in a position to grant clemency, and he did not “flip the switch”. Scalia did his job in a just way. Scalia does believe in the death penalty, which as Catholics we are permitted to do. In my opinion, Scalia did in no way violate Catholic teaching in this finding. If you have evidence to the contrary, please present it so that I may have a better view. But by looking at the facts of the case, I side with Scalia.

http://www.counterpunch.org/fellows04192003.html
The first thing to know about Scalia is that he is an originalist. An originalist is one who reads the Constitution to mean only what it meant when it was written. Recently, Scalia has said “the Constitution that I interpret and apply is not living but dead,” which brings to mind the startling image of Scalia as pathologist, picking over the corpse of our Constitution, searching it for clues as to what its demise might mean for the rest of us. Scalia and other conservatives have said that this Constitutional view is the best because it limits the judge in his reading and thus prevents him from engaging in “judicial activism.” Judicial activism is bad, according to this view, because it is undemocratic; it is the judge “making” law from the bench. Scalia rejects any notion of the “evolving standards of decency,” a phrase at the core of modern death penalty jurisprudence, because to apply a modern judge’s notion of decency is to impose that sense of decency on the rest of the population.

In Herrera, Justice Scalia said that even if a person had obtained evidence after trial which showed that he was actually innocent of the crime for which he had been convicted, he could still be legally put to death by the state. Wow. You don’t believe me? Here then, in his own words, is the Honorable Justice Antonin Scalia: “There is no basis in text, tradition, or even contemporary practice for finding in the Constitution a right to demand judicial consideration of newly discovered evidence of innocence brought forward after conviction.” Allow me to translate-if evidence of your innocence is found after you’ve been convicted, you have no right to have that evidence brought to the attention of a court. Wait, there’s more: “I can understand, or at least am accustomed to, the reluctance of the present Court to admit publicly that Our Perfect Constitution lets stand any injustice, much less the execution of an innocent man who has received, though to no avail, all the process that our society has traditionally deemed adequate.” Here Scalia means to say that once you’ve had your shot in court, you’re done, whether or not justice has been served, or whether you are actually guilty or not. And finally, “If the system shocks the dissenter’s conscience * perhaps they should doubt the calibration of their consciences.” Translation: if you don’t like this system, then you are too squeamish. Get over it.

To give the devil his due (as they say), Scalia says that he thinks it would be improbable if a case “of [actual] innocence would fail to produce an executive pardon.” He might be right. The innocent death row inmate might be lucky enough to have a George Ryan in the governor’s chair of his state. Then again, he might be unlucky enough to have a George W. Bush. *

October, 2003 Dear Justice Scalia: An Open Letter on Catholic Social Teaching About the Death Penalty from a Catholic Law Professor to a Catholic Supreme Court Justice By Bill Quigley

loyno.edu/twomey/blueprint/vol_lvii/No-02_Oct_2004.html
Twice last year you rejected the anti-death penalty stance of Catholic social teaching. I would like to discuss your comments at the January, 2002, Pew Forum on religion and the death penalty at the University of Chicago.While on a panel there, you made the following statements (which others can read at much more length at the Pew Forum website, www.pewforum.org).

       "When I sit on a court that reviews and affirms capital convictions,           I am part of "the machinery of death." My vote, when joined with           at least four others, is in most cases the last step that permits an execution           to proceed. I could not take part in that process if I believed what was           being done to be immoral..."

“…I do not agree with Evangelium Vitae and the new Catholic catechism _ or the very latest version of the new Catholic catechism _ that the death penalty can only be imposed to protect rather than avenge, and that since it is, in most modern societies, not necessary for the former purpose, it is wrong…”

Justice Scalia, you and I are in absolute agreement on one point: Catholic social teaching clearly and strongly opposes executions in the US.

       As you noted, Pope Paul II, in his 1995 statement, *Evangelium Vitae*,           or Gospel of Life, pointed out that as a result of steady improvements           in the organization of the penal system, "cases in which the execution           of the offender would be absolutely necessary "are very rare, if not           practically non-existent." (Paragraph 56). 

       The 1997 Catechism of the Catholic Church states that although the death           penalty would be theoretically permissible in instances when it is "the           only possible way of effectively defending human lives against the unjust           aggressor," such instances are "practically nonexistent" in           today's world, given the resources available to governments for restraining           criminals. 

       Most recently, at his Sept. 13, 2000 general audience in St. Peter's Square,           the Holy Father expressed his hope: 

       "that there no longer be recourse to capital punishment, given that           states today have the means to efficaciously control crime, without definitively           taking away an offender's possibility to redeem himself." 

       The US Catholic Bishops have also been very clear about their opposition           to executions. In their 1980 "Statement on Capital Punishment," the           bishops stated that, 

       "in the conditions of contemporary American society, the legitimate           purposes of punishment do not justify the imposition of the death penalty." 

       Abolition of capital punishment, the bishops said, would do the following: 

       • It would reaffirm the unique worth and dignity of each person from           the moment of conception, as a creature made in the image and likeness           of God. 

       • It would underscore the conviction that God is the Lord of life,           and would remove any ambiguity as to the Church's affirmation of the sanctity           of human life in all its stages, including the unborn, the aged and the           infirm. 

       • It would be in accordance with the example of Jesus, who both taught           and practiced forgiveness. 

       • It would emphasize that the best means for promoting a just society           are intelligence and compassion, not power and vengeance. 

       In their Nov. 2000 statement entitled "Responsibility, Rehabilitation,           and Restoration: A Catholic Perspective on Crime and Criminal Justice," the           U.S. bishops wrote:"It is time to abandon the death penalty -- not           just because of what it does to those who are executed, but because of           how it diminishes all of us" 

Other Catholics involved in the execution of people have arrived at different conclusions than you. For example, former Mississippi Death Row Warden Don Cabana was unable to reconcile his Catholic faith with his role as executioner, resigned his post, and began working to abolish the death penalty. (You can find out how to get a copy of a one hour video with Mr. Cabana from Catholics Against Capital Punishment, www.cacp.org.)

I think he would make a good chief justice.

[quote=ThornGenX]I think he would make a good chief justice.
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If I can’t have Sekulow, I’ll take Scalia.

:thumbsup:

Be careful what you wish for.

And pray that you are never falsely prosecuted for a crime resulting in capital punishment. I believe your sentiment would differ tremendously under such circumstances.

[quote=John TE]Be careful what you wish for.

And pray that you are never falsely prosecuted for a crime resulting in capital punishment. I believe your sentiment would differ tremendously under such circumstances.
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Again, have you read the case? Scalia did what he could according to the law. Whether you like it or not, Catholics can hold different views on the death penalty. If you want to dislike Scalia for holding a different view, that’s one thing–don’t base it on lies, though.

[quote=Matt25]Then again, he might be unlucky enough to have a George W. Bush.
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Are you trying to blame Bush for not granting clemency? Please. Do at least some research–Ann Richards was governor at the time.

[quote=Almeria]Again, have you read the case?

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Yes I have, paying particularly close attention to these comments from Scalia.

“I can understand, or at least am accustomed to, the reluctance of the present Court to admit publicly that Our Perfect Constitution lets stand any injustice, much less the execution of an innocent man who has received, though to no avail, all the process that our society has traditionally deemed adequate.”

“If the system shocks the dissenter’s conscience * perhaps they should doubt the calibration of their consciences.” *

I am Catholic, and as a Catholic I cannot support this indfference towards true justice, particulary where human lives are concerned.

I should hope that you never find your God given right to live revoked by an unfair prosecution and subject to the legal interpretation of such a “judge.”

[quote=John TE]I think you’re missing the point, Maccabees.

Neither St. Thomas Aquinas or St. Augustine supported the death penalty for persons who were innocent of the crime they were accused of.

However, that is, in effect, what Scalia advocates in his writing regarding (Herrera v. Collins). This insane injustice cannot be supported by the writings of St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Augustine or any other saint for that matter, and it cannot be supported by Catholics.
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I think you missed the point you provide me no direct quotes on this case nor any references to the case rather you spin your opinion and I am suppose to accept your interpretation of events as the gospel truth provide me with evidence please what you have given me is hersey and that doesn’t hold water in court.

[quote=Maccabees]I think you missed the point you provide me no direct quotes on this case nor any references to the case rather you spin your opinion and I am suppose to accept your interpretation of events as the gospel truth provide me with evidence please what you have given me is hersey and that doesn’t hold water in court.
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Ok, here for the third time in this thread is Scalia’s concurrance from the Herrera v. Collins case.

“I can understand, or at least am accustomed to, the reluctance of the present Court to admit publicly that Our Perfect Constitution lets stand any injustice, much less the execution of an innocent man who has received, though to no avail, all the process that our society has traditionally deemed adequate.”

“If the system shocks the dissenter’s conscience * perhaps they should doubt the calibration of their consciences.” Antonin Scalia regarding Herrera v. Collins*

Scalia is saying in legal context that no system is perfect and allows for the possibility of the execution of an innocent person. The counter argument that the death peanlty should not exist due to the possibilty of error.

Scalia’s argument is that the law does not need to go above and beyond all possiblites but the normal jurisprudence of the law.
In other words in order to not have any doubt whatsoever we could try Scott Peterson 20 times to make sure he really didn’t do it.
Scalia says you need not do that one time is adequate.
Look Scalia’s argument is not barbaric and calling for the execution of a particular person due to overwhemling evidence. Every defense attorney will tell you they have overhwhelming evidence and their case needs to be retried due to this new evidence the cost of their request would be beyond reasonable.
Look I am not proponent of the death peanlty all I am saying there is certain amount of valdity to his argument as is Augustine and Aquinas. They would admit the con of the death panalty is the possibility of an innocent being prosecuted. But that the pros of protecting the general public and a means of temporal justice outweigh the very rare instane that this would occure and of corse we put many legal safegurds to make this nearly impossible.
All I am saying reasonable minds can disagree on such an issue.
As for the argument that once incarcerated these men are no longer threats is beyond niave. Behind bars many criminals can call hits on fellow prisoners on even their enemies still out on the streets from the jail cell. Just because one is behind bars does not diminish all persons power to do evil.

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