The death penalty - right or wrong


Is the death penalty right or wrong?
As heinous as some crimes are, the death penalty just seems wrong to me.
What say my CAF brothers and sisters on this matter?


Wrong, on the grounds that it violates the consistency of life ethic


Inadmissible according to Church teaching


Wrong in my personal belief. I am 100% pro life so I mean that from conception to natural death. God alone gives life and God alone can take life. If I deprive someone of the time they may be working on saving their soul: repenting, asking forgiveness for their sins, seeking forgiveness and receiving that forgiveness then I am playing God. NO ONE can play God. We all have until our last breath to repent and ask for forgiveness but if I chose the time of a person’s death by any means then I am depriving them of that last moment to make their souls right with God.


The death penalty is right. According to scripture this was the penalty that God required for murder. In addition to the institution of the death penalty in Genesis, and its requirement for murder under the Sinai Covenant, continuity was maintained in favor of the death penalty in the New Testament as well. As Paul and Peter both assert, the government carries the sword for a reason.

As God stated: Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed, for God made man in his own image. In the Mosaic law, God speaks of the shedding of innocent blood as polluting the land, and the only way to atone for such a crime is by the blood of the murderer. He says that no ransom shall be accepted.

God is pro-life, so much so that when a person commits murder, he requires the life of the murderer, this is for the sake of the entire community. Something to think about when reading a statement in the catechism that says that the death penalty is inadmissible.


I agree with you…I don’t see any real reason why a civilized society would tolerate it…
A better solution would be a sentence of life at hard labor with no chance of parole…the guilty would have a chance to repent…those wrongly convicted could be released rather than executed…the proceeds of their labor, after expenses, could be given to the victims of their crime…


Throughout history, the church has accepted the validity of the death penalty in particular situations. Look on the First Things web site for an article explaining punishment by cardinal Avery Dallas.


The death penalty is not intrinsically evil so there are some circumstances when it can be used by the state. But now days it’s not needed much because we have other means to punish and safeguard the people like life in prison.


I have no compassion or sympathy for those who take a life but I am very uncomfortable with the state having that kind of control. I’m 100% pro-life on abortion, against euthanasia but moderately against the death penalty.


There are some who say that the death penalty is more humane, because a life is ended quickly. Life in prison is a terrible thing. Perhaps life in prison is worse than the death penalty?
Just a few more thoughts on the matter.


I think it’s right, but only in extreme cases like rape.


That’s incredibly dangerous. Because rape is an exceptionally hard crime to prove, and then you have the risk of someone being wrongly convicted of rape due to a false allegation. There’s just no way of defending the death penalty in cases like rape, or any case for that matter


Some believe that the only people who should be imprisoned are those who are convicted of murder, rape, or other violent crimes. That probation and fines should be given to those who commit less violent crimes.


I guess it depends on whether one views the sanctity of life as only applicable in some cases, rather than in all. But, as Jesus stated, we should not fear what harm others can do to our bodies, but only what harm can be done to our souls.


Oh I agree. I’m not saying it should be taken lightly. “Can rape be proven?” is the question. I would argue that it can be. It has to be a sure thing, though, for me to support the death penalty. We must not let it get to the point where a false accusation can be made and the accused person suffers the death penalty.


From conception to natural death. The death penalty isn’t quite natural is it


Not unless you consider some chemicals cooked up in a lab somewhere to be “natural.”


The recent (2017) revision of the authoritative Catechism of the Catholic Church says, emphasis mine:

2267. Recourse to the death penalty on the part of legitimate authority, following a fair trial, was long considered an appropriate response to the gravity of certain crimes and an acceptable, albeit extreme, means of safeguarding the common good.

Today, however, there is an increasing awareness that the dignity of the person is not lost even after the commission of very serious crimes. In addition, a new understanding has emerged of the significance of penal sanctions imposed by the state. Lastly, more effective systems of detention have been developed, which ensure the due protection of citizens but, at the same time, do not definitively deprive the guilty of the possibility of redemption.

Consequently, 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”,[1] and she works with determination for its abolition worldwide”. (source)


I am pro life. I believe the death penalty should be abolished, unless it is necessary to protect other innocent lives.
Holding to the sanctity of life is difficult in many cases when others are detestable or inconvenient. The difficulty is something to be overcome.


According to Aquinas:

Therefore if a man be dangerous and infectious to the community, on account of some sin, it is praiseworthy and advantageous that he be killed in order to safeguard the common good . . . . ST IIa-IIae, q. 64, a. 2.

It is permissible to kill a criminal if this is necessary for the welfare of the whole community. However, this right belongs only to the one entrusted with the care of the whole community – just as a doctor may cut off an infected limb, since he has been entrusted with the care of the health of the whole body. ST IIa-IIae, q. 64, a. 3.

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