Russel Saltzman's struggles with the death penalty mirror my own. Good read here:
I am opposed to the death penalty, though I don’t recall ever writing about it before now. Probably my hesitation is due to the degree of my opposition to it. I’m not the sort to go out holding a sign or marching for much of anything. I guess I oppose capital punishment only about six days out of a week.
That seventh day is when I hear about an unusually ugly murder, committed by a heartless, merciless murderer. In some trials the lethality and viciousness of the killer, and the blood of the victim, simply begs for blood-vengeance. Then I am all pro-death penalty. I want to see that guy turned into a crispy critter, none of that la-la land pentobarbital-induced sleepy-time bye-bye. A hemlock concoction is too good for the killer. Cruel and unusual, I’m thinking, is exactly the sort of execution called for, and the crueler and the more unusual it is, the better.
That’s just in the abstract, of course, only one day a week. Twenty-three years ago, it didn’t feel so abstract.
Read the whole thing.
It's easy to be for or against something in a vacuum. It's something else entirely when there's personal capital invested.
Mr. Saltzman, who's making his way across the Tiber River as a former Lutheran pastor, touches on this beautifully.
Hats off to him for voicing the struggle.
H/T to Mark Shea who opines with some effect:
When Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Iran, Iraq, North Korea and the Communist Chinese are the closest allies you have in your quarrel with the Magisterium, the odds are extremely high that the Church is right and you are wrong.
It is food for thought.