Wednesday, May 18, 2005

State-sponsored killing in Connecticut disappoints death booster.

Upon hearing that Connecticut was going to kill its first person in 45 years, serial killer Michael Ross, the sister of one of his victims was thrilled. But come the killing, which happened on May 13 at 2:00 AM local time, this woman said, "I thought I would feel closure, but I felt anger just watching him lay there and sleep after what he did to these women. But I'm sure I will feel some closure soon."

Yeah, I'm sure you will, too. You just keep telling yourself that, and closure will come. Nothing like the good ol' sin of wrath to bring you to peace. Nothing like taking an eye for an eye. And nothing like giving a killer exactly what he'd been explicitly asking for these past several years: state-assisted suicide.

Marie Hilliard of the Connecticut Catholic Conference was up in arms about the possibility of state recognition of gay marriage recently—but has been quiet about last week's killing. Republican Governor Jodi Rell had been receptive to pleas to inserting a definition of marriage as necessarily being between a man and a woman into the recent legalization of civil unions for same-sex partners in Connecticut (though she opposed civil unions, despite this compromise,) but when it comes to killing people, Governor Rell was gung-ho—while the CCC was eerily quiet. To their credit, they raised a fuss about this back in January, but I guess once they got their intolerant definition of marriage approved in Hartford, they were sated. Odd that this prominent Catholic organization was more concerned about stopping marriages than they were about stopping this killing. The CCC was more outspoken about its opposition to civil unions than it ever was about the death penalty or this state-assisted suicide. For the record, Connecticut's population is about 44% Roman Catholic. I've done some research, but I can find nothing indicating Governor Rell's religious affiliation, if any, and the lack of this information I'd say is a credit to an otherwise lousy governor.

Keep the killings coming. Just wait 'til they're out of the womb to do it, right?

La bêtise, c'est de vouloir conclure.

P.S.: Perhaps the words of Jesus Christ himself would be of interest, since we're talking about the involvement (or the lack thereof) on the part of the Catholic Church. It seems that Christ takes a different side on this matter:

For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. But if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another. This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would. But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.
—Galatians 5:14-24


At Sunday, May 22, 2005 at 12:20:00 PM EDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rell is Episcopalian. The Catholic church would allow both abortion and capital punishment under some, very narrow, circumstances. But one does not have to be religious to be able to make proper distinctions between murder and execution, particularly as it applies in Ross' case.

At Sunday, May 22, 2005 at 8:53:00 PM EDT, Blogger Kurt Kaletka said...

I'm unaware of cases where the Catholic Church will permit abortion, but as to the death penalty, there's a specific case where it's permitted. The Catholic Church says that you can kill someone if you can't find a way to keep that person from doing more harm to others. With Ross locked up, he wasn't about to go out and kill again. The Church would logically consider the killing of Ross by the state of Connecticut unlawful murder, since according to the Church's parameters, Ross in his cell rendered him harmless; he was no longer a threat. My point was that the Catholic Church is strangely selective about what sins they get up in arms about.

State-sponsored killing is wrong, even if you dress it up in the mild term "execution," and I don't say this from a religious point of view. State sanctioning of the killing of a person is wrong, whether you're religious or not.

At Wednesday, July 20, 2005 at 1:33:00 AM EDT, Anonymous Steve said...

Kurt, it is intellectually dishonest to oppose execution--or if you prefer, state-sponsored killing--of the guilty (e.g. Ross), while supporting execution (state-sponsored killing) of the innocent such as Terry Schiavo and millions of unborn Americans through abortion.

I am a strong proponent of the death penalty for those guilty of heinous crimes, such as Michael Ross. I am strongly opposed to the death penalty for the innocent.

I can certainly understand (and even respect) those who are opposed to the death penalty for guilty and innocent alike. But I will never understand those who favor executions (state-sponsored killing, as you seem to prefer) of innocent sick or unborn human beings while whining about the execution of someone guilty of the most heinous of crimes--like Ross.

And by the way, you are wrong to assail the sister of one of Ross's victims. She was justified in her desire for him to face the ultimate punishment. (I venture to say most people--even you--would feel the way she did if they lost a loved one in that way.) You then quote her as saying, "I thought I would feel closure, but I felt anger just watching him lay there and sleep after what he did to these women..." I think even you would have to admit Ross died a much more comfortable death than did any of his victims--a death far better than he deserved.

You could do a much greater service to society if you spent half as much time trying to help the relatives of Ross' victims (rather than castigate them) as you spend trying to protect the guilty from their just desserts.


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