Letter: Death penalty not the same

By The Daily Illini

In response to Dan Levin’s Tuesday letter: How many times must this idea of correlation between the death penalty and abortion be refuted? How many times will this charge of hypocrisy be leveled before the levelers understand?

Quite simply and quite clearly, the language of the bumper stickers-“You can’t be Christian and pro-choice”-is as precise as it is forceful. There is no way to argue against that statement. Christian ideology and pro-choice ideology are at complete odds with one another; Christian ideology expressly forbids the unjust taking of innocent life, while pro-choice ideology always entails the unjust taking of innocent life. There are only a handful of issues on which the church takes such an uncompromising stand, and surprising as it might seem, capital punishment is not one of them. There are never any circumstances that justify abortion-thus the bumper sticker-but there could be circumstances that justify capital punishment. This always has been and will always be the church’s teaching.

The most glaring example of hypocrisy in this election is not that displayed by the bumper stickers but rather by the “Catholic” politician whose policies are anything but. I wonder what, on Kerry’s first visit to the Vatican, the Pope will say to him. I guarantee that it will be explicit, forceful and morally binding on a member of the faithful. More importantly, I wonder if Kerry will listen.

Shame on you for disenfranchising religious voters in this election. They have as much of an obligation as you to vote according to their consciences.

Peter Bess

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senior in LAS