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Thu Oct 12, 2017, 12:18 PM

Pope Francis Demands Catholics Reject the Death Penalty as 'Inadmissible' In Every Form

Source: Newsweek Magazine




BY LINLEY SANDERS ON 10/12/17 AT 11:06 AM

Pope Francis doubled-down on his demand that Catholics reject the death penalty Wednesday, calling it “contrary to the Gospel” and “inhumane" to human dignity.

“The death penalty is an inhumane measure that humiliates, in any way it is pursued, human dignity,” Francis told a crowd of Catholic leaders on the 25th anniversary of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, a book of Catholic doctrine.

"It is, of itself, contrary to the Gospel, because it is freely decided to suppress a human life that is always sacred," he continued. "In the final analysis, God alone is the true judge and guarantor."

The Catholic Church acknowledges capital punishment, but said its use should be "very rare, if not practically nonexistent." The church officially believes that the death penalty deprives a person of redemption and favors non-lethal punishment.

Read more: http://www.newsweek.com/pope-francis-catholics-reject-death-penalty-inadmissible-683329

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Reply Pope Francis Demands Catholics Reject the Death Penalty as 'Inadmissible' In Every Form (Original post)
DonViejo Oct 12 OP
AtheistCrusader Oct 12 #1
Ken Burch Oct 12 #2
AtheistCrusader Oct 12 #5
Ken Burch Oct 12 #7
AtheistCrusader Oct 12 #8
yallerdawg Oct 12 #3
AtheistCrusader Oct 12 #6
Mosby Oct 12 #4
saidsimplesimon Oct 12 #9
Lokilooney Oct 12 #18
saidsimplesimon Oct 12 #19
Lokilooney Oct 12 #23
apnu Oct 12 #10
AtheistCrusader Oct 12 #11
apnu Oct 12 #12
AtheistCrusader Oct 12 #14
pnwmom Oct 12 #13
AtheistCrusader Oct 12 #15
sandensea Oct 12 #20
Dread Pirate Roberts Oct 12 #16
AtheistCrusader Oct 12 #22
Willie Pep Oct 12 #17
rurallib Oct 12 #21
Vogon_Glory Oct 12 #24

Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 12:19 PM

1. That's kind of funny since his church used to burn people at the stake for saying mean things.

Or saying slightly controversial things.

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Response to AtheistCrusader (Reply #1)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 12:47 PM

2. Yeah. They did that 600 years ago. We all know about it.

And there's still lots of things to take issue with in Catholicism-their fixation with forcing women to have as many children as possible, the homophobia, the transphobia, the part about being waaaay late in dealing with clerical sexual abuse).

Do those things, however, automatically invalidate every positive thing anybody in the Church might say or do?


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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #2)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 01:00 PM

5. I think it makes it a bit irrelevant.

I didn't need the RCC to tell me that the Death Penalty is problematic. I can do just fine opposing it on grounds of economic and racial bias in it's application, as well as the proven use of it against innocent people.

The pope's herp derpery about the 'sanctity of life' is really just part and parcel of aligning with their position on abortion. They seem to understand the concept of cognitive dissonance, that the pro-life (anti abortion), pro-death-penalty right wing doesn't seem to see.


So yeah. Great and all, but i'm not really impressed that the RCC is speaking out about it, on this one issue, with a weak argument, while with their other hand they move against family planning, death with dignity, access to contraceptives, hell they LED the charge in court against the ACA over the birth control mandate. (And won) Spending millions on, and supporting anti-same-sex-marriage efforts. The Mormons caught a lot of flack in California over Prop-8, but the Catholics were right there with them, second largest donor, largest voting bloc. (I'd argue the votes were more important than the donations.)

I'd also like to know, given this supposed special relationship between the Abrahamic god and this one church, that somehow the 'don't execute people' thing wasn't communicated earlier, with all that other 'revealed truth' they supposedly got.

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Response to AtheistCrusader (Reply #5)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 01:03 PM

7. My take is that it's an anti-hypocrisy step.

Up 'til now, they'd been rabidly anti-abortion, but were just fine on executions.

As a non-Catholic-I prefer the term heretic for my own spiritual beliefs-I'm not defending the Inquisition.


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Response to Ken Burch (Reply #7)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 01:09 PM

8. I thought the anti-execution thing was much older, like John Paul II era 'please don't do that' sort

of proclamations.

1960's era. (Maybe that's what you meant by 'til now', on a timescale of 2000 years?)

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Response to AtheistCrusader (Reply #1)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 12:48 PM

3. I got to wrap my head around this.

Atheists are more judgmental and unforgiving than Catholics.

Guess what?

It's still a Big Tent, and I can damn sure tolerate your opinion on this matter!

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Response to yallerdawg (Reply #3)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 01:02 PM

6. What can I say. When a religious org makes a half-hearted positive noise about ONE issue I care

about, while quietly working to undermine most of the rest of the ENTIRE PLATFORM I support, I tend to get a little sarcastic.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 12:52 PM

4. The Catholics also reject assisted suicide and euthanasia.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 01:14 PM

9. Divorce the Pope

Pope Francis is a great disappointment, imo. He weighs in on the death penalty but welcomes the don and his former mistress to the Vatican? Moral authority needs a new definition.

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Response to saidsimplesimon (Reply #9)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 03:11 PM

18. Well, didn't Jesus hang around with the dregs of society also?

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Response to Lokilooney (Reply #18)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 03:15 PM

19. He also had

a righteous anger for turning the tables of the "vendors" in the Temple?

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Response to saidsimplesimon (Reply #19)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 04:31 PM

23. Yes

He didn't have much love of money, and to his credit Francis has been quite critical of wealth disparity once saying: “Terrorism grows when there is no other option, and as long as the world economy has at its center the god of money and not the person.” “This is fundamental terrorism, against all humanity,”

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 01:15 PM

10. I'm an atheist but I dig this Pope.

He's a liberal and pretty progressive heading an organization that is at least 50% hard-core conservative at the moment. He's probably got all kinds of internal political struggles to deal with on a daily basis, I know there's a cadre of cardinals that hate his guts.

But he's trying to drag an ancient religious organization into the light of the modern day, and he smiles and is pleasant about the whole thing.

But what I like most about him is he seems to be the kind of guy who actually walks his talk. Given that most Christian's I've met aren't Christian at all and don't emulate the life for philosophy of their God, here's a guy trying to lead by example. I respect that.

So while some will knee-jerk bash Catholics and religion in general around here, I am not one of those people. I judge people by their actions and his actions are pretty good.

Case in point, he opened a shelter for homeless people who can go to a clean bathroom, take a shower (soap is provided), and get a hair cut all for free. No strings attached, no requirements of conversion like the Salvation Army. Just hot clean water, soap and someone to give a trim. That's true human kindness.

Say what you will of the Church and its leaders, some of them are real hating assholes, but its current leader? Not so much.

Yes he's still behind on many things, but he's moving in the right direction and he's dragging the whole Vatican with him. That counts.

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Response to apnu (Reply #10)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 01:26 PM

11. Name one specific issue he's progressive on that isn't copy/paste from pope John Paul II.

I'm not trying to be an asshole, I'm just confused why this 'moving in the right direction' meme persists.

He is SLIGHTLY left of Ratzinger on two issues I can think of, and that's it. The rest is just a return to the policies of the pope before him.

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Response to AtheistCrusader (Reply #11)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 01:40 PM

12. But you are being an asshole

You're doing the atheist thing that makes atheists all look like dicks.

Because you're so outside the Catholic world you see it as a giant monolith, when its actually a carnival of colors and beliefs, some subtle some not so much. You also appear to be applying American ideas of liberalism and conservationism to an international organization.

Ratzinger was by all Catholic standards I know of, hard-core right wing. And yes he was John Paul II's chief spook who swept priest abuses under the rug. John Paul II said a lot of nice things but did little. Pope Francis is actually doing what he's saying. John Paul II was just talk, 30 odd years of talk.

His homeless shelter in Rome is just one thing. He's got significant issues with poverty, in 3rd world countries and that's a major issue of his that goes way beyond John Paul II.

But you seem to be ignoring the point I was trying to make that the guy is steering a Church that's the size of the Titanic with half the rudder. No matter what Pope Francis does he's not going to turn the whole Church around in his life time. Its too big and complicated and too resistant to change to suddenly snap in another direction all because a progressive Pope is leading it. His struggles are the same as Obama's. And his results will be about the same. Some progress in the end, a whole lot of pissed off people (especially conservatives who chafe at change and progressives frustrated that change didn't happen fast enough).

But my main take away with Francis, as an atheist, is he appears to be actually living what he preaches. I think religion is bunk, don't get me wrong on that. But to see a Christian actually behaving like a Christian, at least one following his God's actual message in the New Testement? That's a breath of fresh air.

So take a shit on him if you want, that's your right to do so, but know you're taking a shit on a guy trying to turn the boat around. Maybe give him a little human respect. And if you respect education and science at all, know that he's a Jesuit, so he comes from the science minded side of the Catholic Church and isn't stupid.

The guy even went to bat for us atheists, which he didn't have to do and I don't recall John Paul II doing either.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-pope-atheists/pope-suggests-better-to-be-atheist-than-hypocritical-catholic-idUSKBN1621I3

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Response to apnu (Reply #12)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 01:53 PM

14. John Paul II had significant issues with poverty as well.

It was when I started comparing Francis and Paul II that I discovered Francis isn't so progressive at all. Paul II and Francis are copy-paste on poverty, and you can see it in his writings when he constantly refers back to JP2.

Francis is ALL appearance. He's wearing simple clothes. Not draping himself in velvet and gold and $500 Italian shoes, like Ratzinger did. That is pretty much the sum of the difference when we say 'living what he preaches'.


Would it surprise you if I pointed out that even Ratzinger said Atheism was less of a "danger" than Christians that claim to be Christians but do not live their values?

I am aware of his Jesuit background. This has not changed his mind on social issues like civil rights for same-sex couples. (When he was just a Jesuit and not the Pope, he was frankly horrifying on this point) It hasn't changed his mind on the efficacy of Condoms in combating the AIDS crisis in Africa. Simple demonstrable science. He swims against the current of facts.

Turning the titanic one or two degrees didn't save it either.

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Response to AtheistCrusader (Reply #11)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 01:45 PM

13. His recent very controversial letter about the family, that got him slapped down

by four cardinals in a public letter of rebuke. They lost.

The Church had traditionally blocked divorced and remarried Catholics from receiving Communion, unless they had gone through an extended and difficult annulment process. Pope Francis says, instead, priests can make individual decisions for their parishioners.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #13)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 01:56 PM

15. This qualifies as 'progressive'?

Just asking, open minded. I guess I didn't capitalize 'progressive' but this seems... uh... well shit, it's one of the only Abrahamic faction faiths that ever had the prohibition at all. Even eastern orthodox allows it.

Progress of a sort, I suppose.

Edit: Yeah, I guess that qualifies. Fair enough.

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Response to AtheistCrusader (Reply #15)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 03:18 PM

20. I hear you, AtheistCrusader.

But remember: everything's relative.

While his views are clearly not progressive on all issues, Pope Francis is a big improvement over his Opus Dei-coddling predecessors John Paul II and Benedict.

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Response to AtheistCrusader (Reply #11)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 02:06 PM

16. Climate Change-He's way ahead of the U.S. policies, not that hard these days

http://w2.vatican.va/content/dam/francesco/pdf/encyclicals/documents/papa-francesco_20150524_enciclica-laudato-si_en.pdf

The climate is a common good, belonging to all and meant for all. At the global level, it is a complex system linked to many of the essential conditions for human life. A very solid scientific consensus indicates that we are presently witnessing a disturbing warming of the climatic system. In recent decades this warming has been accompanied by a constant rise in the sea level and, it would appear, by an increase of extreme weather events, even if a scientifically determinable cause cannot be assigned to each particular phenomenon. Humanity is called to recognize the need for changes of lifestyle, production and consumption, in order to combat this warming or at least the human causes which produce or aggravate it.


For human beings... to destroy the biological diversity of God’s creation; for human beings to degrade the integrity of the earth by causing changes in its climate, by stripping the earth of its natural forests or destroying its wetlands; for human beings to contaminate the earth’s waters, its land, its air, and its life – these are sins”…For “to commit a crime against the natural world is a sin against ourselves and a sin against God


He calls out the rich nations of the world for their impact on the poor nations when it comes to climate change. That's pretty radical stuff for a pope.

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Response to Dread Pirate Roberts (Reply #16)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 03:36 PM

22. The RCC (not the USCCB) is divesting of carbon stocks.

That was the only issue I could come up with myself.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 02:16 PM

17. This is a huge source of fighting between Catholics in this country.

I try to follow the Catholic blogosphere to a certain extent and there is a ferocious debate over the death penalty. Conservative Catholics defend it with more moderate or progressive Catholics opposing the death penalty as part of a "consistent ethic of life."

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Response to Willie Pep (Reply #17)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 03:25 PM

21. figured this would be a tough sell in the USA

I grew up catholic and don't remember ever meeting a catholic - clerical or lay - who was against the death penalty. I am sure that has changed some, but based on some of the policies and politicians catholics back these days, I would imagine there is a strong contingent for the death penalty.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Thu Oct 12, 2017, 04:32 PM

24. And all the hard-line social conservative Catholics

who routinely denounce abortion, contraceptives, and homosexuality and approve of the death penalty, denouncing anyone who deviates as "cafeteria Christians," will become pick-and-choosers themselves.

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