- The Washington Times - Monday, March 21, 2011


@-Text.noindent:Gov. Pat Quinn recently signed into law a bill banning the death penalty in Illinois (“Illinois abolishes death penalty; cites wrongful convictions,” Web, March 9). He gave two arguments for his decision, both of them ill-thought-out.

@-Text.normal:The first is his contention that the death penalty is immoral. For a professing Christian, the death penalty is, in fact, moral as applied to convicted murderers: “By man shall man’s life be taken if he has shed blood” (Genesis 9:6). The commandment “Thou shall not murder” (Exodus 20:13) does not apply to judicial execution of murderers. A statewide ban on the death penalty guarantees that no murderer in Illinois, no matter how plainly guilty, will face execution. This violates Christian moral law.

Mr. Quinn’s second argument is that the death penalty allows for innocent men convicted of murder to be executed. As Mr. Quinn said, “It is impossible to create a perfect system.” No judicial process is “perfect,” and there is always the possibility of wrongful conviction, no matter the crime. How, then, can Mr. Quinn justify any judicial punishment? The answer is he cannot - the logical conclusion of his own argument.

@-Text.noindent:JOSEPH DOOLEY

Glen Burnie, Md.

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