April 10, 2005

"Culture of Life" Agenda May Prompt Change on Death Penalty

electric chair
For years, it has seemed that the conservative Christians most interested in outlawing abortion just so happen to be some of the most vocal supporters of capital punishment. Evidently, their "culture of life" is quite selective. This looks like blatant hypocrisy to many of us, and it now sounds like at least some conservative Christians might be having second thoughts.

Is this a political ploy, or could it actually represent a shift in policy? Given that increasing numbers of fundamentalist Christians appear to be rethinking their support for the death penalty, it sounds like it may soon be time for elected Republicans to do the same.

Even if this is another example of Republicans pandering to their Christian base, I'll try not to complain too loudly if it results in the abolition of the death penalty. If we could just do without all the "culture of life" crap and view ourselves as a civilized and rational society, that would be even better. There are plenty of valid secular reasons to abolish the death penalty (e.g., it does not deter crime, it is a cruel and unusual punishment, state-sanctioned murder is morally indefensible). As a result, there is really no need to make it all about Christianity.