Yesterday, Texas executed its 400th person since the Supreme Court lifted the ban of the death penalty in 1982. However, according to Mario Marazziti, the spokesman for the Sant’Egidio Movement, the tide seems to be turning.
Marazziti told Vatican Radio that “many states are discussing bills about the moratorium.” This is due to the fact that the public has recognized alternatives for punishments in the United States and believe that removing the death penalty will eliminate possible mistakes or errors in sentencing.
In a previous statement on capital punishment, the Catholic Bishops of Texas urged the state to find alternative punishments for criminals.
“While human logic alone seems to support the abolition of the death penalty, as moral leaders we call for alternatives because of its moral incongruity in today's world. The Catechism of the Catholic Church states, "If ... non-lethal means are sufficient to defend and protect people's safety from the aggressor, authority will limit itself to such means, as these are more in keeping with the concrete conditions of the common good and more in conformity with the dignity of the human person.”
“In our modern society, we have means of keeping an offender from harming others. Although in previous times people of faith have employed capital punishment, today we have the ability to realize better the principles of mercy, forgiveness, and unconditional love for all people”.