The Pacifica Evening News, Weekdays, for August 17, 2011 - 6:00pm
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"We feel that this is an insult to victims of injustice" says a spokesman against the initiative to repeal the death penalty in California. What did Jesus say:" You have heard that it was said, 'An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. But I say to you, do not resist an evildoer. If anyone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.' " (Matthew 5:38–39). This was Jesus Christ's rejection of the old testament law which he thought only encouraged vengeance. Church father St. Augustine discussed in his Contra Faustum, Book XIX, that the old testament's eye for an eye leads to the 'fulfilment or destruction' . Mahatma Gandhi: "An-eye-for-an-eye-for-an-eye-for-an-eye ... ends in making everybody blind" .
Martin Luther King, Jr. later used this phrase in the context of racial violence: "The old law of an eye for an eye leaves everyone blind".
One certainly need not be a christian--Gandhi for example--to realize that another wrong, e.g.(for example)state sanctioned murder, does not make a right, and that "justice" or more honestly put, vengeance ultimately leads to ultimate destruction of a civilized society
We need to get back to the penal system being corrective, fostering rehabilitation of the offender, and protecting society from dangerous persons. Furthermore our legislators must stop making sumptuary law in the thin veil of salutary law. These statutes aide and abet the "prison industry", and for example those(all too often "lily white front", estimable ladies and gentleman making millions in laundered money due to the astronomical profits of relegating vice to the illegal market)profiting and causing so much misery, destruction and death due to, for example the "war on drugs".
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