Posted by: adventlife | February 12, 2012

The Right to Kill, by Nic Samojluk

A. Killing the Guilty

Some years ago the then U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft announced that he might “consider seeking the death penalty for Robert Hanssen, a former FBI agent” charged with the crime of passing extremely sensitive documents toRussia. Did Ashcroft have the right to take the life of another human being? As an individual, he did not possess said right, but, invested with the authority society had granted him, he did have the legal right to seek this “ultimate sanction” against one who had compromised the security of our American personnel, whose life might have been placed in jeopardy as a result of said treasonous action.

Of course, there are those who are adamantly opposed to the death penalty because of its finality, and the undeniable risk of executing an individual who later on might be discovered to have been innocent of the crime. Actually, there have been a large number of reported cases of individuals whose innocence was discovered after decades of incarceration. The technological advances in DNA testing have proved very useful in exonerating many prisoners who otherwise would have ended their life behind bars.

As I was surfing the Internet searching for specific examples, I stumbled on several cases that took place in the State of Texas, including that of Christopher Ochoa, who admitted the killing out of fear for his life, Todd Robinson, who was pardoned by Gov. George W. Bush, and Roy Criner, who was wrongly sentenced for 99 years in prison for a crime he did not commit. This brings us to another notorious case: Timothy McVeigh, who managed to level theAlfredP.MurrahFederalBuildingsolo style, in which 168 totally innocent people died, including 19 children, and for which action Timothy has shown not the slightest sign of remorse. When he was scheduled to die, Attorney General John Ashcroft postponed his execution as a result of the FBI failure to turn more than 3,000 pages of documents to McVeigh’s lawyers during the trial.

Would you question society’s right to end the life of one who cowardly destroyed the lives of 168 innocent people? Most Americans are in favor of the death penalty when the guilt of murderers is unquestionable. Nevertheless, there are those who were opposed to the execution of McVeigh for many reasons: it does not right the wrong, it shows that society believes in the use of violence, it grants him what he wishes for–notoriety and death–and it diminishes our respect for the sacredness of human life. Cardinal Roger Mahony, the former Catholic Archbishop ofLos Angeles, added another reason for sparing the life of Timothy McVeigh: providing him with prison time to increase the chance that he might one day realize the enormity of his crime.

B. Killing the Innocent

Regardless of what society thinks about the execution of criminals whose guilt leaves no room for doubt, there is a universal agreement that innocent individuals do not deserve to die–much less for the crime that someone else has committed. Even McVeigh admitted that, had he known that there were children in theOklahomafederal building, he might have reconsidered his terrorist plan. I used to support the capital punishment as a useful deterrent of crime, but I changed my mind when I read the reported cases of a large number of individuals who had been incarcerated for crimes they did not commit, and after the execution of Karla Faye Tucker, who experienced a conversion while in prison, and who showed more than anybody else that she was no longer a threat to society.

The finality and irreversibility of this type of punishment makes me wonder about the wisdom of insisting on a remedy which does not provide for redress in the event of an erroneous verdict. For this reason, I concur with the suggestion of Pope John Paul II in his “Evangelium Vitae” encyclical that the death penalty should probably be “abolished completely.” It is true, that there might be cases where the likelihood of making an error in judgment is probably zero, and the McVeigh case is a good example; nevertheless, isn’t it better to leave the imposition of the death penalty to the only one who is infallible in his judgment: Almighty God, the only one who can redress the wrong in the event of a mistake?

C. Killing the Unborn

If you agree with me that it is a miscarriage of justice to take the life of an innocent individual, then you probably would also concur with me that either dismembering or poisoning the unborn represent an act of cruelty and unfairness, since it would be hard to suggest that an unborn baby could be guilty of any crime. This is why The Catholic Bishops of New York State issued the following statement some years ago: “The death penalty is no more the answer to crime than abortion is the answer for unplanned pregnancies. Death is never the answer.” Why is it then that we have sacrificed fifty million unborn babies since 1973? For the simple reason that the Supreme Court, with the stroke of a pen, deprived the unborn of personhood, leaving them at the mercy of the pregnant woman and her physician.

Since then, some abortionists have discovered that the art of killing can be much more lucrative than the art of healing, for which they were originally trained, since they can collect a fee for the abortion, and another from the sale of baby parts. One of them, Dr. Edward C. Allred, former owner of 21 abortion clinics in California, has been described as mass delivering aborted babies the way McDonald restaurants turns hamburgers. Having started with a “negative net worth” back in 1967, three years after graduating fromLomaLindaUniversity; he eventually, thanks to his expertise in delivering dead babies, became a “horse-racing magnate” that travelleded with a “16-member security force” as protection from anti-abortion zealots. He has contributed, through his many business entities, nearly half a million dollars to many Republican candidates, including Pete Wilson, Matt Fong, and others, many of whom are declared “anti-abortion” politicians.

He seems to be insulated from criticism by the media, as discovered by a pro-lifer who accidentally found out that he was in court testifying in his own behalf at the Orange County Superior Court. He immediately notified the Orange County Register, the Los Angeles Times, and other smaller papers, who refused to report the news. This “mega-abortionist” settled the wrongful death of the Hispanic woman in a hurry. Some years ago, before he retired and sold his business to aRedlands,Californiadentist Dr. Allred sued Planned Parenthood “for taking away a lucrative contract to do abortions for Kaiser HMO,” but his hopes of obtaining an injunction against the competitor of his Family Planning Associates failed, and he had no choice but to settle the lawsuit.

D. Stopping the Killing

You may wonder what it would take to stop this merciless killing of the innocent. It all hinges on the way society defines personhood. Back in 1973 the U.S. Supreme Court determined that the unborn were divested of personhood, and consequently not entitled to the protection of the law. Since then, the war between pro-abortion and pro-life forces has been raging on without abatement. Some years ago the “Arkansas Supreme Court ruled that a fetus is a person,” thus reversing a lower court decision. The case involved the wrongful death of a woman and her 12 week fetus, both of whom died due to negligent medical care. It is not difficult to guess what the outcome will be if there is an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court! I would invite you to decide for yourself whether the Arkansas Supreme Court were right in their decision.

You can do this by clicking on the following highlighted portion of the text, which shows the picture-shot during surgery-of a tiny hand of a ” 21-week-old unborn named Samuel Alexander Armas,” diagnosed with spina bifida. If you agree with me that said tiny hand reaching for the hand of the surgeon represents a person, instead of a mere lump of tissue, then what shall we say regarding the late abortions? Not long ago, a woman was sentenced to 12 years in prison inSouth Carolinafor using “crack cocaine during pregnancy,” which caused the death of her unborn child. You don’t punish somebody for killing a lump of cells in your body!

The title of this article is “The Right to Kill.” Do you think that women have an innate right to kill their children before they are born? Do you think that husbands and boyfriends have the right to demand the death of the unborn if the pregnancy was unplanned? Evidently Robert Blake, the notorious Hollywood actor, was convinced that he was right when he bitterly complained to Bonny Lee Bakley, his wife, prior to her murder: “You swore to me, you promised …’I will have an abortion’ … and that was a lie … a big lie.
That’s the kind of lie that God looks down and says ‘Hey, wait a minute.’” We do not know who murdered Bakley, but her husband became the prime and only suspect overnight. Did he hire a hit man to murder his wife because she refused to have an abortion? We do not know, but there is no doubt that he felt he had the right to demand the killing of her daughter. What is the difference between hiring a hit man to kill somebody and hiring a licensed abortionist to do the same? If you hire a hit man, you go to jail, but if you hire an abortionist, both you and the physician are protected by a twisted legal system. May the Lord have mercy on us!

More:===> If this topic is of interest to you, I suggest you secure a copy of the book I recently published entitled: From Pro-life to Pro-choice: The Dramatic Shift in Seventh-day Adventists’ Attitudes Towards Abortion from the printer. Here is the link: http://lulu.com. You will need to type my name, Nic Samojluk, in the blank “Search” space to access my book’s web page.

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