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Pope Declares Death Penalty Inadmissible in All Cases

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ROME — Pope Francis has declared the death penalty inadmissible in all cases because it is “an attack” on the “dignity of the person,” the Vatican announced on Thursday, in a definitive shift in Roman Catholic teaching that could put enormous pressure on lawmakers and politicians around the world.
Francis, who has spoken out against capital punishment before — including in 2015 in an address to Congress — added the change to the Catechism, the collection of beliefs for the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics.
The revision says the church would work “with determination” for the abolition of capital punishment worldwide.
“I think this will be a big deal for the future of the death penalty in the world,” said John Thavis, a Vatican expert and author. “People who work with prisoners on death row will be thrilled, and I think this will become a banner social justice issue for the church,” he added.
Sergio D’Elia, the secretary of Hands Off Cain, an association that works to abolish capital puni…

South Carolina: Candidate running to be governor calls for return of firing squad

Catherine Templeton
In the wake of Sunday's deadly riot at a South Carolina prison, one of the Republicans running for governor has called for bringing back firing squads.

On a radio program, Catherine Templeton said firing squads should be revived in the Palmetto State. The Republican made the comments Tuesday on the Bob Mclain Show.

"Criminals legally sentenced to death are getting an unofficial reprieve right now as South Carolina goes without the drugs necessary for lethal injection," Templeton said. "We must make the death penalty swift and final. I will push for legislation allowing firing squads for court-ordered executions. And I will also seek to deny condemned inmates their choice of execution."

Templeton, who was a Cabinet director under former S.C. Gov. Nikki Haley, made her comments a little more than a day after the riot at Lee Correctional Institution in Bishopville late Sunday that left 7 inmates dead.

The Charleston attorney is not the first politician in South Carolina to try and revive the use of the firing squad. S.C. Rep. Josh Putnam, R-Anderson, filed a bill in February that called for firing squads to help execute the state's death row inmates.

Mississippi, Oklahoma and Utah are currently the only states that have execution by firing squad, according to deathpenaltyinfo.org.

Use of firing squads was banned in Utah in 2004, but revived in 2015, when legislation was enacted to allowing execution by firing squad if the drugs used for lethal injection are unavailable.

In November 2017, Gov. Henry McMaster announced that South Carolina does not have the drugs necessary to carry out lethal injection. The deadly mix requires 3 drugs - pentobarbital, pancuronium bromide and potassium chloride - all of which the state does not have.

Templeton has been critical of McMaster on this issue, and for his handling of the criminal justice system.

"Under Henry McMaster's watch, prisoners have been rioting and jumping fences. They use cell phones to get access to drugs and contact criminal cronies," Templeton said on the radio program. "When I'm governor, once criminals are put in prison, they will no longer dictate or demand special favor."

McMaster's campaign responded to Templeton's remarks, disputing some of her attacks on the governor.

"Governor McMaster has locked up scores of criminals during his career as U.S. attorney and South Carolina attorney general, and as governor he has led the charge in giving prisons the resources they need to be secure and keep contraband out of the hands of prisoners," Campaign Communications Director Caroline Anderegg told The State. "Catherine Templeton's false and misleading attacks are nothing but a cheap political gambit by a candidate with zero understanding of or experience in law enforcement.

"The only people responsible for this horrific violence are the criminals who perpetrated it, and for Templeton to suggest otherwise is a disgusting new low."

Including Templeton and McMaster, there are 5 Republicans running for governor. That also includes Lt. Gov. Kevin Bryant, former Lt. Gov. Yancey McGill and businessman John Warren.

3 Democrats - Charleston businessman Phil Noble, state Rep. James Smith of Columbia and Florence attorney Marguerite Willis - also are running for governor.

Source: thestate.com, Noah Feit, April 17, 2018


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"One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed,
but by the punishments that the good have inflicted." -- Oscar Wilde

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