Death penalty sends wrong signal that killing is right, warns bishop

Death penalty sends wrong signal that killing is right, warns bishop

By CBCP News

December 24, 2020

Manila, Philippines

The death penalty sends the wrong message to society that it is right to kill people, a Catholic bishop warned.

Amid studies showing that execution fails to act as a deterrent to crime, Bishop Joel Baylon of Legazpi said that the capital punishment should be out of the question

“Bringing back the death penalty merely justifies the idea that it is okay to kill people,” said Baylon, who heads the bishops’ Commission on Prison Pastoral Care.

“But it is never right to kill people— even if it is done by the State,” he said.

Calls to reimpose the death penalty in the country surfaced after a cop fatally shot a mother and her son in Tarlac on Sunday.

The bishop, however, cautioned that the capital punishment also sends a wrong signal that violence solves problems.

Baylon stressed that there are other ways to make people responsible and accountable for the wrong they have done.

“Justice is never punitive nor vindictive, otherwise we go back to the ancient principle of ‘ex talionis’–an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth–which is no longer accepted,” he said.

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