Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
September 04, 2003
RELIGION: Cycle of Violence

Mac Thomason has some appropriate words for Paul Hill, who was executed for killing a doctor who performed abortions. I'm ambivalent about the death penalty for ordinary criminals for a variety of religious and other reasons, and of course I'm against abortion, but I'm not about to shed a tear for the Reverend Hill.

But if abortion has killed some 40 million Americans, isn't violent resistance the only moral thing to do? On the surface, that's a tough question. Alan Dershowitz has argued that the answer is yes: Dersh believes a fetus is not a human life, but argues by analogy to the Holocaust that it might be appropriate to use violence against abortion doctors if you believed it was (he makes the point mostly because he thinks it shows hypocrisy on the pro-life side). Bottom line, though: this isn't Nazi Germany. We have democracy and the rule of law, and those things stand as bulwarks against further depradations. We have an obligation, a moral obligation, to work peacefully within that system to end the violence -- not use the sword to overthrow the good with the bad.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 10:53 PM | Religion | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

The issue is complicated, of course, by the fact that the courts have taken the question out of elected officials' hands. But on this, as with so many other policy questions, Congress and the state legislatures must reclaim their authority.

Posted by: John Salmon at September 7, 2003 01:44 AM
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