Capital punishment

The federal government is in the business of killing prisoners again. A recent struggle has been over the US Justice Department's killing of Arkansan Daniel Lewis Lee for the crimes of torture and murder.

Most recent explanations for executing such prisoners have to do with distributing vengeance to the families of victims, and for upholding man's law.

Fortunately, the most recent instructions from God the Son, when Jesus walked among us, were to preach deliverance unto the captives and to not kill.

Unfortunately, several of Jesus' apostles were killed by rulers and kings who were thought to be agents of their gods.

Here in America, many evangelicals follow the Apostle Paul, whose 13th chapter of his letter to the Romans equates the powers of earthly rulers with the power of God. Many western rulers follow Paul because Paul is much easier than Jesus to follow. Paul, too, was killed by man's law.

US Attorney General William Barr recently told a reporter that history is written by the winners (victors). Barr was right. Political victors often declare incorrectly that their candidates have been given power by God. When rulers kill, they not only kill the killers, they kill their own humanity.

Society kills, but humanity does not. Capital punishment denies humanity to the victims, families and states. Does justice involve killing a prisoner who will die anyway? The business of killing is about power, not justice.

Gene Mason, Jacksonville

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